The release of Boot Camp 1.1.2 a few days ago brought some substantial improvements in support for Apple’s USB modem laptop trackpad and keyboard and better network support especially for the new Core 2 Duo MacBook Pros.
However I used Boot Camp to install the latest Vista RC2 build a few weeks ago so naturally I wanted to update my Boot Camp drivers to the latest version. Here’s what I discovered.
How to manually extract the Mac drivers
A disappointing start for me. The Boot Camp Assistant in 1.1.2 wouldn’t automatically burn a Mac Drivers CD for me. It crapped out with an error message.
Luckily manually extracting the disk image from Boot Camp Assistant is not too hard. Just right-click (or “Command-click” if you are old-fashioned) on the Boot Camp Assistant icon in the Utilities folder of your Applications directory:
Select “Show Package Contents” and then double-click on the Contents folder and then the Resources folders.
You will see the disk image with the new drivers:
Burn that disk image to a CD using your favourite burn tool (Disco is nice!) and you are done.
Unfortunately you can’t install whem automatically using the built-in installer in Vista so you will need to follow the instructions in my earlier post with one change. The name of the installer has changed so you will need to type “E:Install Macintosh Drivers for Windows XP.exe /A /v” into the command line field of Vista’s Run box.
To be honest I didn’t notice much improvement over the drivers that came with Boot Camp 1.1.1. Some reports suggest a decrease in functionality with some laptop users losing the ability to right-click.
Autostarting Apple utilities in Vista.
Life is easier if the utilities that control screen brightness the right-click function and the Apple time correction application load at startup. This is easy to do but involves locating them in the extracted files from the step above and getting them into Vista’s startup folder.
First locate them among the drivers. You will need to find four files as one has a dynamic link library. Copy them to the System32 subdirectory in your Windows directory.
Right-click on the three executable files and select “Create Shortcut”. Then (this is the last step) you need to move those shortcuts into the startup folder of your Windows directory until you see this:
How these three utilities will automatically load when Vista starts.
Vista is like a foreign country; they do things differently there.
One of the most frustrating (or exciting) things about using Vista on a Mac is that nothing works. That is to say my favourite app Quicksilver doesn’t work. The keyboard shortcuts in your “muscle memory” don’t work.
You need to start again learning a whole new bad of tricks.
You can find some good tips and tricks for Vista RC1 and Vista RC2 to help you get started. (For example did you know that holding down the Shift key when right-clicking on an item in Vista gives you an extended Contextual Menu? Or that Command (â) + a number opens the appropriate item in your Quick Launchbar? Neither did I. There’s lots to discover.)