Possible Mac Newbie: Need to know about Parallels

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by NJRonbo, Jan 10, 2007.

  1. NJRonbo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #1
    I may be ready to buy my first Macintosh today. Going full-tilt
    with a mac pro 2.66 Dual Core and 2GB ram.

    I own a crapload of Windows programs. In fact, my entire business
    runs with Windows programs so essentially, I'll be buying a Mac to
    run Windows. This is fine as I am sure I'll slowly migrate over to
    Macintosh for some functions.

    I do not want to use boot camp.

    My entire Mac existence will rely upon Parallels. I have a few
    questions I hope that all of you will answer though I am sure it
    has all been answered countless times before....

    1. Is there a considerable slowdown either to the outside Mac or
    inside Windows environment using Parallels?

    2. Can I keep both environments (Mac and Parallels) running at
    the same time and switch between both? In other words, as a
    far out example, can I have my webcam outputting in MAC but
    use my Windows based Instant messenger in Parallels at the
    same time?

    3. Will Parallels run FULL SCREEN so it actually looks like I am
    on a PC computer?

    4. All my business is run through Microsoft Office. I want to keep
    my 2007 Windows version as I paid a premium to buy it. Can I
    effortlessly continue to run Windows Office under 2007 including
    using CONTACT for email and synching with my PDA?

    5. When you hook up a PDA or other device through USB that
    you want to use with PARALLELS, does it get recognized by the
    Mac OS to run on MAC or by Parallels? Some I want recognized
    by Parallels, some by Mac. Is there always an easy way to
    differentiate between the two?

    6. Great Question: Running Windows in Parallels under Mac.....do
    you get software conflicts and blue screen crashes associated with
    the problems you get on a PC -or- does the Mac environment help
    stabilize things?

    7. Will Parallels run Vista?

    8. Am I better off buying Parallels on CD with my Mac Pro or go
    to the Parallels website and download from them? I think downloading
    may give me the latest version that may be compatible with Vista.


    I know I asked a lot of questions. This is a huge purchase
    decision based on the fact that I am new to this OS and I am a
    power Windows user who needs to *slowly* migrate to Mac.

    Thanks in advance for your assistance.
     
  2. DavidLeblond macrumors 68020

    DavidLeblond

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #2
    Depends on the Mac. My 2.33GHz iMac with 2GB memory pretty much has no visible slowdown (I usually run Visual Studio inside of Parallels which runs like crap on my work PC)

    Yes.

    Yes. (that is if you tell it to, it can run in a window as well. The beta has a neat feature called coherence which will allow your Windows windows to co-exist among your OS X windows.)

    I know nothing about PDAs and Parallels as I don't have one, and I don't know about Office 2007 for sure because I don't have it. Office 2003, however, I can vouch for. It works perfectly.

    Again, no idea. sorry.

    Windows is just as stable inside Parallels as it is alone. The only difference is, when it blue screens (and I've seen it happen a few times) it will just take down the Parallels window and not the entire computer.

    Supposedly. But remember, unless you pay for the higher level Vistas the license will not allow you to run it in virtualization. But the lower level Vistas are worthless anyway so that shouldn't be a problem.

    I got the CD, but that copy is already obsolete. So yea, just download it.
     
  3. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #3
    Same here, on my 2 GHz Macbook (original CoreDuo) with 2 GB memory. One thing I'll add, though, is that my primary VM in Parallels runs XP Pro in 512 MB. When running Parallels along with a few other memory intensive apps in OS X, I've gotten into situations occasionally where I wished I had more memory (the Macbook is maxed out, so not an option there). This is purely an issue of how much memory the machine needs at that moment, and not a Parallels slowdown issue per se. For NJRonbo my comment is simply that you may consider getting more than 2 GB for your Mac Pro if you find that you need more memory within Windows, or if Parallels + everything else eats your 2 GB quickly. The nice thing about the Mac Pro is that you can try it with 2 and later add more if it's needed.

    Unfortunately, I too know little about device support within Parallels. Supposedly it's gotten better in the latest betas, and the most recent one apparently added USB 2 support. I haven't had a need to use that feature at all, but the latest beta has been stable for me otherwise since it came out.

    Good luck, and enjoy your new Mac. :)
     
  4. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #4
    I am guessing that the PREMIUM version will allow you to
    run under virtualization?
     
  5. blaster_boy macrumors 6502

    blaster_boy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2004
    Location:
    Belgium
    #5
    I would read up on the applications used in the forums here and at parallels, if you have time to do that. Most work, still some problems with usb devices I think.

    If you are still running your business from a windows computer, I would also recommend that you keep your pc around (and up-to-date!) for the time it takes you to migrate your apps to Mac and Parallels. I'm hoping that's what you meant with migrating slowly... More work but surest way not too lose anything.

    From what I read on the forums, Mac Pro users with multiple disks seem to have the most problems in using the latest parallels build, especially if they change the bootcamp options to move the partition to another disk. This will probably be fixed in the official release, but for now I would use the official production builds.

    Personally I wouldn't run my production environment on the latest parallels beta, as it is BETA software. The official builds are supposedly very stable though (but I don't use them, sorry I can't really confirm this).

