An idea struck me last night. I’ve long been dual-booting my Mac to Windows 7 so I can play Battlefield. The problem is that my Win7 copy is 32-bit, so it can’t utilize all of my RAM. I need a 64-bit OS. Win7 would be preferred, but I’m not going to pay full price for it just to play games.
Through the end of the month, Microsoft is selling Windows 8 Pro for $40 (I guess to convince people to buy it.) I was thinking I could perhaps get that and use it. My Windows partition is maxed out right now anyway, so I could bear blowing it away and starting over.
Unfortunately, I’ve read lots of reports of Battlefield not working right under Win8. People have reported memory leaks and game stuttering. I’ll have to hold off if that’s the case. I haven’t seen any official response from EA about it. I don’t know why they haven’t released an update for these issues.
Anyway, it turns out that MS lets you download Win8 freely as a 90-day trial. I found that link here. I downloaded it this morning and installed it as a virtual machine in VirtualBox, just to play around with it. That isn’t going to let me run Battlefield, of course, but I thought I’d tinker around with the OS and see what’s up. I only allocated 3 GB of memory to the virtual machine, as you can see in the screenshot.
So far I’m not sure what I think of the whole tiled Start screen side of the system. Perhaps once I customize the tiles more it will grow on me. Still, I’d prefer the OS to boot straight to the desktop.