Expert advice needed ---> Windows 7 (Bootcamp & Parallels)

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by Travisimo, Dec 26, 2009.

  1. Travisimo macrumors 6502a

    Dec 22, 2009
    I have a new 27" iMac with the i5 processor, Snow Leopard, and 8GB of Ram. Using the secondary display trick, I was able to successfully install Windows 7 (64 bit) with Bootcamp and it is working great. But I also have Parallels Desktop 5 (latest version) and am having troubles with it running Windows 7 from my Bootcamp partition.

    I was able to get the virtual machine installed and Windows 7 will boot. However, it takes a LONG time to start the virtual machine and hard drive access is VERY sluggish. To be clear, Parallels itself loads fast but once I start the Windows 7 virtual machine, it takes 5-10 minutes to loads. But even after it loads, any time I do something to access the HD, it is very slow. For example, if I try to play a game, it'll take a long time to load the game but once it gets loaded, it runs great. So I know it's not a memory, CPU, or GPU issue. I have 4 GB or Ram dedicated to the virtual machine.

    Now I thought I read something about Parallels having trouble with Windows 7 when using the Bootcamp partition - something about a HFS reading problem from a Bootcamp driving or something?

    My Mac is booting into the 32bit kernel of Snow Leopard and the Windows 7 installation is 64 bit? Would that be causing a problem?

    I also have Macfuse and Paragon NTFS installed on the Mac. Would those be causing a problem?

    Specifically, what do you think could be causing the very slow hard drive access in my virtual machine? I wasn't able to find a solution at the Parallels website.

  2. Travisimo thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Dec 22, 2009
    I'm still having this problem. I was curious to see how VMWare would perform in this respect and the results were interesting. Windows 7 started up MUCH faster and even loading games was almost twice as fast! 3D performance was much slower, however, so I really can't run games in VMWare.

    So this does not solve my problem of slow hard drive access with Parallels 5 and Windows 7 on my 27" iMac. It takes 10-15 minutes for Windows 7 to finish booting and I can see the HD light on the entire time. Once it finishes loading, the OS is very peppy, except whenever I do something that requires HD loading. For example, a game like Mass Effect actually runs pretty decent once it gets loaded, but it too takes forever to load. And sometimes it gets choppy when the game has to load data from the HD. But GPU performance is actually pretty darn good. And it's definitely not a RAM issue because I can check RAM use from within Windows 7 and it's not even using all of it.

    Now I'm thinking this might have to do with file system or something like that. I'm running Snow Leopard on a 27" iMac (i5, 8GB Ram, ATI 4850) with Parallels 5 (latest version).

    Running Windows 7 from Boot Camp has no issues with HD loading... so I can obviously reboot and use that. But it's a shame that HD access seems to be a major bottleneck right now on my system.

    Just hoping someone else could shed some light on this. No one in the Parallels forum answered my question either. :-(
  3. MythicFrost macrumors 68040


    Mar 11, 2009
    I don't think so.
    No idea, what do they do?
    Have you installed the Parallels Tools?

    You may want to consider going to the Parallels forums and making a post (if you haven't yet). I have Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit installed in Boot Camp, and I open it with Parallels 5 and it works fine.
    EDIT: I see you have said you already made a post, they can take a while to reply (sometimes days)

    Have you got the latest version of Parallels 5? Build (5.0.)9308 I believe.
    When you first ran your VM, did you let it take it's time to finish configuring properly? (It can take a while).

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