misbehaving macbook using windows
September 8, 2009 9:57 AM   Subscribe

My recently purchased 13'' Macbook Pro has been behaving strangely.

I recently got a 13'' Macbook Pro, with a 2.53GHz duo processor and 4gb of RAM. I use some software which only runs on Windows, so I installed windows using bootcamp and the drivers provided by mac. After about a week and a half, windows would no longer boot, aside from in safe mode. I would turn on the computer and the splash screen would appear, but then the screen would remain a very dark gray color.

I reinstalled both OSes (OSX and Windows), and everything was fine until a week later when the very same problem happened. Both times, I had VMware installed on OSX , and the second time I was able to boot up windows and shut it down using VMware. OSX appeared to be fine both times. I was running the Bootcamp partition using VMware.

I ran all checks that I could on the Mac after the first incident, and the second time I brought into Mac where they did a thorough check of everything, and reinstalled OSX. They and I found no hardware issues. I had not installed anything, or made an system changes before this problem occurred.

Has anyone else experienced this? Any suggestions about what could be going wrong?

I am ok using VMware, but I would prefer to certain that I can use Windows natively.

posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth to Education (6 answers total)
Best answer: Other than less memory available (and you have lots to spare) there's very little performance difference between Windows in a VM and Windows booted alone via Boot Camp.

They're both "native". Even via VMWare, Windows is running on the Intel hardware. It's certainly not emulated.

If 2 or 3Gb of RAM is enough for this special Windows-only software, set your VMWare machine to use that much RAM and run it that way all the time.
posted by rokusan at 2:16 PM on September 8, 2009

Well, to me, it sounds like you're doing something to screw up the bootcamp partition - any chance of a virus or trojan?

I've been using (on my <6>
Once you get it running, there's an app called WinClone that will let you clone your bootcamp partition (so if it dies you can ressurect it again)
posted by filmgeek at 5:19 PM on September 8, 2009

There is also a bootcamp update out there.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:32 PM on September 8, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks for your answers/suggestions.

To clarify, the splash screen would disappear, and the screen would go blank just like it would when booting normally but it would remain this color. It's basically a black screen, but backlight a little.

I don't quite understand how it runs natively if it is within another OS. I need to read up on that to understand it a bit better. But I'm playing around with memory allocation and it seems like it is getting close in terms of performance. And the mac gets a lot less hot which is nice.

filmgeek, so if I am doing something to mess up bootcamp, I have no idea what it is. As I said, I haven't made any major changes before it stops working, and it's extremely unlikely I have a virus (up to date mcafee, no dodgy downloads, all windows updates, only use computer at home/college in secure networks). Also the fact that it happened twice, after a complete harddrive wipe.

I'll take a look at the bootcamp update.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 9:29 PM on September 8, 2009

Best answer: For anyone interested, the problem appeared to be due to the nvidia driver. I had not made any changes to this, it just stopped working. So after talking to some knowledgeable mac-folks at my university, I upgraded this (when booted into safe-mode) and it seemed to solve the problem. I seem to be one of the few people who have had this problem.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 12:46 PM on September 18, 2009

Response by poster: And a secondary problem is that if you use an external screen, you need to use a combination of nvidia and windows controls to make sure it displays properly, and to know the screen resolution (it can't seem to auto-detect). I wonder if am I the only mbp owner with this problem?
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 6:44 PM on November 24, 2009

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