BootCamp, VMware Fusion or Parallels?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by estochin, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. estochin macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2008
    I have enjoyed reading all the posts and replies re: switcing from an XP computer to the new iMac 20 or 24 and installing XP on the new iMac.

    I also enjoy reading all the posts on how to do this installation.
    I have some questions - I am getting ready to purchase an iMac and I am wondering:

    * Is there a difference between BootCamp, VMware Fusion or Parallels.
    * What is the best one to use when installing XP on an iMac

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. Berlepsch macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2007
    Hi Jim,

    VMware and Parallels are very similar products - they have slightly different weak and strong points, but both solutions work very well. As a rule, VMware might run Windows a bit faster, and Parallels has probably a better integration with MacOS. With both applications, you can run your XP software side by side with your Mac programs.

    Bootcamp on the other hand runs Windows exactly like on a PC, there are no speed losses due to virtualization. If you plan to run high-end 3d games, this is the way to go. The greatest disadvantage is that you have to shut down your current Mac OS an boot to Windows if you need to run a XP program (and vice versa).

    If you want, you can install XP using bootcamp first. Under Mac OS, you can then install a trial version of VMware or Parallels and set it up to use your bootcamp partition to run in a virtual machine. This wayyou have to maintain only one windows installation. I did it like that, and I haven't 'bootcamped' to XP for months, since the Windows software that I need runs well enough in Parallels.

    In any case, you need a license for your XP installation to run it, and when you switch from from bootcamp to virtual Windows, some software needs to be re-registered.
  3. estochin thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2008
    Berlepsch - Thanks so much for the detailed reply. As I get closer, I may ask a few more questions. You've been most helpful. :)
  4. zmttoxics macrumors 65816


    May 20, 2008
    As a note, there is now a free alternative worth using by the name of Virtual Box. It has all of the same features and is very competitive in terms of speed and usability. I own fusion my self, but I regret buying with Virtual Box being as good as it is.
  5. vansouza macrumors 68000


    Mar 28, 2006
    West Plains, MO USA Earth
  6. t0mat0 macrumors 603


    Aug 29, 2006
    I'm not sure which way it is, but I think you can actually convert a XP image from Parallels to VMware I think - They have a trial offer or demo I'd imagine to see what it's like. I've tried both, and as above - parallels does integrate well, but they're fairly closely matched - checking out their websites, and maybe wiki for a overview of deifferences might help. Do Apple stores demo either? might be a way to see what they're like. I'd imagine Youtube has some demos.

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