BootCamp vs Parallels

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by in-ten-city, Aug 12, 2007.

  1. in-ten-city macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #1
    I really need help deciding whether I should install windows (xp - with a possible uprgade to vista when sp1 is released) on my MBP (2.2ghz 2gigRAM) through bootcamp or parallels. I will be running programs like MS Office 07, winamp and maybe the macromedia design suite. Is the only advantage of bootcamp the faster speeds? and do the speeds really differ noticeably ?
     
  2. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Murka
    #2
    Why not install Bootcamp, and then use Parallels (or I'd rather recommend VMWare) to access the partition? That's what I do. Bootcamp is noticeably faster for me, but it's soooo useful to have access to both via VMWare.
     
  3. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #3
    thanks so much for the input, but i must admit i am a bit of a novice when it comes to this and am not familiar with a lot of the terminology and inner workings. are you saying that its possible to install windows with bootcamp, and then install parallels, and be able to access the os installed through bootcamp on parallels without having to restart? will i still have the option in that case to restart into windows through bootcamp? and also - will all of the features of parallels work if i do it that way (esp being able to access mac partition files from windows)?
     
  4. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #4
    why?
     
  5. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Murka
    #5
    I assume you know the concepts of Boot Camp. If you install Boot Camp, it creates a partition on the hard drive for Windows. You can then boot to Windows or MacOS when turning on the computer, or selecting from Startup Disk (a Preference Pane in System Preferences).

    Once Boot Camp and Windows are installed successfully, you can boot in to Mac OS X and install Parallels or VMWare Fusion. Either provide the option on startup to launch the "virtual machine" running on the Boot Camp Partition. Once started, they'll install their "tools" utilities and allow you to use them as a normal virtual machine. You'll then be able to use your Windows installation, and related applications, either in a dedicated environment through Boot Camp, or virtualised within Mac OS X through Parallels or VMWare.

    Make sense? :)

    It's faster, more responsive, and I just trust VMWare more (having had corporate server virtualisation experience with them).

    Parallels seems to be the fashionable option, but VMWare seems to be the "get stuff done" option. Parallels is gaining bloat quickly, which really put me off.
     
  6. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #6
    yes thank you this sounds like an excellent option. would i have to format the disk in a certain format when installing windows through bootcamp (NFTS/FAT) or would this not matter and the virtualization software would be able to deal with either? are you sure that when doing this none of the functionality of parallels/fusion is comprimised?
     
  7. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Murka
    #7
    NTFS/FAT32 won't matter in terms of accessing from VMWare/Parallels, but consider this:

    NTFS:
    • read-only to Mac OS X.
    • >32Gb available
    • more reliable

    FAT32
    • read/write on Mac OS X
    • <32Gb limitation
    • less reliable
    • more compatible, generally
    • can be converted easily by Windows XP to NTFS later if required (one way, however)

    Despite the advantages of NTFS, when using a Mac I always choose FAT32, so I can modify the partition from Mac OS X if required.

    If you're in Boot Camp, there's also MediaFour MacDrive for accessing your Mac formatted partitions ;)
     
  8. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #8
    How exactly is FAT32 less reliable? MacDrive looks like a very good add on for boot camp. Is Mac inherently able to read the windows partition?
     
  9. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Murka
    #9
    It's been a few years since I delved in to the exact details, but it's common knowledge that NTFS is the "security & reliability" option, while FAT32 is the "backward-compatibility & other OS support" option. The reliability point is due to fragmentation - NTFS is far less affected by fragmentation and the potential issues arising there.

    Yes, but as mentioned, read/write for FAT32 and read-only for NTFS.

    Choose your partition type purely over access you need:

    If you need to access and potentially modify your Windows files and folders from Mac OS X, choose FAT32. If not, choose NTFS.
     
  10. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #10

    very interesting thanks for the info. does vmware's software allow you to navigate Windows using the Windows taskbar directly on your Mac desktop? parallels calls this "coherence" and looks like this [​IMG]
    pretty cool huh?

    -if i am planning on upgrading to leopard when it comes out, will i run into many problems and issues with this dual os setup? ive never upgraded os's on mac before and dont really know what it can affect, but im really looking forward to this upgrade.

    also, if i were to upgrade windows xp within bootcamp to vista,would i need to reconfigure the virtualization software or would it automatically adjust?

    thanks so much
     
  11. brkirch macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2001
    #11
    There isn't a huge speed difference unless you are playing games or using software that requires graphics acceleration. The biggest advantage to Boot Camp is that just about any Windows software should work, and all device drivers should work correctly.

    I have found Fusion to be much less responsive from my experience. As for Parallels having "bloat", considering that around 90% of the requested features for Fusion on the Fusion support board are features that Parallels has, it looks like most future features of Fusion are going to be "bloat". :rolleyes:

    If you are considered getting virtualization software I would recommend that you try both Fusion and Parallels because both provide free trials.

    I would recommend NTFS because there is backup software that you can use on your Boot Camp partition if it is formatted NTFS, and when you run your Boot Camp partition through Parallels it will mount your Boot Camp partition read/write on the desktop. There is also software you can get to read/write to a NTFS partition in OS X, but you would have to run it through the terminal.

