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Apple (finally) boot camps Windows 7

19 days late

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Apple has released an update for its Boot Camp utility that lets you install Windows 7 on your Intel-based Mac.

But install at your own risk.

As we reported earlier this month, Apple missed its self-imposed deadline of the end of 2009 to release the software update required to dual-boot Mac OS X 10.6 (aka Snow Leopard) and Windows 7.

On Tuesday - 19 days late - Apple made good, offering free updates that support 32-bit and 64-bit installations of Windows 7 Home Premium, Professional, and Ultimate. The company also claimed to fix a pair of MacBook problems and add support for its wireless keyboard and Magic mouse.

In addition, Apple released a Windows 7 installation utility that "safely unmounts the read-only Macintosh volume on Microsoft Vista," new Windows 7 drivers for the most recent 21.5 and 27-inch iMacs, and a graphics firmware update that provide compatibility with Windows 7 for iMacs with Nvidia GeForce 7300 or 7600 GT graphics and Mac Pros with Nvidaia GeForce 7300 GT or Quadro FX 4500 cards.

Unfortunately, some posters to Apple's Boot Camp discussion forum are reporting problems with the new version 3.1 update to Boot Camp. Reported bugs include failure to install, plus continued trackpad and backlight problems.

Of course, the update has only been out for a couple of hours, so we don't yet know how widespread these problems might be - or if those Mac users who have experienced problems have something else mucking up their systems.

We'll keep an eye out for more reports, but we'd also like to know your experience with Boot Camp 3.1. If you've installed it, let us know whether it's safe or if dual-booters should wait for 3.1.1. ®

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