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I am trying to get Windows 10 working in Bootcamp under Big Sur. I have a MacBook Pro, retina, mid-2014 device,

I followed all the steps, including the installation of the Windows support software. After a long process, my device can now boot either in Windows or MacOS.

However (!!!) ...

... when first booting into Windows 10, the Windows 10 installation/startup code is run. Part way through that, it tries to go to the network, and it can't find the network. Therefore, the Windows 10 initialization fails and cannot complete, and so I have never been able to actually start up Windows 10. This means that I can't follow the instructions that I have found on line about how to correct network problems after starting Windows via bootcamp.

I have no trouble accessing the network when running on the same machine under MacOS.

How can I get my bootcamp-based Windows 10 to see the network, so its initialization can complete?

Thank you very much in advance.

PS: To be clear, after first booting into Windows 10, I am prompted for things like what country I'm in, what language I am using, what keyboard I want to use, etc. Then, the software continues with the Windows initialization process and eventually gets to a black screen upon which a message comes out saying that there is no network, and that it cannot continue. No option to correct this is offered, and there is nothing I can click on or enter, and my machine is essentially frozen. My only option at that point is to reboot into MacOS.

This is what I mean when I say that I can boot into Windows 10, but that the initialization of that OS fails due to the inability to access the network.

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  • What are " the instructions that I have found on line about how to correct network problems after starting Windows via bootcamp"? What is the model/year of your Mac? If you could not complete the initialization process, then how did you get to the point where you installed the Windows Support Software? I assume this is where Boot Camp and other windows drivers are installed. Dec 31, 2021 at 22:26
  • The instructions I'm referring to talk about going into an already running Window instance and setting up the network using some Windows facilities. But I don't have an already running Window instance yet. Also, I have a MacBook pro, 13-inch, retina, mid-2014 device.
    – HippoMan
    Dec 31, 2021 at 22:30
  • As for setting up the support software, that was one of the bootcamp options, and I selected it. When bootcamp was running, it printed messages saying that it was downloading and installing the Windows support software
    – HippoMan
    Dec 31, 2021 at 22:32
  • Did you download the latest 64 bit Windows 10 from Microsoft? Did the Boot Camp Assistant create a USB flash drive installer? Did the Boot Camp Assistant then boot the Mac from this USB flash drive installer? Dec 31, 2021 at 22:39
  • Yes, yes, and yes. Hmm ... should I perhaps redo all of this with Windows 7?
    – HippoMan
    Dec 31, 2021 at 22:40

2 Answers 2

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If the above answer doesn't work for you, you could click the tab on the left of the window that first says about the unidentified network which says "continue with limited setup". I did this yesterday when doing my own setup and eventually, once Windows is installed and you have entered your username, etc. Bootcamp then installed drivers for the network adaptors amongst other things. Wish I had taken screenshots of the process now.

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You can create "an already running Window instance" before you reach the point where you are having network problems. When you reach the screen shown below, enter the key combination control+shift+F3. You will enter Audit mode, which can take some time to complete on older Macs.

enter image description here

You should eventually see a desktop similar to what is shown below.

audit desktop

You now can configure your Windows installation, which can include installing Boot Camp and other Windows software provided by Apple. The installer provided by Apple may appear automatically or manually executed by running the Setup application in the BootCamp folder on the flash drive. Below is an example of the application. Your version may be different.

boot camp installer

When you wish to leave Audit mode and finish the Windows installation, set System Preparation Tool as shown below, then select the OK button. The "Window instance" is removed, but your changes will remain.

Note: The System Preparation Tool can be found at C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep\sysprep, which is shown below.

sysprep location

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