Virtual Machine on External HDD

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by ChronoYu, Aug 10, 2009.

  1. ChronoYu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2007
    #1
    Hi, I'm not very good at computers, and I don't know a lot about them, so please bear with me.

    I want to install VMware on my iMac, so I'll be able to use Microsoft Office 2007 for Windows, which supports VBA, which I need for my work.

    But I've heard a lot about how it's possible for something to go wrong while using the virtual machine, which might cause the whole HDD to get corrupted, as I've read here.

    So I'm going to install VMware on my iMac, and partition my external HDD (111GB) so that I can install a virtual machine (Windows OS) on it, without risk of corrupting the whole HDD.

    Now here's the big question:

    If I were to install the virtual machine onto this external HDD, would I still be able to disconnect it from my iMac when I'm not running neither VMware nor the virtual machine at all? Would my iMac be alright if I were to start it up without the external HDD connected?

    I ask this because I use this same external HDD to transfer big data files to and fro from different computers. So I will need to disconnect it from the iMac frequently.

    Please reply ASAP. I would really appreciate any advice or help that you can give!
     
  2. Rodus macrumors 6502a

    Rodus

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    #2
    Yes, you can run a virtual machine from any external HDD and disconnect it as needed.
     
  3. ChronoYu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2007
    #3
    thanks very much! Now I can go ahead with installing VMware and such.

    Just one more thing I forgot to think about, I'm now partitioning my external drive, but. . .

    What format should the partition for the virtual machine be, if I want to installing Windows on it? I'm partitioning the drive with Disk Utility, and it only has Mac formats, Free Space, or Fat32. NTFS is the best format for Windows as it runs faster for Windows compared to Fat32, right? So if I need to format it in NTFS, how do I do that?
     
  4. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #4
    it will need to be formatted as Macintosh HFS+, this is so that VMWare can read/write to it! using FAT32 is possible, but not feasible.

    this is how it works..

    VMWare creates a "virtual" hard drive for the virtual machine to connect to. this virtual hard drive is basically a really big document, expect it is formatted for use by VMWare. the virutal hard drive will initially be small, say around 2gb->5gb. but as you add more to it it will expand until you reach the capacity that you have specified (when you setup you can specify how big you want it to be).

    hope this helps
     
  5. ChronoYu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2007
    #5
    I'm sorry, I know I'm starting to get annoying, but just to be extra sure,

    is Macintosh HFS+/Mac OS Extended or HFS+ Journaled better? I read about it the internet that Journaled is better that it reduces the tendency of the data becoming corrupted, or something along those lines, right? But since I'm only going to be using it for installing a virtual machine (or rather saving the virtual HDD file) in it, which is better?
     
  6. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #6
    haha its fine dont sweat it, ask away.

    i tend to use Journaled. just a personal preference. it doesnt really matter though.
     

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