    You can't make the taskbar show in VMWare's version of Coherence (called Unity) without enabling it using a hidden option because their implementation is still very buggy. Leopard should be supported by both Fusion and Parallels around the time it comes out, you'll just need to look for an update. I have no idea how Fusion or Parallels would handle a XP to Vista upgrade, you would probably have to reinstall Parallels/VMWare tools but I'm not entirely sure.
     
  12. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #12
    thanks for the input. what do you mean by having to "run it through the terminal"? Will MacDrive work with NTFS?
     
  13. brkirch macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2001
    #13
    MacDrive is actually Windows software; it lets you mount your Mac disk in Windows. NTFS-3G is what I was referring to, it lets you write to a NTFS partition in Mac OS X, but to use it you would have to learn how to use the Terminal application (located in Applications > Utilities) and that is probably more trouble then it is worth if you have never used the terminal before.
     
  14. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #14
    from what ive gathered ,windows needs special software to read mac partition(s) but mac doesnt need special software to read windows partition(s) is this correct? if yes why is this so?
     
  15. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #15
    yes, as a new mac user im trying to avoid any trouble for the time being, but until i become familiar with terminal you would recommend a FAT partition? which doesnt need special software to write to im assuming?
     
  16. brkirch macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2001
    #16
    Macs can read NTFS but not write to it. Windows can't read Mac partitions because Windows doesn't have HFS+ support (Microsoft decided they don't need to add it).

    Unless you need to use files that are more than 4 GB in size, yes a FAT32 partition would work fine. FAT32 is fully supported by OS X, so yes you would be able to write to it. I think Windows Vista only supports NTFS though, but it isn't too difficult to convert FAT32 to NTFS so if you decide to upgrade to Vista that shouldn't be a problem.
     
  17. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
  18. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #18
    that program looks terribly complicated :confused: is it as complicated as it looks from the wikisite? for some reason all programs with wikisites give off the impression of being extremely convoluted...
     
  19. dirtleg macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Location:
    St. Louis
    #19
    Very good questions and answers here.

    I have one. When Leopard comes out and has Bootcamp integrated into the OS, will one have to redo the partitions and Windows installs? Ordering a new iMac and wanting to use Bootcamp for Windows, but if I have to redo everything in a couple of months, I would just as soon wait for Leopard.

    This dual OS on one hard drive just blows my mind.
     
  20. brkirch macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2001
    #20
    It's not really that complicated, but it is still probably more trouble to figure out than you would probably like, so you might just want to use FAT32.

    No repartitioning or reinstalling will be necessary.
     
  21. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #21
    Read my post in this thread.

    I have a version of macfuse which installs easily and auto mounts/dismounts drives for you without using the command line. Very easy.
     
  22. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #22
    i know this may seem like a stupid question , but what does it mean to mount/dismount a drive?

    also, i checked out your post and im confused as to what exactly you were referring to . on the download site there is MacFUSE Tools , NTFS-3G, and Bundle . what do each of these elements do exactly and what am i supposed to download?
     
  23. TBi macrumors 68030

    TBi

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Ireland
    #23
    Get the bundle as it has both the NTFS software and the extra stuff which automates all the mounting/dismounting stuff.

    As for what does mounting and dismounting means... do some googling and reading. It's good for the soul to find these things out yourself!
     
  24. in-ten-city thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    #24
    followed your advice and did a lot of reading this morning. thanks.


    after careful deliberation ive decided to install windows through bootcamp and then virtualize the partition in parallels, so i can choose which environment best suits my needs at any given time. now if only someone can help me sort out the activation issues:confused:...http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=341334
     
  25. emoeric macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    #25
    Thanks guys! Couple more questions...

    These questions and answers are excellent, Thank you so much to all for helping out in this matter. I too have had similar questions brewing in my head for about two weeks. I have some more questions though:

    1.The new bootcamp cam be supposedly hacked so that you do not need to restart osX to get into it, has anyone done this? Is it really hard to do so?

    2.
    Leopard has Spaces, and its going to be awesome. Is there anyone on this board that has a dev copy of leopard and has used spaces? To extend upon that thought, has anyone used bootcamp and spaces together? Has anyone used a hacked copy of bootcamp and spaces?
    - subpoint: has anyone used spaces and parallels, thus achieving windows in fullscreen on (1) space, and mac osx on (3) other spaces?

    3. I am currently using a real living breathing piece of crap vista computer (they are not really that bad, but my MBP with tiger is so much better) at work. I use vista to use autocad LT 2008 for 2D drawings. I stress the point of 2D drawings, I am making 2D mechanical drawings with autocad. I am trying to get the company to pay for several macbook pro upgrades so that I can run parallels,windows xp (or vista?), and autocad 2008. Has anyone tried autocad 2008 in parallels? for 2D drawings? its a burning question of mine. I do not want to have them pay for an upgrade that is not sufficient. Please note my configuration is: 2ghz core duo, 1.5gb ram, 250gb (after upgrade).

    4. How does vista run on a MBP with bootcamp or parallels? It runs great on this desktop I am using, but HORRIBLE on a HP COMPAQ 6715b notebook with 1.5gb ram. This concerns me greatly, should I simply use XP?


    Thank you in advance to all for the answers already given, and the answers to come! :cool::D
     

Share This Page