Setup & Software Discussions
2014 Mac Mini [4th,2C,U] + RX 480 @ 16Gbps-TB2 (Highpoint Rocketstor 6361A) + m...

2014 Mac Mini [4th,2C,U] + RX 480 @ 16Gbps-TB2 (Highpoint Rocketstor 6361A) + macOS 10.12.4 & Win10 [MacFreekDotKext]  


Eminent Member
Joined: 2 years ago

20170525 113500


I am running Windows build 16193 (Redstone 3) on a portable SSD as Windows to go. And macOS Sierra 10.12.4.

Windows to Go was created using EasyUEFI's wintousb program.

I have previously used Windows 8.1 to success and 10 which needed DSDT override. I tried flashing my RX 480 to RX 580 which was successful, though wasn't stable and caused my card driver to crash oftwn, and the performance increase was abysmal with absolutely no other benefits gained from the flash.

This is a guide on how i get Windows 16193 working successfully with RX 480:

1. Leave Thunderbolt cable unplugged from Mac before turning it on.

2. Press option to load Windows to go Portable SSD Windows 10 16193 build.

3. Enter DIY eGPU Setup 1.35 with iGPU connected only. Configure it as:

  • Press 3 to enter Menu based setup
  • PCI Compaction 》 Legacy mode checked 》 Closeunusedbridges checked 》 ignore none 》 Endpoint 》 56.25GB-36bit 》 Run compact 》 iGPU 》 force iGPU to 32-bit
  • Chainload mbr
  • Select Windows 10  from OS selection menu
  • As soon as the Windows logo comes up hotplug eGPU. When OS is about to load up, change display output to Displayport.



Every time you want this do be done automatically, reboot into DIY eGPU  Setup 1.35 and hit ENTER (or allow 10s countdown to do it for you) on the default option 2 "automated startup via startup.bat".


Hardware pics

20170525 113625

Use paperclip trick to get PSU turned on without motherboard.

20170525 113640

Two molex connectors from psu to rocketstor 6361a molex connections. To give power to 6361a motherboard

20170525 113701

8 Pin pcie connectors to GPU. And chassis bent to fit RX 480

20170525 114023

RX 480.

20170525 113911

Modified back of chassis to allow Displayport connection into GPU while GPU can be screwed firm into chassis

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.

itsage, Zetthard, 3RYL and 2 people liked
Active Member
Joined: 2 years ago

Man, I love your setup! Its so minimalistic!) Just the monitor in front of you, little Mac mini on one side and naked RX 480 on the other!)  Awesome) Would be even more badass with some RGB card like Nitro+ or Strix!

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts

Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago

Hi @jatechnology, I know this is a very old post but it is one of the few I have seen with a similar setup to mine. I also have a 2014 Mac mini and an AMD RX580 with a Sonnet Breakaway Box. Would you be able to provide a bit more info as to how you got Windows 10 and DIY eGPU Setup 1.35 installed on your external SSD?

I want to do a similar setup and have an external SSD. I got Windows 10 installed on it just fine using Easy UEFI, but when I ran DIY eGPU Setup 1.35 I received an error, stating that I had to have Windows on an MBR partition.

The problem is, Mac is UEFI and won't boot an MBR partition (to my knowledge). How did you get around this? Could you provide some more steps as to how you got Windows 10 and DIY eGPU Setup 1.35 working on your external SSD? Did you make partitions beforehand on your SSD somehow?

Any help would be appreciated, as using DIY eGPU Setup 1.35 seems to be the only way I will be able to get my setup working. Thanks!

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts

Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago

Hey Acronychal, did you get yours working as I am just in the process of trying to get mine going in boot camp as it works in OSX now. Any tips or tricks?

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts

Eminent Member
Joined: 2 years ago

To get MBR working with External SSD, you must completely wipe your drive clean with diskpart -> select disk X -> "clean" and convert
to MBR partition scheme. Next you must create primary partitions: 1 for your C local drive and 1 for 350MB EFI partition.

Now when creating Windows to Go drive with EasyUEFI you must select legacy and choose C local drive partition for boot/main partitions do not select the 350 MB partition.
And now you will head to CMD and type the following command:
bcdboot.exe C:\Windows /s X: /f ALL (X for EFI partition drive letter)

This will make EFI boot files on your 350MB partition on Windows to Go drive so that you can boot the Windows on MBR drive.

To get macOS sierra and Windows 10 dualbooted in MBR i had to make a usb drive using Sierra MBR Patch
and i do remember needing to install Windows to Go first as you need to use Windows disk management to shrink Windows partition to create macOS partition, mac installer disk utility wont work with this windows to go dual booting method.
You must format macOS partition in WIndows as NTFS partition otherwise you will get disk unit size errors in macOS installer disk utility when erasing the macOS partition for macOS extended journaled.

I have yet to list my system & eGPU hardware or link a build guide in my signature. I will do so soon to give context to my posts.

