Any good reason to set up BootCamp? rMBP / 256GHz / 16GB memory

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Broadus, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. Broadus macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I have purchased but not yet installed Windows 8 on my recently-purchased reburbished rMBP, transitioning to Apple after 25-plus years with Microsoft OS's. I have one academic/research program, NotaBene, that I need to run via Windows and probably not much else. I even moved from Office 2010 for Windows to Office 2011 for Mac.

    I had initially considered setting up BootCamp and installing Windows 8 there, but I'm unsure about how much space I need to allot to BootCamp. I understand that I need at least 20GB for Windows 8 and then some extra space for programs.

    Because I really don't want to have unused space in BootCamp (having only 256GB total), I was thinking about ordering VMware Fusion, forgetting BootCamp, and running Windows programs in the OS X environment (I realize I could do that even though Windows 8 is installed in BootCamp, but there is the whole issue of guessing how much precious SSD to allot to BootCamp).

    So, how much advantage is there to setting up BootCamp anyway, given my usages? If you recommend BootCamp, how much would space would you allot for it?

    Or would you forget BootCamp and just run Windows programs virtually?

    BTW, I do not play games on my computer.

    Thanks for your help. I've read lots of threads on this but am having trouble nailing down the best way to proceed.
     
  2. alyshehata macrumors member

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    Jun 13, 2012
    #2

    It's very simple to change the bootcamp partition size. Google it and you should fine tutorials. I currently have 100 GB for bootcamp (for gaming) and the ~120 GB left for my mac is more than enough. Also, portable hard disk FTW.
     
  3. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

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    #3
    Have you considered using VMware fusion or Parallels. That one program you want to run sounds like the perfect candidate.
     
  4. Quackers macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    In my opinion it would be better to get the size right first time.
    I didn't and ended up buying Camptune in order to resize the partitions and it made a total hash of everything and I had to re-install it all.
     
  5. Broadus thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I realize that got lost in the long and meandering post, but I mentioned VMware Fusion. :)

    The question is whether to set up Windows 8 in BootCamp and run it with VMware Fusion or forget about Bootcamp and just use VMware Fusion.
     
  6. Mike Boreham, Oct 11, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2013

    Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

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    #6
    You definitely don't need Bootcamp. Compared to Parallels, Bootcamp is a whole lot of hassle, installing and backing up, restoring, drivers, partition restrictions, expanding, shrinking etc.

    I used Bootcamp for years thinking I didn't want to accept the inferior virtualised Parallels, and wanting the last ounce of speed etc. Reality is that Parallels has improved massively since the early days and unless you are a serious gamer is more than adequate, especially on an SSD. It was such a relief when I switched to Parallels.

    Parallels can be an expanding disk so no need to commit to a size in advance. Much easier to back up and restore.

    I have no experience of VMware but all my comments should apply equally to it.

    EDIT: Just for info, my Windows 7 Performance index is:

    Processor 7.4
    Memory RAM 7.6
    Graphics 6.6
    Gaming Graphics 6.6
    Primary Hard disk 6.5

    (These are out of a max of 7.9)

    Early 2011 MBP, with Fusion Drive. 16 Gb RAM
     
  7. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

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    #7
    Unless you want to run some 3d games in windows on your mac I see no reason to install bootcamp. I use VMware Fusion and have had no issues with it.

    The advantage bootcamp has is that it runs windows as fast as it runs OSX. The downside is that you have to restart you machine to boot from windows to osx and from osx to windows. That can be a pain if you need to jump back and forth between the two.

    The advantage VMware Fusion has is that it is just another program under OSX. When you want to use the program you mentioned you start it just like you'd do to any other app. You can even run windows programs at the same time you are running OSX app.
    The downside to VMware Fusion is that windows is emulated in software. It is not as fast as using bootcamp. It is still pretty fast and unless you are running a high end game won't notice it.
     
  8. Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

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    #8
    All good stuff, good points about ease of file sharing which I didn't mention...just to nit-pick...Windows is virtualised not emulated in Parallels and VMWare. Big difference. Emulation is what the old Connectix Virtual PC from pre-Intel days did, and that really was paralytic.

