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Old Nov 19, 2012, 11:10 AM   #1
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Base-Config Mac Mini with VMWare

Will the base configuration mac mini (upgraded to 16GB crucial RAM) run VMWare with Windows 7/8 on 2 monitors run well??

- I will not be running any games on it
- I will be running Lightroom 3 on windows (thru VMWare)
- I will be using iMovie (nothing fancy though, just basic trims, etc)
- both monitors are 1080p and 2-year olds
- 80% of the time is just running YouTube videos on it

I am mainly worried about the integrated graphics (or should I be worried about something else too?). So, will the base-config mac mini work well for me?

Thanks!
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 11:44 AM   #2
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Make sure you install the 64-bit version of Windows and give any virtual machine 4+ GB of RAM and they should run fine.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 11:53 AM   #3
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i'd boot straight into windows to do that setup. i'd give all 16gb to it that way!
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 01:05 PM   #4
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Will the base configuration mac mini (upgraded to 16GB crucial RAM) run VMWare with Windows 7/8 on 2 monitors run well??
You won't get much in the way of graphics acceleration in a VM anyway, regardless of what GPU you have so I doubt it would make any difference. Even if it does the HD 4000 isn't too bad for an integrated solution and much, much better than Intel's previous integrated GPUs.

You are definitely going to need that 16 GB of RAM, and I'd consider giving 6 GB to the virtual machine. The VM software will take up a bit of the MAC's memory space so with a 50/50 split (8 GB for the VM) the mac ends up with less than half of the usable memory.

If you can push your budget, the i7 with twice as many cores, hyperthreading and twice as much on-chip cache will make a noticeable difference. If you were running the Mac version of Lightroom it wouldn't be as much of a big deal, but with the VM overhead as well it's worth serious consideration.

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Old Nov 19, 2012, 03:10 PM   #5
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Well, I think I can use my LR3 license on Windows with the mac version as long as I don't use them at the same time (or maybe at all). At least I know people have done it and Adobe seem to be okay with it, but that's for another topic altogether.

While I'm not cash-strapped at the moment, $200 is still not a small amount even for the i7 cpu and its inherent advantages over i5. At this point I'm inclined to just wait for the base iMac and see what it offers me.

As for VMware/Parallels, are they even worth it? Particularly with Windows 8? Any potential issues I should be looking into?

Thanks for the replies guys.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 04:24 PM   #6
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Well, I think I can use my LR3 license on Windows with the mac version as long as I don't use them at the same time (or maybe at all). At least I know people have done it and Adobe seem to be okay with it, but that's for another topic altogether.

While I'm not cash-strapped at the moment, $200 is still not a small amount even for the i7 cpu and its inherent advantages over i5. At this point I'm inclined to just wait for the base iMac and see what it offers me.

As for VMware/Parallels, are they even worth it? Particularly with Windows 8? Any potential issues I should be looking into?

Thanks for the replies guys.
Take it from someone who uses a VM on a 2011 Base mini with only the dual core processor as well, if you are planning on running VM's on it, then get the Mid-Mini with the quad core processor. You can dedicate multiple processors then to the VM and OSX..... Dual cores just aren't VM friendly in my opinion. It will leave both OS's wanting more processing power.
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 04:56 PM   #7
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It will leave both OS's wanting more processing power.
Thanks for pointing this out. That's is what I'm most worried about. So basically as long as I upgrade the ram and the cpu, I'm good? Nothing to worry about the HD4000? This is for a system that will always run 2 monitors, windows8 thru VM, and occasional LR3 and iMovie?
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Old Nov 19, 2012, 08:46 PM   #8
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Thanks for pointing this out. That's is what I'm most worried about. So basically as long as I upgrade the ram and the cpu, I'm good? Nothing to worry about the HD4000? This is for a system that will always run 2 monitors, windows8 thru VM, and occasional LR3 and iMovie?
No the GPU will not be a bottleneck for all of that. The GPU in my (now sold) 2011 Mac Mini was fine for VM and all of that stuff and it was about half as powerful as the HD4000. I told my Mac Mini because i picked up the Mac Pro (used) and use that for all my VM work...
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 12:22 AM   #9
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Thanks for pointing this out. That's is what I'm most worried about. So basically as long as I upgrade the ram and the cpu, I'm good? Nothing to worry about the HD4000? This is for a system that will always run 2 monitors, windows8 thru VM, and occasional LR3 and iMovie?
For this consideration, I bought a 2011 2.5 Mini with Radeon 6630M GPU. Notebookcheck gives the Radeon an average Mark11 score of 1000 versus 617 for the HD4000 over a range of platforms.

