Many onlookers are surprised to learn that I run Microsoft Windows 8 on my Macbook Air in dual-boot with OS X, which was almost certainly not designed in California for this incestuous combination.

But my 2012, 13" Macbook Air is the best hardware I have ever owned and Windows 8 is the best OS I have ever used. I use my Air daily, almost exclusively for software development and browsing the Web.

Tips for Running Windows on a Macbook Air

  • Apple's Trackpad drivers for Windows are less than stellar, so get Trackpad++, which is a better Multitouch driver for Windows. Not as slick as the OS X drivers, but it gets the job done.
  • Swap the Cmd ⌘ and Control keys, because the tiny Control key are tough for copy and paste shortcuts on Windows. Use something like MacWinKey (disclosure: my app) to remap this on-the-fly.
  • Install the Chrome Canary build to stop Chrome from crashing the unstable Intel HD 4000 graphics driver. Windows almost always recovers, but I find that Canary doesn't trigger the GPU crashes nearly as often.

The SSD is blazingly fast and acts as virtual memory to back the limited RAM (4GB) as long as you keep enough disk space free. My only complaints are that 4GB is not enough RAM for a power user and that the drive is too small.

Otherwise, my 13" Macbook Air (2012 model) performs admirably as a development machine running Visual Studio 2012.