    When Apple switched to Intel in 2006 it opened the way for Windows to make direct use of the processor, but of course some of the processor still has to run the Mac

    I think a lot of people who haven't tried Parallels or VM Ware associate them with emulation and slowness.
     
  9. Quackers macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    I have Ubuntu currently running as a guest OS in VMware Fusion and to be honest if I run it for an hour or two all of my ram gets used and it ends up slowing down both OSX and the vm. Even shutting down the vm doesn't free up the ram and a reboot is necessary.
    This is the way it was when I was running Windows 7 in a vm as well.

    Personally I would use either BootCamp (with all its downside) or install Windows to its own partition without using BootCamp at all. The latter not being supported by Apple for some unknown reason.

    Actually I'm currently running Windows in its own partition as an EFI booting system (so I get to have as many partitions as I want with no silly hybrid mbr).
     
  10. Yahooligan macrumors 6502a

    Yahooligan

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    Illinois
    #10
    Another couple of options...

    1) Use Oracle VirtualBox for a Windows VM, it's free. Not that Parallels or VMware Fusion are expensive, but sometimes you don't need all of the extra features of a commercial app.

    2) Use Codeweaver's "CrossOver." This doesn't require a VM or full, actual Windows install (or license) and Nota Bene does run with it - http://www.codeweavers.com/compatibility/browse/name/?app_id=11665

    There is a free trial for CrossOver so you could try it out without much hassle and without cracking open your copy of Windows 8.
     
  11. Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

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    #11
    Lots of RAM is a good thing, but I have not seen this behaviour with Windows 7 and Parallels. You can control how much RAM Windows uses.
     
  12. Broadus thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 26, 2011
    #12
    Purchase on VMware site?

    Is the VMware site the only or best place to purchase Fusion 6?

    If I understand this correctly, I need to install VMware Fusion before I install Window 8. Is that correct?

    Thanks.
     
  13. Quackers macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    It's not the guest OS that uses the ram as that's limited to 2.5GB or thereabouts. It seems to cause OSX to use all its ram (8GB).

    Broadus, if you intend to virtualise Windows then yes, you'd need to download a virtualisation program first then install Windows inside that.
    Fusion is a VMWare product so yes that's where you'd get it.
     
  14. Broadus thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Thanks for the answers. That's helpful.
     
  15. Mike Boreham, Oct 12, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2013

    Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

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    #16
    I don't think that is right....Parallels supports 64 bit now and so Windows can use what you give it. To check this I just allocated 6Gb out of 8Gb on the Mac and Windows 7 says it has 5.92Gb usable RAM.

    This is not a good combo and Parallels warned against it, but it works OK.

    EDIT, just tried on my 16Gb machine, giving Windows the max recommended by Parallels of 8Gb, and Windows is reporting 8Gb
     
  16. Quackers macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    Yes, I allocated about 2.5GB for the guest OS. So that's all it's using. OSX gobbles up all the rest but only when the vm is running.
     
  17. Xerotech macrumors 6502

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #18
    Bootcamp is mostly for games. Visualization softwares work flawlessly. I use Parellels and it runs all the programs quite nice. There's a mode that allows you to minimize the desktop window completely and 'load' applications as if you had apps on Mac OSX.
     
  18. Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

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    #19
    Don't see this on my Macs. At this moment Windows 7 is running on my 8Gb machine, with 3.5 Gb allocated, and the "prl_vm_app" is using 866 Mb, and Parallels Desktop is using 164Mb. Kernel task is biggest user at 859Mb. This with a game, a chess analysis prog, IE, MS Word, and Outlook running.
     
  19. Hookemfins macrumors 6502

    Hookemfins

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    Florida
    #20
    Running windows on Parallels works great but in my MBPr I run my Windows based program using Crossover http://www.codeweavers.com/products/


    Try the free trial and install your program. If it works, problem solved and you don't lose a lot of space.
     

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