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Best, inexpensive way to download Windows 8 or 10 on Mac

Discussion in 'Apple Mac' started by BirdieMac, Oct 8, 2016.

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  1. BirdieMac

    BirdieMac Thread Starter

    Oct 8, 2016
    Our house has two Mac Book Airs, a Mac desktop, and a Toshiba Satellite Radius 2 in 1 Intel Core i5. My boys are homeschooled and they have to take turns using my Toshiba to do their software programs. Unfortunately, the software is not compatible with our "barely used" Macs, so, I have been planning to buy three new PC laptops, but it's really not in my budget. My 13 year old told me about Windows Emulator. (Ha, right? These kids know more about tech than mom and dad.) So, I've been doing some research, but need a little help.

    I am interested in downloading Windows 8 or higher to all three Apples for my boys' homeschool programs. The requirements for their Switch on Schoolhouse software are Windows Vista Service Pack (SP) 2 and Windows (7, 8, 8.1 or 10). I understand that Windows it's downloadable through Bootcamp, but my question is, do I need to purchase 3 separate Windows programs or can I use the same one on all three Apples? I know you need a key, but would it be shareable with all three?

    Also, what am I looking at in terms of cost for the Windows 10 program for Mac? Am I better off downloading vs. purchasing a physical disk at a Best Buy, Amazon, Walmart, etc.? Hey, if I have to buy three separate Windows programs, it's still better than purchasing three new PCs. Thanks for your help!
  2. etaf

    etaf Moderator

    Oct 2, 2003
    First Name:
    you need a license to run each version of windows on each PC or Mac

    when you purchase , just be careful the source is a reliable source , some very cheap versions of windows may not authenticate as they may not be genuine or OEM license
  3. Headrush


    Feb 9, 2005
    What year MacBook Air do you have?
    Bootcamp 6 is supported on the mid 2012 models and newer.

    This isn't to say Windows 10 won't run on older models, it's just not officially supported.
    (I run it fine on my unsupported 2010 Mac Pro)

    You do need 3 licenses (one for each machine), but you can use the same media to install on all the computers.
    (Technically you can install Windows 10 without a license but you'll need it to authenticate Windows after install)

    I've always found it best to download Windows directly, keep a backup, and then use that file with Bootcamp. Bootcamp will handle copying files onto the HD and start the Windows installer from the HD. Buying a DVD from a local store will be slower and more work, especially if you don't have optical drives with your MacBook Airs.

    I purchased my copy of Windows 10 directly from Microsoft. (Download)
    If you have a optical drive you can burn a copy to DVD for backup if you need/want to.
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