How to Switch Between Mac and Windows Without Interruption

June 15, 2022
05 mins 21 seconds

Author: Haziqa Sajid

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Switching back and forth between different operating systems (OS) on the same computer can cause a lot of frustration over time. Especially if you’re familiar with the hassle of rebooting your PC to access the other OS, you already understand the frustration involved.

We’ll get into more detail about this issue below. For users looking to find an easy way to perform a MAC switch between windows without interruption, look no further. Let’s dive into how this can be done more quickly and effectively.

The Old Way

The reboot method can be deemed the ‘old way’ of performing a MAC switch between windows. It involves being attentive when the computer restarts to hold down the option key. Then, you’ll have to restart it again to click it when required.

This process can be time-consuming and frustrating. Previously, the other way (which we’ll get into below) was still not fully adequate for a long time. Users had no choice but to rely on pressing the option key on time to perform a MAC switch between Windows.

Here’s how the reboot process works this way:

  • Whichever OS (MAC or Windows) you’re on, restart your computer.
  • Press and hold the Option orAlt key on your keyboard when your PC is restarting.
  • A window will open asking you to choose between MAC and Windows.
  • Choose the OS you want to use and get started.

The New Way

With the old way, users were tied down to pressing the option when the computer was in the reboot process. But now with the ‘new way’, users can use ‘Boot Camp’. An in-built software utility created for the very purpose of switching between MAC and Windows.

We come across two scenarios here. In the first one, you’re using Apple hardware, and in the second, you’re using any other hardware that runs Windows. The process in both scenarios is different, and let’s see how to switch between operating systems in both cases.

With Macintosh Hardware

Getting Familiar with Apple’s Boot Camp

The Boot Camp software, created in collaboration with Microsoft, is Apple’s solution to the problem of trying to time the option key. This method does not require pressing any keys on time, and it uses Boot Camp as the built-in software to perform a MAC switch between Windows while using any operating system.

On the other hand, Boot Camp has been around since 2006, its use-case has increased. It has extended support for different OS versions to run on Apple hardware in recent years. Boot Camp can be found in the Utilities folder within the application folder on your MacOS.

Using Bootcamp to Switch Without Interruption

  • From Windows to MAC
    If you’re using Windows and wish to switch over to a Mac using Boot Camp, follow these simple steps:
    1. Scroll down to the bottom right corner of your screen. You should see the taskbar. Press the upward arrow icon to show the hidden icons.
    2. Click on the Bootcamp icon, which should look something like this:
    3. Press the ‘restart’ option to switch from Windows to Mac.
    4. And that’s it. You can perform a MAC switch between Windows on your MAC hardware by following these simple steps.
  • From MAC to Windows
    1. In the bottom right corner of your screen on macOS, click the System Preferences icon.
    2. You should see an icon in the shape of a hard disk. This is the Startup Disk icon. Click on it to display both MacOS and Windows installed on your computer.
    3. You should see both Windows and MacOS installed on your computer. Click on Windows and then restart.
    4. After you press restart, the process of a MAC switch between Windows should be complete.

Setting up a Default OS

You can also use Boot Camp to set a default OS on your MAC hardware. Your default OS (i.e. macOS or Windows) will load when you start your computer. To set your default OS, follow the below-listed steps:

  • Press the Boot Camp icon displayed on the taskbar.
  • If prompted with “User Account Control,” choose Yes to proceed.
  • Two startup disks representing both operating systems will appear. Select either MacOS or Windows to set it as the default OS.
  • Click on “Apply.” Boot Camp will set it as the default OS.

If You Acquire Additional Hardware

For Apple users, Boot Camp is a reliable utility that can solve the issue of switching back and forth between Windows and macOS. But, we can’t say the same for users with hardware other than Apple.

Apple’s strict policies make it hard for macOS to be used outside of Apple’s hardware. Technically, there are ways to install the Windows OS on a Mac. Methods such as using emulators, known as a Hackintosh, but they are not officially authorized by Apple.

Given that even using macOS on any other hardware is so difficult, the issue of a MAC switch between Windows is complicated, to say the least. This is why users that don’t have MAC hardware are usually confined to the reboot process.

Avoid The Entire Phenomenon: Back-And-Forth Switching Is No Longer A Problem With Virtualization

If you’ve read this far, you might have a valid question running through your head. Even if I’m using Boot Camp, I still have to shut down and restart my computer. So how has the issue of “interruption” been resolved?

Well, it hasn’t. All of your programs have to be shut down, even with Boot Camp, and you still have to face the fact that you’ll have to open everything all over again. So, the question arises: is there no way to resolve the issue of “interruption”?

Virtualization is a process that makes your hardware irrelevant. You can skip the restart process altogether by using a “virtual desktop” run through a server. Virtualization services such as V2 Cloud allow you to use multiple virtual desktops as different workspaces. You can run one MacOS on one virtual desktop and Windows on another.

The virtualization process makes it possible to keep your data and workflow stored on a server as it is when you leave. You can switch back and forth without worrying about the interruption, and you’re not weighed down by the hardware you’re using.

For many users, services such as V2 Cloud make this cheaper. You can pick and choose specs to match your requirements.

Schedule a free consultation with our team to learn more about what V2 Cloud can do for you and how this process can assist you in resolving your issue.

You can also visit our blog to learn more about desktop virtualization.

Written By: Haziqa Sajid

Freelance tech writer and content marketer for tech, SaaS, and AI companies | Helped 50+ tech businesses with engagement-driven content.