VPC 5.0... is it slow?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by oldMac, Dec 6, 2001.

  1. oldMac macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 25, 2001
    #1
    I remember reading the VPC for OS X beta discussions a while back and seeing that Connectix went so far as to run an informal poll. They were pretty sure at the time that they would not be able to get the same kind of performance out of VPC under OS X that they were able to achieve under OS 9. That's not surprising given the memory model and other changes that they would have to work around (if they were able to get around them at all).

    Does anyone know if these hurdles were overcome? I notice that performance is NOT something that Connectix talks about in the VPC 5.0 press release.
     
  2. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #2
    I noticed that VPC 5 did not mention anything about performance!! I also heard that the G5 was supposed to be extrememly good at emulation!!! (Approx 70% performance of mac chip on pc)
     
  3. oldMac thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    what does that mean?

    What exactly does that mean: "really good at emulation"?

    I know a bit about processor design, and I can only think of a few things that would make a processor "really good at emulation".

    1) It's can perform lots of computations per second.
    - ie, it has a fast clock and a pipeline that's always full, and multiple int, float and vector units.

    2) It has extra instructions designed to make it easier to deal with the most common, complicated instructions of the target processor (the one we intend to emulate).

    3) It's bi-endian. Meaning it has modes for reading data in big-endian or little-endian mode and can switch very quickly between the two.

    4) It has a hardware decoder unit specifically designed for the target platform's microcode that then feeds the PPC core.

    Now, knowing what we know about PPC, items 1 and 3 are definitely true. Item 4 is definitely false unless IBM, Mot & Apple are holding a big surprise for us. It was rumored that IBM did indeed build and test item 4 at one time in the lab.

    Item 2 is probably the mostly likely addition to the PPC to enhance Intel emulation performance. But I doubt that Motorola would do this without a big push from Apple. It would complicate the processor design and potentially subtract from overall performance.

    Knowing what we know, I think it's unlikely that there will be significant emulation performance increase out of the G5 except for the regular performance advantage that the G5 has over the G4 (which could be significant).

    As for throwing out numbers like 70%... Well, you could probably justify a statement like that by executing a very simple PC program that you've heavily optimized for. You could also compare a similiarly clocked, but pipeline-starved Intel chip under certain circumstances.

    Real-world, there's no way we're going to see 70% of PC performance on a Mac with equal processor unless Connectix makes a $1 billion grant to Apple, Motorola and IBM.
     
  4. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #4
    Re: what does that mean?

    The following is a quote:

    The G5 will end this nonsense: in many tasks, there have been fourfold increases in integer and floating point performance.

    I read an article which I shall try and locate again + then post it up.
     
  5. evildead macrumors 65816

    evildead

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    #5
    I checked it out last night

    I got ahold of a copy of it and installed it last night. The first time you boot a windows system, it takes a while (need to configure new hardware). Then after that is ok.. I guess. Windows XP is slow as hell in VPC. I didnt make the XP image my self so there could be something wrong with it I supose. I will need to test it out some more. My Windows98 disk image runs about the same as it did with VPC 4.0. Over all the interface is very similar but the icons are cooler. I am going to need to play with it some more... it was late last night when I decided to install it. Anyone know if its a carbon app or if its pure OS X? I heard its carbon. I wonder why they did that... could be why its not taking full advantage of OS X and running a little slow. I was expecting a jump in proformance... but its the same as 4 leaning twards slower.

    Oh here is my system I was running it on:

    867Mgz G4
    1.2Gb RAM
    OS 10.1.1
     
  6. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #6
    Re: I checked it out last night

    I am 97% sure it is carbon + not coca
     
  7. Disdain macrumors member

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  8. dantec macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Carbon & Cocoa don't make a difference in speed related issues (very slightly). The reason Connectix used Carbon instead of Cocoa, is because it took them less time to actually convert all the Api's. With Cocoa you would have to rewrite the whole app from scratch, where as with carbon you can import it from another older OS 9 project.

    Carbon was normally developed to make apps that work with OS 9 & 10. But since it recycles code it much easier to use.

    Evildead are you talking about VPC 5?
     
  9. sjestus macrumors member

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    Florida
    #9
    It is about the same as VPC 4 except you can read DVD DATA. But OS X and OS 9 w/VPC run at about the same speed now. And you also have full screen mode in OS X, which is pretty nice. I would have to say it feels like a Pentium 133MHz.
     
  10. evildead macrumors 65816

    evildead

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    #10
    RE; dantec

    yes... I was talking about VPC 5. T just did a fresh install of Win2000 in VPC 5. It runs ok. Now that I have palyed with it more... I think it runs at about the same speed as Version 4. It aslo seems that doing a fresh install and crated a new Windows disk image with version 5 makes it run smoother. i dont know mmaybe its ust me. My new Win2000 image runs better than my 98 and XP images that I made with version 4. any one esle notice the same thing?

     
  11. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #11
    Re: RE; dantec

    What in your estimation is the equivalent pc speed?
     
  12. DannyZR2 macrumors 6502

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    Texas
    #12
    Re: RE; dantec

    I noticed that too evildead,

    When I first ran my VPC 4 image of 2000pro on VPC5 in OS X, it took forever!!! I had to wait quite a substantially longer amount of time to get it to come up.. but after a couple restarts of it and adding more RAM, 384MB, to the VPC, then it started to get back to previous speeds. However, notice that VPC5 will also install in OS 9, not just 10.. this is very nice.. I did the install in 9 as well, and it does seem faster..... this tells me that it is not written in 10 as well as it should be. Should 10 be faster? if the code is written well?