    I run the latest parallels BETA 3 build and I am very happy with it on my imac dual core 2.16 with 2gig ram.

    In Parallels I run Windows XP Pro, 512MB Ram, 40 gig bootcamp partition with Office 2003 (visio and project as well) and everything 2D just 'works' and snappy too (my real windows pc is an old AMD 1,7 Ghz and a dual core just blows that away). Even 2D child games like putt-putt work fine in Parallels.

    Also for USB devices like smartphones, with the latest beta you can selectively enable which usb device you want to use (I did install one extra libusb package, but I'm not really sure that I actually needed it). Or you can set it to auto-enable so all usb devices are visible, your choice.

    For the moment only my QTEK 9100 is visible to windows via Active Sync and synchronises without any problems. I don't think mac os x sees it.
    In the parallels forum though I read that some PDA devices are not yet working.

    And other people already run VISTA in Parallels, so should be ok to work with.

    I bought my licence in the webshop, I think this will be the fastest way for you to start using it - just download either the latest official version or the beta version as you want.

    [Oh by the way, VMWARE has also released a BETA of their MAC OS X virtualisation product, which is free to use for the moment]

    I had one crash which caused my imac to block while parallels was running - I think it was caused by inserting a childrens cd game and then trying to eject it after realising I had inserted the wrong one. I think that Mac OS X tried to eject it while Windows was still trying to read it, and windows started showing it's hourglass and doing massive disk usage, and then my imac just froze. Nothing worked, not even my mouse.

    If you are running in a bootcamp partition this can have serious repercussions - I could no longer boot via Bootcamp into windows - I had to edit my boot.ini via Parallels (luckely that still worked) to add some wait time so I could choose another hardware profile on bootcamp, that fixed it. If you only use productivity application, you might use a virtual machine partition instead of bootcamp (or both, one as a test environment for example).

    But that was the only time so far.

    Me, I'm waiting for DirectX to be working so I can play 3D games - now that will be great (if it arrives). :D
     
  6. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #6
    No. You need Business or Ultimate for the EULA to grant you virtualization rights.

    B
     
  7. blaster_boy macrumors 6502

    blaster_boy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2004
    Location:
    Belgium
    #7
    How would Windows Vista find out that it is running under a virtualization software ?

    I'm interested in how that it would find that out....
     
  8. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #8
    My God that stinks!

    Just raised the price of the software I have to buy by another $150.
     
  9. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #9
    The video/etc... drivers used might be a dead giveaway :rolleyes:.

    As I understand it there's no technological impediment, just a legal/moral one since the EULA explicitly forbids it.

    B
     
  10. cool11 macrumors 65816

    cool11

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2006
    #10
    Can anyone tell me if parallels require a user-specific hard disk space, for use as a container?
    I mean do I have to tie-up hard disk space even if parallels and windows do not use all this hard disk space? Or this changes in a dynamic way?
     
  11. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #11
    It's dynamic. Much like a sparseimage.
     
  12. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #12
    Yep. And like a sparseimage, it doesn't automatically compress itself when stuff inside is deleted. Thankfully Parallels includes a compressor utility to do just that. So if you deleted a bunch of stuff inside your virtual machine, you use the utility to compress the disk image and reclaim that space on the OS X side.
     
  13. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #13
    New Question....
    '
    If I plan to use Parallels to run Windows do I need an antivirus
    for the Windows that is being emulated?

    Or, is the OS protected under the Mac environment?
     
  14. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Bergen, Norway
    #14
    I'm running Windows 2000 without AV, but XP nagged into downloading and installing some free scanner I found somewhere.

    You are not protected by the Mac, so if you have something on the virtual Windows disk(s) that needs protection and you plan to go online from the virtual machine, then - by all means - get protection.
     
  15. blaster_boy macrumors 6502

    blaster_boy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2004
    Location:
    Belgium
    #15
    You need to install an antivirus in Windows.

    I use AVG antivirus, free version from grisoft. Works quite well.
     
  16. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #16
    Question about printing in Windows via Parallels

    If I set up a wireless printer on my MAC will Windows under
    Parallels be able to share with that printer?

    In other words, do I need to set up a wireless printer under
    Windows as well as Mac or will Windows find the Mac printer
    I have already set up?
     
  17. jonnysods macrumors 601

    jonnysods

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2006
    Location:
    There & Back Again
    #17
    Hey, I'm about to get into the same boat, I'm buying an MBP to use at my office for video stuff on the OS side, but Office 2003, photoshop CS2, CorelDraw X3 etc on the Windows side. It would be amazing to not have to keep switching between the two. How do you think it will handle those apps? I'm going to get the 17" C2D? I would sure love to not have to reboot all the time for stuff and be able to use Final Cut without having to stop receiving emails for a few hours!
     
  18. Yoda47 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    Location:
    MI, USA
    #18
    That depends. When I got my Macbook Pro, I got Parelles free after rebate (from macconection.com). If you can get a deal like that, do it, otherwise just download it.
     
  19. NJRonbo thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    #19
    Question...

    I just sent up a wireless printer using AIRPORT.

    When Vista arrives and I install Parallels, can I share
    that wireless computer through Windows?

    In other words, if I want to print something in Windows
    will it be easy to point it to my wireless printer configured
    through mac os x?
     

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