OS X exists on a totally seperate partition. If you're running Windows in Bootcamp, you're running Windows, period. OS X is not running alongside it, and nothing is slowing it down.
The word Bootcamp is not being used correctly around here. MacOSX you find the bootcamp assistant, all this is is a partitioning tool, nothing more. The real use of Bootcamp is for the drivers required for Windows, in particular the Apple manufactured parts such as the touchpad. Bootcamp drivers are awful, really awful and Apple has them so poorly written that they hinder performance and in particular, battery life (thats why you will see all these "side by side"s tests on youtube claiming Macs have greater battery life when really its the bootcamp drivers and services chewing it up). My advice, sell the MBA and go for a straight out Windows 8 optimized PC, if you like touch or think you may use it then go for it!! If you're still keen on using an Apple product or for some very obscure reason OSX is a requirement for you then I will give you some pointers on what to do as I have done it all.
- Never ever single boot Windows, at start-up EFI will search for an OSX volume and only after it has scanned the whole disk will it decide to search for another suitable OS, in your case, Windows 8. This can be a real annoyance as it adds a good 20-30 seconds to boot and restart.
- Don't try and multi-boot. I have had OSX, Linux and Windows all at once and you are bound to run into problems at one stage with the disks or an OS corrupting/not being able to start
- You can't run two versions of Windows, so don't try and run Win8 win Win7
- If you rarely use MacOSX or just want their "in case" you need it, remove all the language files, uninstall any unnecessary (to you that is) crap like iLife etc. to make room for your new Windows partition
- Select your default start up OS from OSX (or bootcamp control panel... if you have it installed ) or if you frequently change OSes and don't want to have to keep holding in option key at boot then consider setting up rEFIt: http://refit.sourceforge.net/ it will give you a nice interface at start-up for OS selection
- Don't expect things to work like they do on a normal PC, your working at a second rate standard and as I said before it is absolutely no replacement for a real PC
How to do it:
- Remove any unnecessary crap from your hard drive or back it up for transfer to Windows later (better to have it on NTFS than HFS)
- Run bootcamp assistant and partition your hard drive to your desired size allocations
- If you're installing Windows 8 you're going to need the Bootcamp 4.0 drivers, in the assistant it will have an option to download them, last I checked, those servers were dead and it was pretty much impossible to download them, so PM me if you need a copy
- Restart your Mac, when the power comes back on hold the option/alt key at the chime screen (goes gray) and wait for the boot selector to come up
- Insert you're Windows 8 OEM copy (if you have an upgrade version then you have to install windows 7 first then override it)
- Select the Disc icon which should say Windows under it
- Run through the setup till you hit the hard drive selector screen
- Bootcamp assistant, being the novice software that it is, doesn't partion the hard drive as NTFS so go ahead and click advanced then format it
- Install to that partition and continue on through the setup until everything is done and your at the start screen
- As you will see Windows 8 has actually got drivers that are working for most of the OS ie screen, keyboard and likely mouse/trackpad
- NOW, this is where the fun begins , you have 2 options:
- Install bootcamp drivers and services from the disc or USB by running setup (to eject the disk you can do it via file explorer or you can hold down 2 fingers at the chime or if you have a mouse then the secondary click)
- Restart your computer (hold option to now select the Windows 8 Drive) and then set your bootcamp control panel settings from the system control panel or tray icon such as tap to click etc.
- You will now be able to use the touchpad features like 2 finger horizontal scrolling and also altering brightness and volume (mind you the overlay won't come up nor will the now playing for the music app)
- HOWEVER you will not be operating at real speeds or have great battery life
- Once Windows 8 is up and running go ahead and install the latest graphics and sound drivers (the stock Windows 8 ones are pretty good but if your attempting to game... then get the latest proper ones)
- If you have a trackpad and you want some awesome extra Windows 8 features go ahead and install touchpad ++ http://trackpad.powerplan7.com/ which gives you some seriously cool and powerful options unlike the stock and bootcamp ones, if your getting an error than you may need to install the bootcamp one first which is located in the bootcamp install folder/drivers/apple/AppleMultiTouchTrackPadInstaller.exe (64 bit is in the 64 folder)
- Change your Keyboard setting to English US (apple) and then everything should be mapped correctly
- If you need brightness and volume control there are free programs on the web that can use them as hot keys to mimic that functionality just do a quick Bing search
- Enjoy closer to native speeds!!
Pros and Cons for bootcamp
- No extra work involves, should just work
- Easy control panel options
- Difficulty = Easy/Medium (depends if you encounter any problems)
- limited in what you can do (especially the trackpad)
- TAXING ON PERFORMANCE AND BATTERY LIFE
Native drivers pros and cons:
- Significant increase in battery life and performance
- Greater flexibility and options (write your own drivers like me )
The third option:
- If your not good with trouble shooting and working with low level system features it could be a painful experience
- You will miss out on some functionality and won't have one control panel to change everything
- No simple update system
- DIFFICULTY = HARD/EXPERT
What I have going is a mixture of bootcamp drivers, native drivers, third party drivers and my own drivers/programs to make Windows 8 on a Mac an enjoyable experience. So feel free if your not going to install the whole bootcamp collection to pick and choose what you need/want and fill the gaps with other more stable drivers, the majority of important ones you won't find alternatives to (except of course touchpad with touch ++) are located in the /Drivers/Apple folder in the Bootcamp Drivers folder
Wow. That was a long post, I think I might put this into a thread where Mac users can find it so they can have the best of both worlds without having to try and figure everything out
if your unclear about any of this then PM me and I'd be happy to help
Windows 8 is the best!