    Overall, I have win98, 2000pro, and NT4, and I'd say that NT4 is the quickest, snappiest, but if you need to do anything other than network with your VPC, 2000pro is the way to go, it is almost as fast, but has the compatibility that NT4 doesn't. 98 is the worst that I have, i suppose 95 works better, but no USB support.. (gotta have second edition of 98, or 2000)

    I'd say do the upgrade.... it is worth it

    I haven't done the DVD support test, anyone else? I wondered if the "enhanced features" that you see on DVD's will work.... (they all say they are not supported in the MAC..)

     
  13. ThlayliTheFierce macrumors regular

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    #13
    Tell me this...

    I'm wondering about network compatibility. Anyone had problems interfacing with Microsoft networks? Or is it really like using a regular windows machine? Any software problems?
     
  14. mac15 macrumors 68040

    mac15

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    Sydney
    #14
    windows sucks

    windows is crap
    its already to slow
    its probably faster on a mac anyway

    windows xp pro runs okay
    on my g4 867,1gb ram
     
  15. Ensign Paris macrumors 68000

    Ensign Paris

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    Europe
    #15
    VPC5 and Powerbook

    Any experience with VPC5, OSX.12 and a PB667?

     
  16. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #16
    Windows OS?

    Which windows OS is the quickest when running Virtual PC v.5 and why?
     
  17. PyroTurtle macrumors regular

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    #17
    Win98 SE is the fastest OS i've seen in VPC from version 3 on up to 5
    And actually i have an ME disk on my 867 Tower and it runs very well too, quite scary i thought....
    but 98 SE is the fastest i've seen with 2000 bittign at the heels...
    as for why, it's cause 98 SE has the least requiresments of procesor and RAM...for the mac heads that know about PeeC's i got Win98 to run on a 386 and surf the internet...
    summery: Windows 98 Second Edition is fastest due to the fact that it doesn't need a very powerful machine to run it, and VPC doesn't emulate a very powerful machine, thus it's fast
    note: Windows 98 SE is the fastest Win OS on my Ti as well, and 2000 is way way back there, but on the tower 98 SE and 2000 aren't as far apart
     
  18. Falleron macrumors 68000

    Falleron

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    #18
    Windoze OS

    Cheers, I asked because I read somewhere a while back that windows 2000 was quicker (something to do with being a true 32bit OS??). Like you said, I would expect windows 98 to be quicker because it its older.
     
  19. chmorley macrumors 6502a

    chmorley

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    Denver, CO
    #19
    MacWindows article

    There are two articles at MacWindows that address this issue. Connectix seems to believe that VPC will never be as fast in OS X as it was in OS 9 and earlier. They actually state that this is because of how OS X distributes processor resources.

    Here is part of the first article. This link will lead you to another article with some head to head comparisons of different Windoze OS's running in OS 9 and X. They also have a different opinion of whether or not it matters that VPC 5 is carbon.

    For what it's worth...

    CJM
     
  20. evildead macrumors 65816

    evildead

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    #20
    office

    interesting... I didnt know that MS Office was a carbon app.
     
  21. chmorley macrumors 6502a

    chmorley

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    #21
    Re: office

    Me neither, but it would explain why it is less responsive than Office 2001 is in OS 9. It also makes sense why Carbon apps in general would be somewhat less responsive--they have greater overhead ("extra" or unoptimized code).

    CJM
     
  22. Kid Red macrumors 65816

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    Dec 14, 2001
    #22
    Re: Re: RE; dantec

    Well, it says my iBook is a Pll. It is dog slowwwwww, waste of $.
     
  23. scar_ace macrumors newbie

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    Jan 13, 2002
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    London, England
    #23
    Has anyone tried booting classic and opening VPC pre version 5 to try run 3 OSs back to back? Probably won't work unless you're on some super-er computer.
    Also wasn't version 5 optimised for multi-processors?
     
  24. Gelfin macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #24
    I'm using a PBG4 667 with VPC5, and it runs Win2K acceptably. Not fast, mind you. It's slower than any machine I would actually run Windows on natively, in fact, but that's sort of what you'd expect from emulation.

    VPC on OS 9 was the best you could possibly expect because it can literally take over all system resources for itself. The inability of any process to do that is a very good thing about OS X, even though it necessarily has an impact on VPC's performance. That impact will always be there no matter how much cooperation Connectix gets from Apple, or how many undocumented APIs (or whatever) they get access to.

    Comparing VPC's performance to iTunes or Quicktime isn't really fair, because while these are both somewhat high-impact applications, they aren't even in the same league as emulating a whole system. Besides which, altering a process' priority level is not some "secret undocumented API." Open a terminal window and type 'man renice' and you too can be in on the secret.

    I've gone so far as doing software development on VPC5/Win2K, and it gets the job done. I wouldn't use it as my regular Windows machine, but if I'm on the road it'll do.
     
  25. sr macrumors newbie

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    Sep 21, 2001
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    UK
    #25
    Its incredible that this discussion is actually taking place. So many Mac nuts live in cloud cuckoo land it is unbelievable. I prefer macs to pcs but I don't lie about mac performance. Have you chaps tried doing real work on VPC? Or even launching applications in VPC 4 under 9.2.2 (let alone 5)? IT IS SLOOOOOOOOW.

    Re carbon applications : all the office X suite - all of them word, excel etc are slow to launch and compute in compared to the performance of office applications in PCs. My powerbook gets "blown away" by my pIII desktop and PII laptop. So please, lets get a grip. Macs are great, and I prefer for them for a variety of reasons. But they are not fast. (Except for doing the gaussian blur in photoshop of course as per apple analysis.......)
     

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