Active Member
Joined: 1 year ago

Hi @jatechnology, thank you so much for your detailed and helpful reply! I really appreciate you taking the time to respond and I am sorry my thanks is so late. 

To give an update on my progress for any who may be interested, I followed @jatechnology's advice but was constantly stuck with installing Windows 10 or 8.1 on an external SSD. I got to the point where Windows restarted but hung at the "getting devices ready" screen. I tried many Windows ISO files and tricks I found online to get through this, but in the end the only thing that would work for me was formatting my external SSD as MBR per @jatechnology's instructions and then installing Windows in a virtual machine using these instructions

I was successful, however I ran into multiple problems getting the eGPU Setup working. Nando was super helpful with trying to help me resolve my problem, but whenever he helped me solve a problem another one came up. In the end I could not get eGPU Setup working on my external SSD even though Windows 10 was installed in MBR.

I don't know why I was unsuccessful, as I followed all of the instructions @jatechnology gave above as well as the advice of Nando and other threads on this forum.

Anyway, I was spending so much of my free time getting this to work in the end I decided it wasn't worth it. Before I gave up, I ran into this thread as another way to install Windows on an external SSD but in UEFI mode. This means I wouldn't be able to use Nando's eGPU Setup, but I thought if I could get Windows installed in UEFI on an external SSD without needing to go through a VM and without the installation process getting stuck at "getting devices ready," maybe something would work out differently.

So I gave it one last shot. The directions in that thread (including following the updated instructions by @chocomonsters) allowed me to successfully install Windows 10 on an external SSD without a VM and no hung "getting devices ready" screen. After Windows 10 was installed, I turned off my 2012 Mac mini, plugged in my eGPU, turned the mini back on, selected Windows EFI to boot, and my eGPU was recognized with no problems and without error 12!! I installed the drivers without a problem and the eGPU worked great. Finally.

I decided to try it with my 2015 11-inch MacBook Air. It also worked perfectly, though I had to plug in the eGPU right when the little loading circle animation comes up in the Windows 10 boot. Doing this and the eGPU also worked perfectly on my 2015 MacBook Air!

Lastly I tried to get it to work on my 2016 non-TB MacBook Pro. Alas, it was not meant to be. I tried both boot procedures I used with the mini and MacBook Air. Turning on the MacBook Pro with the eGPU plugged in resulted in a black screen that never goes away. Plugging the eGPU in to the MBP when Windows loads (at the same time as I did so with the MacBook Air) results in Windows seeing the eGPU but again an error 12. 

I've tried almost everything to resolve error 12 on my 2016 non-touch bar MacBook Pro: DSDT override, plugging the eGPU in at various stages of boot, Nando's eGPU Setup, apple_set_os.efi, disabling multiple devices in the device manager in multiple orders (and re-enabling them), and others. Nothing works. It is frustrating because there is a thread here on this site by @theITsage that says simply disabling the FaceTime/isight camera resolves error 12 (the guide says: "If error 12 arises, simply disabling the connection to the iSight camera would resolve it.").

I can confirm this is NOT TRUE for all 2016 13-inch non-touchbar MBPs. Disabling the FaceTime camera does nothing to resolve error 12 on my 2016 non-touch bar MBP. Perhaps it is because I have a different configuration (16GB RAM/512SSD) or an issue with only the Windows build that @theITsage working, but this does not resolve error 12 for my MBP (I think the fact that it does not work for all 2016 MBPs should be noted in the guide).

I'd like to note that I also installed a 3GB Nvidia 1050 in my enclosure to see if that made a difference. It worked fine on my Mac mini and MacBook Air but again I received an error 12 on my 2016 MBP.

There are a few things I haven't tried to resolve error 12 on my 2016 MBP, such as using rEFInd, but I've decided to give up. It is no longer worth my time and effort now that I have it working on my 2012 mini and 2015 MBA, even tough they are missing out on the speed of thunderbolt 3.

Also, I'm thinking to pick up a new mini to test how that works with an eGPU in Mac and Windows. If it doesn't give me any error 12 problems, I will sell my 2012 mini and 2015 MacBook Air and use the new mini for any gaming and just use my MacBook Pro on the road. In a few years I will get a new MacBook Pro, which will hopefully not have all of the error 12 issues so I can go back to using a single computer setup. I've read that 2017+ MacBook Pros already have a large memory area and seem to have fewer error 12 problems in Windows.

Apologies for the long post and thanks to all who helped me! In the end I was successful with my mini and MBA, which was very gratifying after many hours of failure. This is a great community and I really appreciate all the work everyone has done here.

Pending: Add my system information and expected eGPU configuration to my signature to give context to my posts

Noble Member
Joined: 3 years ago

Great long post! Look forward hearing how there new Mac mini works with eGPUS.

Reg error 12 - I have spent over a year trying to beat it with my 2017 and various AMD cards and was only successful with one build of the new EFI Bootloader USB stick. The auto instal version (most recent release) doesn't work for me, but the one prior to it does.

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