http://www.notebookcheck.net/AMD-Rad...M.43963.0.html

Also note the HD4000 and 2012 Mini are exhibiting a yet-to-be-resolved "blackout" and "snow" issue with the HDMI port. So be aware of that if you're going to use the HDMI port.

https://discussions.apple.com/messag...23456#20336117

Last edited by calvol; Nov 20, 2012 at 01:19 AM.
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 12:25 AM   #10
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Actually, the base i5 supports hyperthreading. Not sure why folks think it doesn't.
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 07:04 AM   #11
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Actually, the base i5 supports hyperthreading. Not sure why folks think it doesn't.
Hypertheading does not equal real cores. From a VM standpoint, I want real cores and not fake ones. No one said it didn't have hyperthreading.
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 10:22 AM   #12
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Hypertheading does not equal real cores. From a VM standpoint, I want real cores and not fake ones. No one said it didn't have hyperthreading.
I have to conmfess I thought it didn't, and I think I implied it when I listed it as a plus for the i7. I knew the i5 in the iMac doesn't have HT and assumed the mobile i5 in the Mini didn't either. So mea culpa.

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Old Nov 20, 2012, 02:06 PM   #13
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- I will be using iMovie (nothing fancy though, just basic trims, etc)
Out of curiosity. Why? You've got iMovie in OSX...
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 04:44 PM   #14
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Out of curiosity. Why? You've got iMovie in OSX...
Yes, it does. That is why I'm using it. Not sure what you mean?
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 05:20 PM   #15
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Yes, it does. That is why I'm using it. Not sure what you mean?
I understood from your OP that you wanted Windows in order to -amongst other stuff- use iMovie. My bad!
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:39 AM   #16
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Okay, in general terms, how is the ATI Radeon 4650 (discrete graphics I configured with an HP pc almost 3 years ago) compared to the HD4000? I know the 4650 is supposed to be a low-end dedicated graphics and that the HD4000 is supposed to be much improved compared to previous integrated solutions. But are they at least comparable?
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:26 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by iPhoneMBAUser View Post
Will the base configuration mac mini (upgraded to 16GB crucial RAM) run VMWare with Windows 7/8 on 2 monitors run well??

- I will not be running any games on it
- I will be running Lightroom 3 on windows (thru VMWare)
- I will be using iMovie (nothing fancy though, just basic trims, etc)
- both monitors are 1080p and 2-year olds
- 80% of the time is just running YouTube videos on it

I am mainly worried about the integrated graphics (or should I be worried about something else too?). So, will the base-config mac mini work well for me?

Thanks!
Nope if you are going to run LR thru VMWAre on macmini I'd say you are better off getting proper Windows Desktop like XPS8500 from dell. They are going to be selling it for $699 and you will spend less time waiting in front of monitor and more time getting things done. I'd highly recommend getting i7 version instead. Also keep in mind if you've Lr3 on windows you could always call Adobe and they will let you switch platform from win to mac for one time for nominal cost of like $10 or for free.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 12:03 PM   #18
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Nope if you are going to run LR thru VMWAre on macmini I'd say you are better off getting proper Windows Desktop like XPS8500 from dell.
Nonsense... I have a client running Windows 7 via Fusion on a 2010 Core2Duo Mini with 8GB RAM. She is running myriad apps including Dragon Dictate and other demanding apps without any problems. So an i5 or i7 Mini with 16GB RAM will have no problem running Windows via VM or Bootcamp.
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