MacBook Pro w/Windows 7 RTM + My Favorite Apps

Well, now that Windows 7 has shipped, combined with the fact that my RTC flavor has been giving me a few problems of late – long boot times, system freezes and some flaky bluetooth support – I decided now would be a good time to flat-line my macBook Pro and install a fresh copy of Window 7 RTM.

For the record, i tend to rebuild my machines about once a year – as I’ve been known to be quite abusive on my equipment, lots of beta software, install, test, tweak, break; some for fun, others for work.  Either way, my machines efficiency tends to degrade after about 9-10 months, so I’ve gotten into the habit of doing a clean build every year or so, often around the holiday, or when noteworthy new OS’ ship.

Firstly, I must say, similar to my experience with Windows 7 beta 2 and RTC – the RTM installed very easily (and quickly!)  Overall, I’m very pleased with Windows 7 – and I’d encourage any “windows users” to upgrade, whether from XP or Vista – I’m confident your experience will be better than you expect 😉

A simple prep with bootCamp and off I went, maybe 20 minutes or so and I was up and running.  I then updated drivers and began to get my environment back up to snuff.  It’s probably noteworthy to add, i run a few different OS’ – macOS, ubuntu, redHat and Windows.  I use the macOS primarily for my personal and hobby use, and windows primarily for business – as I tend to run alot of business apps, like office/visual studio and SQL Management Studio.  Therefore, the apps listed below are installed on my Windows partition, since that’s what I’m rebuilding now..

Since there are lots of great “how to” articles on how to get Windows up on a mac, i thought I would take this post in a slightly different direction, outlining my application essentials, programs i tend to install time and time again on new machine builds – and what better time to knock out some documentation other than when Visual Studio is installing!! 🙂


  • MacBook Pro (late 2008, aluminum) – dual core 2.8Ghz, 4GB Ram, 320 GB 7200RPM hard drive
  • Windows Experience Index comes in @ a respectable 5.3 (due to gaming graphics)
  • Dual book Mac OSX w/Windows 7 Ultimate
  • VM Ware Fusion w/Windows XP, Vista, Ubuntu & Red Hat.
  • MS Office 2007 Ultimate w/SP1
  • Western Digital 500GB Passport Studio (firewire 800!)

Browsers: latest flavors of: IE 8 (whether i like it or not), Firefox, Opera, Safari & Chrome

Firefox AddOns:, power twitter, xMarks, readItLater,

Development Tools:

  • Visual Studio Team System 2008 + TFS team explorer w/SP1
  • SQL 2008 Express & Mgt Studio w/SP1
  • Visual Slick Edit 2009
  • Adobe Creative Suite 4
  • XML Spy
  • Expression Studio 3

Other Utilities:

  • Terminals
  • Visio 2007 w/SP1
  • Project 2007 w/SP1
  • Misc: debugView, fiddler, processMonitor, reflector, treeSizePro, linqPad, pixie
  • IM: Pidgin (personal), LCS/OCS (corporate)
  • TweetDeck – twitter utility
  • FolderShare
  • SyncToy
  • FoxIt Reader – pdf reader
  • ClearContext – Outlook filing tool
  • Flickr Uploadr
  • MagicDisk – use this for mounting ISO files
  • FileZilla – ftp client
  • iTunes (both in OS X  for personal use & iPhone sync + Windows for podCasts at the office)
  • JetAudio Plus 7.5.3 (for non iTune playlists and quick access)

Well, that’s my short list (of the top of my head anyway, i really should document this more formally – oh wait, i just did.)  I’ll update this a bit more in the coming days as I wrap up any final installs.  I am happy to report, what used to take me 2-3 days to entirely rebuild my machine – can now be done in about one evening, thanks macBook Pro! I guess some credit also goes to Windows 7, and a few other time-saving utilities, backups and sync technologies – such as fireFox xMarks.


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