How to Switch From Windows to Mac

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The battle between Mac and Windows Operating Systems is one that will probably run till the end of time. It's a constant race of who will come up with the next revolutionary technology first and grab the largest piece of the market share while at it. If you already own a Mac, chances are your opinion is already biased toward Apple. And sure enough, backed with sleek, opulent designs and its smooth, user-friendly, operating system you'd be right to say that it holds its own,

But even for the avid Mac supporter, there's no denying that Windows also has its share of perks. The most profound is that Windows is compatible with more applications and software. And for this reason, it is generally more preferred for gaming and business applications.

However, the good news is that there's a way you can have the best of both worlds. Thanks to all things' technology, you easily install Windows on your Mac using Mac's built-in Boot Camp Assistant or third-party software like Parallels. And then switch from Windows to Mac whenever you please.

How to switch from Windows to Mac without Parallels

As mentioned, there are multiple ways for switching from PC to Mac. For starters, we shall go over how to do it after installing Windows using Boot Camp.

For this, there are generally three ways to make the switch. Let's break it down,

  1. Windows to Mac
  2. Mac to Windows
  3. Switch with Restart

Windows to Mac

  1. In the bottom right corner of the screen, click on the up arrow to reveal hidden icons.
  2. Click on the Boot Camp icon (it looks like a black diamond).
  3. Choose the "Restart in OS X."

Mac to Windows

  1. Open "System Preferences."
  2. Select the "Startup Disk" from the panel.
  3. Choose Windows.
  4. Click "Restart."

Should these two processes fail, follow the Switch with restart procedure below.

Switch with Restart

Switch to restart is basically when you make the switch as your computer boots up. Make sure you have read all the instructions BEFORE you proceed with this option. Let's take a look

If you are switching from Windows:

  1. Open the start menu at the bottom left of your screen with the Windows icon.
  2. Click on the "power" icon.
  3. Choose "restart."

If you are switching from Mac:

  1. Click the apple icon at the top left corner of the screen.
  2. Click "restart."

As the computer is restarting …

  1. Hold down one of the options keys until your screen turns grey.
  2. Choose the operating system you want to use by double-clicking on it.
  3. Wait as it boots up.

In case you want your computer to always start in a particular OS, simply;

  1. Choose the partition you want by clicking once to select it.
  2. Hold down the Control key. This will make the arrow below the icon turn into a circular arrow.
  3. While holding down the Control key, double-click the partition you want to switch to.
  4. The computer will always restart in the specific operating system.
  5. Follow the same procedure to switch again.

In some cases, as you switch using this method, a padlock may appear after the computer restarts. If this happens to you, do not panic. Simply take your computer over to Support Central to have the firmware password removed.

How to switch from Windows to Mac with Parallels

While switching using the above methods still works, it is not exactly the most convenient method. This is mostly because you have to switch your Mac off every time you want to make a switch. For a much easier experience, we recommend using Parallels.

The application is made so that you can not only make the switch instantly, but you can also run the two Operating systems simultaneously.

Once you have installed Parallels, making the switch is easy. The main thing you should consider is the Parallels Desktop view mode you are using at the moment. Then the rest is easy.

Depending on your view mode, you could choose between any of these;

1. Window mode

Here, Windows runs on your Mac screen in a separate window (kind of the way and normal application would run). To make the switch, you simply need to move your cursor and click the window of the OS you want to use.

2. Full screen mode

Under this mode, the operating system that is running at the time fills the entire screen. To switch between them, the best way would be by using the three-finger swipe on the trackpad, and swipe right.

3. Coherence Mode

With this mode, both operating systems run side-by-side on the Mac desktop. To make the switch, you need to click inside the window of the OS you want to use, just like using two Mac applications.

In all the modes, you can also employ the use of the Mac Dock or the macOS App Switcher.


As you've seen, there are many ways of switching from Windows to Mac, and you can go with whichever you find easier. Still, remember that with Parallels, you don't have to reboot your system to make a switch. And if it is something you intend to do regularly, then this would by far be the easiest way to do it. To download, check out the Parallels website.