Switching to Mac from Windows - help with understanding Fusion, Boot Camp, etc

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by revdarth, Jun 14, 2008.

  1. revdarth macrumors newbie

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    Jun 14, 2008
    #1
    I have been a loyal Microsoft user for many years, but decided with my new desktop purchase to make the jump to a Mac for many different reasons. My new iMac is arriving later this week (24", 2.8 ghz, 2 GB RAM, 500 GB HD, GeForce 8800 512 MB Video card) along with a copy of Fusion on recommendation of several of my Mac using friends.

    As it relates to installing XP on the mac, here's what I am planning on doing. Please correct me if this isn't the way to go.

    1. Install XP Home via Bootcamp on a 32 GB partition (I'm going to be using the boot camp partition largely for gaming, so I do need a pretty healthy sized partition) using FAT b/c of the limitations of the Mac using NTFS (according to the boot camp manual).

    2. Install Fusion and have it access the boot camp partition for its VM.

    The question I have not found an answer to yet is when I set up fusion like this, does it access the XP environment exactly as I set it up in boot camp. For example, if I install MS Office 2007 (which I will as I don't have iworks or office 2008 for mac yet) and Microsoft Money through using boot camp, will the same applications (and data files in the case of MS Money especially) be available when I run the fusion VM of that partition? Similarly, if I install something while running fusion, will it be there if I boot straight into XP?

    I have read all the info about the activation issues with the Microsoft OSes when installed both via Bootcamp and accessed through Fusion, but I think that I have that figured out. I think.

    Thanks for helping out a mac newbie...
     
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #2
    Yes, you will have access to the same files. VMware just loads a different set of drivers to run a virtualized version of Windows. I would make the partition at least 40-50GB unless you want to uninstall games to make room.
     
  3. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    Seems you have a solid understanding. I'm also running Fusion off the bootcamp partition.

    Maybe it doesn't make a big difference, but *I* would not install from within Fusion. I would
    install from a restart in a "pure" Windows environment.
     
  4. revdarth thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jun 14, 2008
    #4
    Thanks for your replies. I also was planning on installing programs only within bootcamp and not w/in fusion.

    Regarding the size of the partition, the apple instructions about bootcamp say that partitions larger than 32 GB have to be in NTFS, but that when you do that you cannot have full read/write access to the files from within the OS (that is, I am assuming without fusion running).

    I also read somewhere that the VMTools program that gets installed allows that full read/write to take place.

    I would prefer to go with NTFS and the larger partition, but do want to be able to read/write from within the OS to the XP partition.

    Again, thanks for helping the newbie out!
     
  5. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #5
    Download and install MacFUSE to be able to read and write NTFS from OS X.
     
  6. Matek macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 6, 2007
    #6
    I couldn't agree more. FAT32 is old and crappy while NTFS is one of the best filesystems out there. MacFUSE will allow you to use the NTFS partition just like any other.
     
  7. Siron macrumors 6502

    Siron

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    #7
    You will have to register XP twice. Once under Boot Camp and when you run XP for the first time in Fusion. You will get a message that tells you that you have registered it too many times (more than once). It will give you a reference number and an 800 number to call. Go through the voice prompts and it will give you a new key.
    If you have to talk to a real person just tell them that you had to reinstall XP because of a HD failure. They will give you a new key (I did it this way and had no problems).
     
  8. Neil321 macrumors 68040

    Neil321

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    #8
    i take it you didn't install the tools ?,as if you did there would have been no need to call M$
     
  9. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #9
    Installling new apps can be done from either BC or Fusion without problem or later issues. Also, if Windows was activated in BC, there should be no activation required from Fusion, as it's the same instance, just a different means of booting the OS.

    I endorse NTFS as the filesystem of choice, there's lots of strategies for read-write between platforms. For an outstanding safety net for Windows, I recommend WinClone highly.
     
  10. Neil321 macrumors 68040

    Neil321

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    #10

    How did you get that to work then???,as ive installed re-installed fusion & windows a few times now and have always had to activate windows twice

    1 activate windows under bootcamp

    2 boot, bootcamp volume under fusion

    3 install tools

    4 reboot the VM

    5 activate windows under fusion

    see twice ????
     
  11. Keleko macrumors 68000

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    Mar 26, 2008
    #11
    I made a 60GB bootcamp partition for my XP install. I am using NTFS as well. If I need to read/write to it while in OS X, I start up XP in Parallels and copy that way. Fusion would do the same thing, of course.

    As for activating, you do have to do it twice since the hardware is different when you run the VM. I actually trialed both Fusion and Parallels before I bought Parallels, so I did more than 2 activations. I never had to call to get it to work, either.

    Why did I pick Parallels? Copying over data from a VM to OS X worked better in Parallels. It failed when I was copying a few GB at once from Fusion. Also, XP seemed to boot faster in Parallels for me. However, I rarely use it now that all my apps (other than games) are OS X native. Now the only use I have for VMed Windows is when I want to watch a Netflix streamed movie. Hopefully that will become OS X native sometime this year.

    32GB is definitely not enough for a gaming partition. With games coming on DVDs now, you'll use that up pretty quickly with just a few games. I could easily use more than 60GB, but for now I just delete or archive the games I'm not playing to an external drive.
     
  12. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #12
    Don't know why it's putting you through that; I installed & activated Windows (XP Pro SP2) under BC over a year ago, installed Parallels, and enabled the BC partition as a bottle with no issues. I just launched from there and kept moving. Since then I dumped Parallels and went to Fusion, it saw the BC instance right off, still under the original activation. I've also WinCloned a few times and restored twice into differently sized BC partitions, still on one activation, no problems. I've run the MS Updates and passed the Genuine Windows nonsense both booted from the BC partition and in Fusion.

    My MS Office 2003 apps did require reactivation once for some reason, but that was just one click each.
     
  13. Neil321 macrumors 68040

    Neil321

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    #13
    I dunno weird,but like you i've had to reactivate MS under fusion
     

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