Windows PC to MBA questions

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Ranalot, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. Ranalot macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2010
    Hello, I am looking at migrating from Windows laptop to a MBA as my primary work PC.

    I will buy the top of the line MBA - i7 CPU, 256 GB SSD. From what I understand the memory can only be 4GB max, right?

    I will be using bootcamp to boot into Windows as well as OS X. In Windows (and maybe OS X - not quite sure since I have never used OS X) I will be running VMware. Within the VMWare I will be running SQL Server, Windows Server, and some light database applications.

    Will the 4GB Ram or any other aspect of MBA cause this to be a major performance problem?

    I really don't care for the heavy and thick MacBook Pro, and am really wanting to make the MBA work.

    Any thoughts?
  2. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Jan 9, 2011
    I think you're bound to run into performance issues running Windows Server with SQL in a VM on a computer that has a total of 4GB of memory.
  3. Ranalot thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2010
    Drat, I was hoping that would not be the case. If only they would allow more RAM on the MBA, I'd be better off, I think.

    I travel a lot for work so portability is of utmost concern. :(
  4. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Jan 9, 2011
    Consider the new Sony Z series. More powerful than the MBA, lighter, thinner than the MBA if measured at the MBA's thickest point. The Z series is a uniform thickness and does not taper like the MBA. And an option for 8GB of ram.

    Advertised battery life is also comparable and also has an optional sheet battery for double the battery life.

    It's not cheap though.

    If portability and capability is your main concern and you don't actually need OSX for anything, I think it's a better fit for you.
  5. reclusive46 macrumors 65816


    Apr 14, 2011
    This sounds like you could do with a 13" MacBook Pro. There really not that heavy. You can upgrade the ram to 8GB then (= You'll love OSX and you can still use VMWare for the windows stuff.
  6. LeakedDave macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2011
    Why don't you try? Then return it within 14 days for a full refund if it doesn't work out.
  7. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    x2. If you will be spending most of your time in Windows running Windows in virtualization, the Sony may be the better choice because it is more expandable and just as portable. Unfortunately, it is pricier.
  8. fkhan3 macrumors 6502

    Apr 28, 2010
    I have Oracle 11g R2, SQL Server, and some ETL tools installed on Bootcamp partition. It works pretty well for light usage. All my heavy development happens on more powerful machine. I am very happy with the MBA performance so far.

    I think you should pick one up and try it out. You have 14 days to return it.
  9. accessoriesguy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2011
    VMware on 4 gigs is fine, you just wont be able to handle high end things like adobe suit or visual studios can't be pushed too far.

    However, if you bootcamp it instead, you can enjoy windows entirely, without sacrificing RAM :apple:
  10. jackrv macrumors 6502

    Jul 14, 2011
    SQL Server is a memory glutton. I don't know how large your database(s) are, but SQL will try to load tables and temp tables into RAM. 32-bit SQL Server will often quickly rise to about 1.8Gb ( near max for the 2Gb userspace ), and the 64-bit version will eat everything it can find. (These are databases over 2Gb mind you)

    And that will be in bootcamp. If you try running server components like that in a Windows Server VM running on top of OSX already, I can see memory becoming an issue.

    I'd agree with the others and go for a Macbook Pro, or more realistically, a higher end Windows laptop, especially if you need to develop mainly in a Windows environment.
  11. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Jan 9, 2011
    He's not running "windows" he's running Windows Server with SQL server on top of that. BIG difference.

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