Parallels Desktop

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by readysteadyetc, Aug 21, 2011.

  1. readysteadyetc macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2009
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    Question about system requirements

    I have a question about specifics of the Parallels Desktop system requirements in order to have the system run smoothly.

    Right now im contemplating on buying a macbook air for a very strict purpose of running around 4 virtial XP's simultanious, using Parallels Desktop, and the dillema I have is deciding whether to choose the i7 or the i5 CPU. Given that the tasks which im going to run on XP's are rather light-weight (each OS will run the same set of applications: 1 browser with 3 tabs open and a macro program) I thus planned on allocating no more than 512 RAM to each OS so RAM wise there shouldn't be any issues, but I am not sure if the i5 processor will be enough to avoid any lags or spikes from occuring.

    Any input on which processor I should pick would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Young Spade macrumors 68020

    Mar 31, 2011
    Tallahassee, Florida
    1) if you plan on running for virtual machines simultaneously you're going to need more than four gigs of RAM. You can't just allocate 512 MB each one because the OS itself requires RAM itself to run.

    If you really want to run multiple virtual machines, you need to get at least a MacBook Pro and upgrade the RAM your self to 8 GB.

    The processor itself isn't the problem, you might as well just go ahead and get the baseline processor for any model MacBook. To be honest, opening the processor through Apple is a complete waste of money.
  3. readysteadyetc thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2009
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    Thank you for the response. How much ram does lion consume? My plan was to devote 2 gigs for 4 virtual XPs and the other 2 gigs fortrhe host OS X. Are you certain that that wouldn't work? What if I drop 1 os and make it 3 then?
  4. taliskerwithice macrumors newbie

    Aug 22, 2011
    I have the mba 2011 13" 4 gig of ram 256 ssd and standard i5 cpu. I've been using it for a similar use to yours since the day it arrived in the store.

    Don't get the upgraded processor, its a rip off for only a slight gain in my opinion.

    With some general osx programs open I have 2.4 gig of RAM free. I would say parallels and your four guests will run.

    I use virtual box as I felt parallels and vmware fusion didn't add very much for the price. I tried both on free trial. I'll buy one if they can add decent lion full screen support. (It would be great to give a vm more than one 'full screen' and for it to think it has multiple screens). Of the three I have to say I thought parallels was the poorest as the windows start button integration into osx appeared sluggish. I don't use it so switched it off anyway. Virtual box ticks all my boxes and is free.

    I run with two windows 7 virtual computers (sometimes an unbuntu desktop) and a few lion programs open. Its fast. Visual studio 2010 feels faster on the air than it does in an actual windows 7 pc (with core i7-2600, SSD, 8 gig ram. Windows clutter slows down the dedicated computer while clean lightweight virtual windows machines fly on the air).

    I haven't run the exact set-up you asked about (and don't know your full requirements) but I'm pretty sure it will run well.
  5. windowstomac macrumors 6502

    Jun 23, 2011
    I have an i5 MBP, just running a Win7 in Parallels, and after I installed Lion, was unhappy with performance until I increased my RAM to 8gb and gave 3gb to the VM.

    I know it's WIn7 and not XP, but I don't do masses in my VM either, just Outlook 2010 and an accounting package.

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