It may seem like mixing oil and water, but as it turns out, installing Windows on your Mac isn't a violation of natural law--your Retina display won't melt or anything!
In fact, doing so is actually a relatively pain-free process. To give the Windows 10 Technical Preview--a very early pre-release version of Windows 10--a whirl, you don't even have to pay for a Windows license or already have Windows on your Mac. The Technical Preview is free to test.
Intrigued? Let's dig in.
There are two ways to get the Windows 10 Preview on your Mac.
The first is to install Windows on a separate partition of your hard drive using Apple's built-in Boot Camp software. When finished you can boot directly into Windows, essentially transforming your Mac into a full-blown Windows PC.
Another option lets you run Windows as a virtual machine inside an OS X program. We'll be using the open-source VirtualBox from Oracle, though Parallels Desktop is a popular alternative (it costs about $80). A virtual is the route we recommend, given that the Windows 10 Technical Preview is still in very early form, with the occasional rough edge or bugginess popping up. If something goes wrong on a virtual machine, it won't affect your hardware or OS X installation--you can just wipe it and start over.
As with any pre-release software, one person's experience may vary with another's. Mine was pretty issue-free: I installed Windows 10 on a late 2014 MacBook Pro with a 2.6Ghz i5 processor with 8GB of RAM. Any Mac released in recent memory should be able to run Windows 10 just fine.
Whatever you do, back up your Mac's data first. Didn't you hear the part about the Windows 10 Technical Preview being very early experimental software? You don't want to lose all your valuable documents and family videos if Microsoft's OS hiccups.
Download the ISO
Done backing up? Good. First we'll head to the Windows 10 download site to download the Technical Preview. You'll have to sign up for the Windows Insider Program by giving Microsoft your email address.
After registering--note all the warnings about this being pre-release software, and Microsoft's stern warnings about backing up your data--select the version of Windows 10 that's right for your particular system. If you're running a relatively recent Mac with an Intel processor, opt for the 64-bit version. It's nearly 4GB, so get comfy--the download may take a while. Jot down the product key, too; we didn't need it in our testing but it's a good thing to keep in your back pocket just in case.
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.