Virtual machine that can see a third partition

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by vistadude, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. vistadude macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2010
    #1
    I just bought my first mac a few days ago. It's a white macbook with snow leopard. I'm still getting used to everything on the mac side :)

    I partitioned the 250 GB hard disk as:
    Partition 1: 70 GB, Mac OS X
    Partition 2: 150 GB, FAT32 for data sharing
    Partition 3: 30 GB, FAT32 for Windows XP running through bootcamp

    Everything works fine so far, OS X and Windows XP can see all three partitions. Now I'd like to run Windows in a virtual machine. I've done a lot of searching and can't find a solution where both Mac OS and the virtualized machine can see the large FAT32 shared Partition. Is there any way to make this work, and should I use VMware fusion or parallels?

    If this is not possible, can Mac OS at least see the shared partition and copy files to the windows partition while the virtual machine is running so that the windows parition can access some of the files that were originally on the shared partition?


    Thanks.
     
  2. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #2
    Blech, FAT32.

    You should be able to configure the 150 GB partition as a shared folder in VMWare or Parallels under OS X and basically mount it as a network share in the VM.

    B
     
  3. vistadude thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 3, 2010
    #3
    Dear balamw,

    Thanks for your post. My macbook will be connected to both a home network and work network (not simultaneously). Will your network share suggestion have any trouble with this? Also, when running the VM, will both mac os and windows be able to simultaneously access the shared partition, or just one (which one?)?

    Would you suggest Fusion 3 or Parallels? I don't plan to do any gaming. I'll be using programs which are mostly not graphically intense, except for adobe illustrator and photoshop.

    Thanks.
     
  4. UnixNut macrumors newbie

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #4
    From my understanding, Macs can only handle FAT32 up to 128Gb in size, not counting FAT32 has file size limitations. Can I ask why you would use it rather than NTFS?
     
  5. vistadude thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 3, 2010
    #5
    NTFS can't be written to by Mac OS X. I need FAT32 so i can always write data to all the drives. I know windows can handle FAT32 partitions up to 2 terabytes, maybe even more.
     
  6. UnixNut macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #6

    Hmmm, didn't realize that, I know BSD can, and Mac is built on it. Just keep in mind fat32 has a file size limit of 4Gb, in case you ever want to store DVD .iso images, etc...
     
  7. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #7
    Large FAT32 is fine. I have a 1TB USB drive that is formatted FAT32 and works fine.

    FWIW you can enable NTFS writing within OS X Snow Leopard a number of ways. NTFS-3G, Tuxera NTFS for Mac, Paragon NTFS for Mac, or even the native Snow Leopard driver.

    B
     
  8. vistadude thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jan 3, 2010
    #8
    So is anyone using network shared folders and how does it work or interfere with your network?


    Thanks.
     
  9. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #9
    I was going to play with this for you, but I upgraded VMWare to 3.0.1 and broke the activation on my VM install. I'm afraid that it will affect my ability to run the Boot Camp one so I am hesitant to re-activate the VMWare one right now.

    B
     

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