My new mac book air is on the way, which version of windows should I purchase to run on it?
Submitted by Melissa Wagner on Sunday, September 22, 2013.
macOS & Mac Apps
Hello. I am delving in to the world of VoiceOver on a Mac book air and will be using vm fusion to run Windows and OSX. I do not know if I should purchase Windows 8 or Windows 7 since I do not have a copy of any Windows operating system. I am interested in hearing from anyone running either version of Windows with any screen reader and OSX. Thanks for the tips!
7 is good, because the interface is manageable and it functions well. With jaws 14 it is pleasant to use. 8 is awful unless you are using a touch screen device.
This pretty much depends on the screen reader you have or you want to buy / use. NVDA does well with 7 and 8 but oder Jaws versions - for instance - do not support 8. Do not count on the Narrator in 8, it is a big step forward in terms of built in accessibility for Windows but you are certainly still better off with a 3rd party tool. I would suggest 7 for the time being.
Windows 7 all the way. However, I say this as someone who has been using the Windows OS for several years now. Going from, say, Windows XP to Windows 7 was not a huge leap in terms of feeling comfortable with navigation and usage. Windows 7 did offer a huge performance boost and I found it to be a far more stable OS than Windows XP. I imagine it would run very fast on your Mac Air. Windows 8 on the other hand, is a completely different beast. If you've never used Windows before, the newness of it won't be as shocking or as frustrating an experience since going with Windows 7 or Windows 8 will be new to you either way. Still, I'd go with Windows 7. As for a screen reader, you have a few options. Most people would say go with Jaws. It's a very good choice and it'll allow you to do everything you need on the computer.
I have access to NVDA and Jaws and will buy Windows 7. I am a technology trainer and enjoy learning to use all types of technology. I was just looking for input and I appreciate all the valuable comments.
I would also recommend 7 for now. I have it running on my MacBook Air, and it is great! I also find that Windows itself seems to run faster on the Mac hardware, with the exception of boot up times. My native Windows 7 machine with an SSD boots significantly faster than the partition on the mac. I'm not quite certain as to why this is, I just have noticed it. NVDA works fine with Windows 8, and JAWS seems to do so under JAWS 15 quite well, but I have read of users having issues related to hardware and Windows 8. Which is why I went with 7. You can buy a DVD direct from Microsoft for win 7 home premium at $199, though you may find a better deal at a Micro Center or on Amazon. I previously purchased a Win 7 lisence and was able to redownload the iso of the OS, but it doesn't seem to be an option anymore. So if you did purchase an Air, you'll need to get that DVD as an image on a thumb drive or purchase a compatible external DVD drive for your Mac. Though Apple Support told me that an upgrade disc would work, which is $75 cheaper, I know of people who have tried this and had to do some registry trickery to get the OS to think it was not an upgrade. The upgrade disk will not work under Bootcamp. Not sure if your results would be different using another partition tool. I'd also recommend checking out the podcast Michael Hansen did about dual booting to get the most out of both your performance and battery life.
I would purchase windows 7 on you're mac.