I'm trying to install Windows 7 32bit on a 2007 20inch iMac with a 2.4GHz however I can't get Windows to boot whatsoever.

I'm not sure what's going on, I've burnt like 4 different ISOs to DVDs and they just won't boot. Some of them don't even show up, some of them get stuck at "Windows is loading files", some give errors and others just hang when I select them in the Alt Boot Menu.

What's going on? Has anyone had a similar issue to this, and what can I do? I'm starting to think that maybe the SuperDrive is faulty but I'm unsure. I have an external DVD Drive but the iMac doesn't detect it in the boot options.

  • Are you using BootCamp or do you just try boot from a Windows DVD?
    – nohillside
    Jun 13, 2021 at 15:33
  • Tried both Bootcamp & just booting from a DVD, none work. Jun 13, 2021 at 15:36
  • Windows 7 is suppose to include at least Service Pack 1 (SP1). I believe you can download from Microsoft. Jun 13, 2021 at 16:53
  • Does the Service Pack have to come WITH the ISO? Or do I have to install it after I install Windows 7 but that's not possible because I cannot boot into Windows 7 whatsoever Jun 13, 2021 at 16:56
  • 1
    Alright, I don't have a need for x64 Windows. I just checked and the EFI/Boot ROM version is the latest. I'm gonna try downloading an ISO with the SP1 bundled in and tell you how it goes. Jun 13, 2021 at 17:40

1 Answer 1


I have the same model Mac as you. The machine is a 2.4 GHz 2007 20-inch iMac. I downloaded to my 2011 iMac the English version of the current 32 bit Windows 7 from Microsoft's website Download Windows 7 Disc Images (ISO Files). The file name is Win7_Pro_SP1_English_x32.iso. The 2011 iMac is running High Sierra (macOS 10.13.6). I used the 2011 iMac to burned the ISO file to a DVD‑RW.

At startup of the 2007 iMac, I held down the option key until the Mac Startup Manager icons appeared. I selected the text Windows under the DVD icon to boot from DVD. I was able to boot from the DVD without any problems. I would assume if you have followed the same procedure, then either you did not successfully burn the DVD or the optical drive on the 2007 Mac is faulty. Since you have tried using the Boot Camp Assistant, I assume the Mac can run OS X without any issues. Also, you stated you verified the firmware is up to date.

There a some fairly old posts here a Ask Different regarding the installation of 64 bit Windows 7 on a Mac where the optical either no longer works or has been removed. For example, see the question Boot camp install of Windows 7 issue, no bootable devices.

More recently, a post has been made where Windows can be installed without using a DVD or a virtual machine by first installing Debian Linux. Once Debian is installed, Grub can be used to boot the Windows installer. See this answer. In your case, this answer would have to be modified to use a 64 bit Debian Linux and Windows 7.

  • I decided to try the VM method and that worked, thanks for your help though! Jun 14, 2021 at 9:08
  • Did you use VM method from an Ask Different answer or from some other website? Jun 14, 2021 at 9:10

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .