Sunday, May 21, 2006

More on MacBook Vista compatibility

In the last article I commented on potential Vista compatibility for the MacBook and said that judging by the specs, the MacBook should support Aero Glass on Windows Vista. Some further points:

1) Intel recommends Core Duo with the Intel 945 series chipsets (which utilizes GMA 950) for Vista compatibility.
2) The Intel Mac mini uses Intel 945, and presumably so does the MacBook (although we have not yet received confirmation of this).
3) Intel already has written a WDDM driver for Intel 945 on Vista.
4) Despite the fact that OS X allocates only 64/80 MB of system RAM for use by the GPU on the Mac mini, Windows XP allocates 256 MB (provided one has enough system RAM), which is more than sufficient for Vista even with large screens. It is clear that the Mac mini's 64/80 MB GPU RAM limitation is not a hardware limitation.
5) Not only was there that video showing GMA 950 support, PC World also confirmed full Aero Glass functionality on an Acer laptop with Intel 945.

So far I have not seen anyone who has tested Vista on the MacBook, but I'm sure that will come soon enough. It would be nice if someone could at least test the MacBook with the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor, but unfortunately the download is no longer available.

[Update 2006-05-22]

The Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor is now back up.

Also, I have now confirmed that the MacBook uses the Intel 945GM chipset (which is not big surprise considering that's the chipset found in the Mac mini, and we already knew that the MacBook has the GMA 950). Intel has this to say about the chipset and Vista compatibility: "Mobile Intel® 945GM Express Chipset family platforms using 512MB of system memory or greater meet all current requirements for the Microsoft Windows Vista* Capable PC program."

[Update 2006-05-22]

c|net weighs in:
Last week, Microsoft released a test version of its "Upgrade Advisor," a downloadable tool that aims to tell users how Vista-ready their system is.

Ironically, the machine that was in the best shape for Vista, at least according to the tool, was a loaner Mac Mini with 1GB of memory. That system was Aero-ready, according to the tool, as long as I devoted more of the system's modest hard drive over to the Windows partition. It needed 15GB of the drive to be free, and most of the free space was over on the Mac side of the house.
Screengrabs of the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor running on incompletely supported PCs are here.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

2) The Intel Mac mini uses Intel 945, and presumably so does the MacBook (although we have not yet received confirmation of this).

A quick trip to the apple site confirms that, yes, Macbook has Intel GMA 950 graphics processor with 64MB of DDR2 SDRAM shared with main memory. [http://www.apple.com/macbook/specs.html]

Anonymous said...

I'm running vista on a Intel MacBook right now. Seems to be working fine...

Anonymous said...

i run vista on my Macbook pro 1gb ram, 2.16 duo, and it works very well (although the OS is rubbish). installation is difficult but deffinetly possible with enough time and patience.

Anonymous said...

Best match - business edition with my macbook C2D

Here's a list of the hardware items that did not pass the scan - ie vista was unable to identify these.

Apple Trackpad filter
Atheros AR5008 Wireless Network Adapter
Apple Keyboard & Trackpad Apple Computer, Inc.
Apple Trackpad
SigmaTel High Definition Audio CODEC
Apple Keyboard
Apple Keyboard Support Apple Computer, Inc.
Apple Built-In Bluetooth Apple Computer Inc.
Apple Built-in iSight

Cheers, Bard

Anonymous said...

I'm sure with the next release of BootCamp Windows Vista should be fully compatible with any Mac. Hopefully all the Mac hardware will be supported in Windows Vista.

Mahan said...

I am using Boot Camp to run Vista, it runs fine the only problem is that there are a few devices which need updated drivers, the XP Drivers do not work with some of these devices. The built in video card however, does come with drivers from Microsoft and it works. Also I have been able to run Vista with parallel desktops and it runs fine also(parallel desktops provides their own virtual drivers for XP and Vista) Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

I installed Vista using Bootcamp on my Macbook 2.16 Ghz with 1 GB RAM. The fan seems to be on constantly and that irritates me.. And the bottom seems to be heating up a bit, does anybody else have the same problem?