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Adventures in DualBoot-Land (Windows 8 + Lion "Story")

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Apologies if this is in the incorrect forum! This isn't my first hackintosh, but my first post on this forum. It's not a question, it's not even a guide - it's actually just my experiences installing this time around. I ran in to some really common problems, and I'm hoping that perhaps people googling can see how easy they are to deal with. I'm also using it as a thank you to this whole community. :) If this is any good I'll do a similar one when I replace my Dell Mini (1011) LCD and dual boot it with Xubuntu.


Specs (Early 2009 Build - So pretty low-spec):

  • Motherboard: Asus PD5SD2-VM
  • Processor: Intel Celeron Dual Core 2.0Ghz
  • Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce GT520 1GB
  • RAM: 2x 2GB Crucial DDR2 Modules
  • Hard Disk Drive: SATA Based
  • Optical Disk Drive: SATA Based
  • Wifi USB Adaptor: Asus WL167g V3

Windows 8 Installation

I ran the windows installer first as I knew it would probably be rather temperamental with installing on a disk formatted in a way it doesn't expect; however I made a bit of a boo-boo and forgot to make another partition for Mac OS X. (I left half the disk drive unformatted; so essentially free space)


The windows 8 installation was done via a USB drive made with WinUSB and was rather uneventful. (If anyone's thinking of trying windows 8; my advice is don't bother. I hate it. It's like a tablet computer had sex with a desktop and it had an inbred child who couldn't make his mind up what he wanted to be.*) I installed my essential apps (Developer tools mainly.) and set forth on the hackintosh journey once more!


Lion Installation

This is where the first problem occurred: I couldn't make a suitable bootable media. In the past I used my Fedora box and ran 'dd' to transfer the disk image, but this wasn't working this time. I took a punt with Transmac and it paid off - I soon had my DVD burned.


I hit the usual 'Waiting for root disk' error - so checked my BIOS and realised I hadn't set my BIOS settings correctly. I soon booted into the DVD and found that Disk Utility couldn't partition the free space on my hard drive; this was quickly fixed by using diskpart from the Windows 8 command line.


I know using "distro" hackintosh packages is the source of a huge debate, but I went for iAtkos purely for simplicity. Let me tell you something though; when people say DVD is slower than USB as an installation media - they're on to something! This was a horrifically slow installation; or it seemed like it.* If you're like me though, you'll be pleased to get that far! My second issue with the installation was the dreaded '[PCI Configuration begin]' hang - this was fixed the 'npci=0x2000' boot flag though.


When I rebooted post-install everything was working out of the box. Previously, with the same hardware and same OS I had to install VoodooHDA to handle audio; not this time! My mouse didn't want to work during the set-up though, so I had to use my keyboard only - when I eventually booted in to the desktop it worked though.


I rebooted to ensure everything was working fine when I hit a snag - F718x: Fintek: Found unsupported chip. I rebooted several times and always hit this before a kernel panic; they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing multiple times expecting a different outcome; and this most certainly was driving me insane.


I managed to boot in to single user mode however, and remove the kext that was causing the issue...


mount /
cd /System/Library/Extensions/SuperIOFamily.kext/Contents/Plugins/
rm -rf F718x.kext


Upon another restart I was finally in a working environment. I was still having to use that npci boot flag though - so I edited the chameleon boot.plist file like so..


$ cd /Extra/
$ sudo nano org.chameleon.Boot.plist

  <key>Kernel Flags</key>
	<string>-v npci=0x2000</string>


Next up was installing the drivers for my ASUS WL167g V3 - this was flawless, simply using the drivers from the ASUS website. This little USB adaptor cost a mere 7GBP - and I love it like a mother loves her child.


So now I had a working system; but there was still one little hitch - I was running 10.7.2 when I really wanted to be running the latest and greatest 10.7.4; so now for the real part I was dreading… updating!


I downloaded the combo update from the apple website and ran it; whilst it was running I generally twiddled my thumbs, played with my gum where a wisdom tooth has rudely decided to penetrate and hoped for the best.. It wasn't the best time to be thinking 'Oh {censored}, wasn't I going to make an image of my partition as soon as I got this system running?'!


When the update was finished installing I ran ######, at this point I will admit - I didn't know what to actually install. After all - everything worked out of the box to begin with, and I don't know exactly what voodoo magic was making my system work! Still, I decided now would be a good time to install the NVidia support for GT5** cards, some bootloader themes and FakeSMC just incase it was messed up during the update. I then rebooted and prayed for the best...


Uh oh! 'IntelCPUMonitor: can't add key to fake SMC device' and a kernel panic. I booted up in Single User Mode and removed the IntelCPUMonitor.kext before restarting and re-running ###### - installing FakeSMC and FakeSMC plugins again. I also went and deleted F718x.kext again, as ###### re-installed it as one of the FakeSMC plugins.


This time AppleIntelCPUPowerManagement was throwing kernel panics. I figured that NullCPUPowerManagement was doing a job and they might be clashing, so I moved ApplePUPowerManagement to another directory in single user mode. Reboot.. and the same.


I went and laid in bed, it was 0430 and I was admitting defeat. I laid there cursing every damn .kext file that existed. Then, a sudden rush of excitement came over me, and being a persistent son of a {censored} I marched over to my PC and fixed it once and for all. I booted into Single user mode and placed AppleIntelCPUPowerManagement.kext back in it's rightful place and removed IntelCPUMonitor. Reboot… it works. Flawlessly. I chuckled to myself as though I had defeated an army that was trying to ruin my attempts at world domination.


I then set about finally installing xCode, Chrome, Github and some more geekery before declaring a job well done.


Last step? Updating the OSx86 10.7.0 HCL of course!


In the next episode

Marmite discovers that his Windows 8 partition now won't boot - due to a Boot Configuration Data (BCD) issue. Will our protagonist fix it? Will he use EasyBCD? What about those annoying niggles such as keyboard layouts? Stay tuned for post-installation gossip..


Lessons Learnt:

- Partition your hard drive completely at the beginning, even if you create the second partition in FAT32 or NTFS - Disk Utility will be able to erase these partitions, but will not be able to create a new partition from free space!

- Create a restore point in Windows; this is obvious but it didn't occur to me. Windows WILL {censored} and moan when you boot in to it again; and if it's windows 8 you have no choice but to let it roll back to a previous restore point.

- Updates. Can. Be. A. Pain. In. The. Ass. (If not handled correctly! Prior googling would've led me to see this was actually quite a common problem I experienced.)

-The OSX86/hackintosh community is second to none. Often with some of the best technical discussions I've seen on the internet; much of it due to many people who are only too willing to lend a hand and try and troubleshoot when the original poster won't even utter a thank you; on behalf of all those posters who have forgot to say Thanks, or have argued with the advice they've received, I'd like to say Thanks. It's not often you can spend 5 seconds on google and almost definitely get an answer to a query.


Issues - all of which can be fixed when I get around to it no doubt:

- My RAM isn't picked up correctly; 333Mhz apparently - but this is a minor issue!

- Similarly, upon booting the System partition of Windows 8 is auto-mounted; a bit annoying

- Booting without -v gives me a kernel panic…!?


*My girlfriend went as far as being 'Oh, Macs look awful and confusing - I'd never spend money on a mac when a PC is so cheaper' to 'Wow, that's just convinced me to go Mac when that is out.' when she saw Windows 8.


**As a side note on installation times, when I was working as an ACMT at an AASP I was taught that on a Leopard installation it was not unusual to wait up to an hour for the installer to move from the '40 minute' mark. I'm not sure if this is still the case today (I'm no longer an ACMT) but that's a little factoid that may come in useful!


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