Thursday, December 13, 2007

How to ensure your MacBook Pro hard drive upgrade is Boot Camp ready

Disk UtilityI recently upgraded my MacBook Pro's 80 GB hard drive to a 160 GB Hitachi Travelstar. I leaned on an upgrade article I found on Mac World and everything went smooth. In fact, it was completely painless until I tried to use Tiger's Boot Camp Assistant at which time my Mac told me that the hard drive could not be partitioned and I would need to reformat it.

The exact error message Boot Camp Assistant reported to me was:

"The Startup Disk cannot be partitioned or restored to a single partition.

The startup disk must be formatted as a single MAC OS Extended (Journaled) volume or already partitioned by Boot Camp Assistant for installing Windows"

In accordance with the instructions from Mac World, I DID partition the drive as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). After repeating the entire process of erasing the new drive and migrating my backed-up OS onto the new drive and failing, I was just about at the point of starting over with my Tiger installation disks. Luckily, I found a solution.

Apple's Support and forums offered no solutions. After digging around on the Internet and finding many similar problems but no answers, I stumbled upon an article that noted that to get Windows up and running under Boot Camp the drive had to be formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) with a GUID partition scheme.

Now I was even more confused, because when formatting the new drive with Disk Utility there is no GUID partition scheme option. The GUID partition scheme does exist, however. There just isn't a logical way to format the disk with it using Disk Utility.


* Open Disk Utility.
* Select the drive you wish to erase (format).
* Format the drive as "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)".
* Still in Disk Utility and with the drive you just formatted selected, click the "Partition" tab.
* Divide the disk into two partitions (the size is irrelevant, we'll be deleting one of the partitions before we're done).
* For each partition again specify the "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)" format type.
* For each partition click the "Options" button and select the "GUID Partition Table" option.
* Partition the drive.
* When the partitioning is complete, remove the second partition (select it and click the '-' button)
* Apply the change.

The result: a single partition hard drive which is formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) with a GUID Partition Table. Now you can open Boot Camp Assistant, partition the drive, and install Windows.

No comments: