Boot Camp update brings 64-bit support to Windows drivers

Apple's dual-boot environment for Windows now fully supports 64-bit versions of Windows 7, 8, and 8.1.

Apple has released an updated version of its Boot Camp software to support installations of Windows on a secondary partition of its Mac systems. While Apple does not officially support third-party operating systems and software installed on your Mac, it does provide Boot Camp as an option so people can use Apple's trackpads and other hardware when running in Windows.

The Boot Camp update comes in two versions: one for the latest 2013 model iMac and MacBook systems, and another for all other models.

If you have a mid-2013 MacBook Air, a late-2013 MacBook Pro, or a late-2013 iMac, then you should download version 5.1.5640 of the update, and owners of all other models should download version 5.1.5621. The updates will likely need to be downloaded and installed manually, since they may not show up in Apple's Software Update service.

Once downloaded, you can follow these instructions to install the update. You will need an external hard drive or flash drive formatted to the FAT filesystem to perform this update:

  • The download file is a .zip file. Double click it to uncompress it if it is not automatically uncompressed.
  • Double-click the Boot Camp5 folder.
  • Copy the entire contents of the .zip file to the root level of a USB flash drive or hard drive that is formatted with the FAT file system.
  • When running Windows, locate the Boot Camp folder on the USB media you created in Step 3 and double click to open it.
  • Double click on setup to start installing the Boot Camp Support Software.
  • When prompted to allow changes, click Yes and follow the onscreen instructions.
  • Installation can take a few minutes. Don't interrupt the installation process. When installation is complete, click Finish in the dialog that appears.
  • A system restart dialog box will appear. Click Yes to complete the installation.

Along with standard bug fixes for the driver software, one of the new features of the Boot Camp update is implementation of 64-bit versions of the drivers, allowing for their use in 64-bit versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8.

If you use Boot Camp on your Mac, and especially if you are using a 64-bit version of Windows, then you might consider downloading and installing this update; however, be sure to fully back up your Boot Camp partition first. This can be done with tools like Winclone for OS X, or with a number of backup solutions for Window.



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About the author

    Topher, an avid Mac user for the past 15 years, has been a contributing author to MacFixIt since the spring of 2008. One of his passions is troubleshooting Mac problems and making the best use of Macs and Apple hardware at home and in the workplace.

     

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