Parallels 12 + Bootcamp + Windows 10

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by Robbo1, Jun 9, 2017.

  1. Robbo1 macrumors member

    Apr 4, 2017
    So I am making the jump from PC to Mac and just ordered a new 2017 27" Imac.

    I would like to install Win 10 Home on a Bootcamp partition (for Steam + some games) and also to install a couple of Parallels 12 Win 10 Virtual machines (one for Quicken/MS Office and one for light Windows gaming). I want the VMs to be completely independent of each other and the Bootcamp WIndows install (to isolate each from potential viruses).

    I assume I can use the same Win 10 license key for both the bootcamp install and the VMs although this isn't made entirely clear by the Parallels website or their support forums. Any clue as to how to make this work?
  2. craig1024 macrumors regular

    Feb 15, 2016
    You can't use the same product key for three computers ( 2 VM's and Bootcamp counts as three computers ) Microsoft won't activate two of them.
  3. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Right -- it's not a Parallels issue. It's a Windows licensing issue. Use proper virus/malware/etc protection. There's no need to have 3 separate machines. Set up Boot Camp and then set up Parallels to also run it when you don't need resources fully dedicated to Windows and can get by with virtualization. You can use just 1 license that way.
  4. Robbo1 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 4, 2017
    Looking around on the web, it appears that Windows will look at Bootcamp and Parallels (running bootcamp) as two separate computers requiring two licenses. Is this correct?
  5. Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

    Aug 10, 2006
    I (and other people) have succeeded in having Bootcamp and Parallels activated simultaneously from my MS account, but I have also failed, as have many other people. It is a mystery why it sometimes works and sometimes not. Threads on the Parallels forum.

    The activation rules are also a mystery. I believe VMs work differently from regular machines because the "hardware" is defined by Parallels. EG I can duplicate a VM, rename it and use it for Insider testing and it is automatically activated without affecting the activation of the one it was a copy of.

    All I can say is that using Bootcamp and Parallels VMs extensively I have sometimes been able to activate more than I expected, and sometimes less. I haven't cracked the code. Sorry not to be more help.

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