Windows on MBA

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Shake'n'Bake, Sep 30, 2013.

  1. Shake'n'Bake macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2013
    Hi Guys,

    Time has come for me to get a new computer, and I am thinking of a MBA (never had mac before), but I need to be able to run a few Windows Programmes (Windows Excel, Kistler Quattro Jump, SigmaPlot, and Catapult Sprint). The majority of work I do is running some specific software for data collection and then analysis via excel and word processing in word.

    None of this programmes should be too taxing, not games or anything.

    I am looking at the current MBA, i7, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD. I was wondering if anyone could help me with a few queries.

    1. How well does Parallels or equivalent run on a MBA with these specs? I have seen a few people say its fine, others say it runs slow. I would be running windows 7.

    2. I realise the computer will run better in bootcamp, but the issue of rebooting to switch between OS's is a bit annoying. So I would rather go with virtulaisation. Has anyone had any issues of some windows programmes not running in virtualisation?

    3. How much RAM should I give to the virtulisation?

    4. Is it better to install windows through bootcamp and then run it through virtual?

    5. In bootcamp you can't copy files from windows to OS X can you? Other than via a cloud or USB?

    6. I have heard people talking about keyboard and trackpad problems when working in windows, In excel, this could be annoying, do people have problems with that.

    Sorry for all the questions, I hope someone can help.
  2. jlately macrumors newbie

    Sep 2, 2012
    I have those exact specs in a maxed out 2012 MBA. I'll answer what I can.

    1. VMWare runs fine on mine.

    2. I don't run those programs, but I doubt that you would see a lot of issues running in a VM.

    3. I gave 4. It was enough.

    4. You can install through Bootcamp and then run it though VM Ware. I'm sure Parallels has a similar feature.

    5. Not sure about this, but you can definitely share files in the VM.

    6. I've never had issues with the keyboard or trackpad. You just have to get used to the different buttons for commands.
  3. frankq macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2012
    I have the same computer you are considering. I currently have it bootcamped without parallels. Windows runs fine with parallels and when you have it setup this way you can exchange files between op systems, with bootcamp you cannot without booting into each op system. I took parallels off of my setup because I mostly play games, and VM's don't play nice with games, all other programs work fine with parallels that I tried also the trackpad works fine in windows, it just somehow work's much better in OS X though. One thing I will mention others can chime in, windows was a bitch to install thru boot camp, easy thru parallels.
  4. Shake'n'Bake thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2013
    I think I will probably go for it through the virtualisation then if it is a ball ache to install through bootcamp. Thanks.

    Thanks for the info, have you ever used paralells before, I am unsure whether to go for that or VMWare. From what I have read, they seem pretty similar.
  5. Chicane-UK macrumors 6502

    Apr 26, 2008
    I have a similar spec to the one you're thinking of. VMware Fusion running Windows 7 absolutely flies on it, so you'll have no problems there :)
  6. Shake'n'Bake thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2013
  7. JasonStonier macrumors newbie

    Jun 27, 2013
    I have the lowest spec MBA possible, a 1st gen 2008 with 2gig memory.

    I run Windows XP in VirtualBox with 1 gig of memory, and it runs Excel with some heavy-weight macros as fast as it runs on my wife's laptop (Acer Core2Duo with 4gig memory), and it runs Corel Draw X6 with only a tiny amount of lag.

    With the specs of the machine you're looking at, you will have no issues virtualising at all.

  8. jonasdamn macrumors 6502a

    Mar 4, 2013
    5. You can copy files via os x your windows files or from windows your os x files. Dont need usb and etc.
    6. Need to learn MBA keyboard combinations for windows, after i have learnt it, no problems for me ;)

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