VMWARE: Any performance benefit in using bootcamp partition.

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by Gabriel GR, Dec 15, 2009.

  1. Gabriel GR macrumors 6502a

    Gabriel GR

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2009
    Location:
    Athens, Greece
    #1
    Hi. I've demoed Parallels for a while and I think I am going to give Fusion a shot now. I plan to install a new bigger HDD soon in my Macbook and I am wondering if I should bother with creating a bootcamp partition to use with VmWare.

    I don't like the idea of restarting and switching between OS's and windows in parallels runs well enough for my needs. I thought having an NTFS partition rather than emulating the filesystem over journal in an expanding image would make the overal experience smoother.

    Any tips or experience with that? Thank's in advance
     
  2. Keleko macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    #2
    You only need the bootcamp partition if you have a reason to boot directly to Windows. I do it for playing games, since running a game in VMWare is mostly futile. There really isn't much other reason to have a bootcamp partition. I've noticed no speed difference running from the bootcamp partition compared to a virtualized image.
     
  3. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030

    Darth.Titan

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #3
    Actually using a Boot Camp partition with Fusion or Parallels is slower than using a virtual hard drive file, so there's no performance benefit.
     
  4. applevx macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    #4


    And why is that? Please tell me the reason, I also want to improve my virtual windows performance. :D
     
  5. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030

    Darth.Titan

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #5
    The reason seems to be that accessing to data on the NTFS Boot Camp partition is slower than the HFS+ partition. Also, if you use your Boot Camp partition you lose the ability to suspend the VM which can really shorten startup times between sessions.
     
  6. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #6
    I posted a similar question over at the vmware forums (and a bunch of others) and the response back is that there is an increase ni overhead with dealing with vmware running windows from a bootcamp partition. Maybe not a lot but it is slower then using the native vmdk vm.

    I've been on the fence myself at which way to go, but I'm leaning towards the setting windows up in a VM as opposed to bootcamp. Now I need to figure out whether it matters to run 64bit vs 32bit within vmware.

    Oh well decisions, decisions. :)
     
  7. applevx macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    #7
    Thanks a lot. But I still have to try it out before I make a decision ;)
     
  8. Harry0620 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    #8
    I have installed W7x64 both way last night. Since I already activated the W7 in bootcamp, I have to use phone activation the W7 in Fusion 3 vertual machine. Online activation will not work. Running W7x64 in Bootcamp vertual machine is much much slower than running W7x64 under just virtual machine - Imac i5.
     
  9. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    #9
    Another problem with using a bootcamp partition is you can't suspend the VM, you always have to shut it down and boot it up. Minor thing, but you know...
     
  10. sjinsjca macrumors 68000

    sjinsjca

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    #10
    Of course, you don't need VMWare or Parallels to run your Windows machine off of Boot Camp. But it'll be faster to boot natively into Windows that way vs. using a virtual machine.

    Having said that, I got rid of my Boot Camp partition and now run Windows exclusively in a VM, even though my elderly MacBook Pro is the original-issue model with the 32-bit Core Duo processor and 2GB RAM limit. Fusion still runs Win7 snappily. There are several advantages to running the VM as a normal VM (that is, stored in the Mac file system) vs. keeping it in the Boot Camp partition. It's faster, due to the efficient Mac file system and no need to convert in and out of NTFS, and maybe even more important, Time Machine will back up your VM if it's stored in the Mac file system. Time Machine does not even see the Boot Camp partition!

    If I had a more modern machine, I'd be even happier running things as a VM. As it stands, it runs acceptably well, and having Time Machine back it up has saved me on a couple of occasions. And there's great joy in being able to dedicate one of my Spaces screens to the VM, and have my Mac environment a keystroke away.
     

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