New iMacs - Best App to Run Windows

  • Posted: 19 August 2007 03:54 PM #16

    Re: Thanks for Your Comments - Very Useful

    [quote author=“David Nelson”][quote author=“obewon86”][quote author=“FlatEric”]I think both solutions will allow you to use a Boot Camp partition as the source for the Windows OS.  It would make a nice progression if obewon86 needs to go that route.

    [snip]

    OK, guys, I’m baaacck. Sorry if my question here sounds academic.
    FE, your statement above (that I boldfaced): is this correct? And if I decided to go with VMWare Fusion from the onset, would I still need to buy a licensed copy of Win XP?

    The VMware Fusion product page says so, and I’m sure if anyone knows it’s VMware themselves. As for Parallels, I know so firsthand because I’ve done it before.

    You would need a real copy of Windows XP regardless of whether you use Boot Camp, Parallels, or VMware Fusion. None of these solutions actually replace Windows itself, they just offer ways for you to run it on your Mac. Whether you need a brand new copy is a different question. If you have a generic copy of Windows XP SP2 (either Professional or Home) that is not going to be used on a different computer anymore, you could potentially use that on your Mac instead. However, you’ll probably have to jump through some hoops with Microsoft support to get it activated on a different computer than the one it was originally installed on.

    In my experience, activation is only really an issue if you’re trying to install an OEM copy of XP on a machine that isn’t the original (or the same type). At one time, OEM copies didn’t require any activation; now they seem to but can usually do so automatically.

    If you’re using a retail copy, I think you’ll probably be able to get it to work.

    -JV

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  • Posted: 19 August 2007 06:47 PM #17

    I have never tried Boot Camp or Parallels, but have been using VMWare Fusion since the first beta, and also use their Windows version of VMWare Player.

    I’ve been pretty impressed with VMWare so far. My main complaint has been installing the OS-specific extra files for sound, video, etc…. there is an automated installer, but it has never worked for me. I’ve always had to extract the drivers and install them manually.

    Right now I only have a Windows 98 machine running, I don’t have a copy of XP. But to run SimCity 2000, SimCopter, and a few other games, it’s fine.

    Plus the large library of pre-made machines in VMWare’s Virtual Appliances library is helpful, if you need a quick Linux install or want to try an offbeat OS like Syllable.

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    Posted: 20 August 2007 08:51 AM #18

    Re: New iMacs - Best App to Run Windows

    I think it depends how much and what you will use Windows for. If you are using Windows daily, you might get tired of Bootcamp. If you are a switcher, I suspect you want to spend as much time in the Mac OS as possible. With Bootcamp, you are essentially turning your Mac into a Windows PC. The Mac OS will not even be booted. I find it to be a pain to reboot the computer all the time. However, the benefits are there is no performance gap due to software virtualization, and Bootcamp is free.

    I have only played with Parallels (one of the two available Virtualization solutions for the Mac). Reviews however claim VMware is very comparable and in some ways may be better then Parallels in that it is a little more compact (yet, not as feature rich) and consequently may run a bit quicker. On the other hand, the company behind Parallels has been very motivated about supporting Parallels and is consequently improving it. VMware has taken quite a while to bring it’s solution to market. Sometimes, this is a good thing because delay often results in a superior product. I am not sure this is so here.

    Personally, I also prefer running Windows 98 in Virtualization to XP. Windows 98 doesn’t take as many resources as XP, and will run just about anything XP will. Both Parallels and VMWare I believe support 98. With Bootcamp, I would probably prefer XP just because networking is a bit improved in XP. With virtualization though, the Mac OS is used for networking.

    [quote author=“obewon86”]I just ordered a new 24” iMac (won’t arrive ‘til mid Sep), and stumbled onto this TMO site… and yes, I’m very new to Macs (was forced to work in a windows environment for a long time… but recently got a “get-out-of-jail” pass [removed]emoticon(’:)’)
    [removed]emoticon(’:)’)).

    Can someone please give me an assessment of the various apps that emulate the windows environment. I’ve read a little on the following:

    1. Boot Camp,
    2. Cold Fusion, and
    3. VMware Fusion.

    Honest assessments, please?

         
  • Posted: 20 August 2007 09:10 AM #19

    Paralells and Boot Camp, both best?

    I am about to become the owner of a new MacbookPro and plan to run parallels. However, I am considering setting up boot camp first so that when (or if ever) I want full speed with windows I can have it but plan to use parallels the vast majority of the time. I plan to run Vista. (Yes, I paid the MS tax and have a supported version for virtualization, geez…)

    That said, are there any recommendations regarding formatting the new hard drive, partition size, etc. that you would recommend given that there seem to be choices to be made here? Do I need to repartition the new hard disk before running Apple’s ‘Migration Assistant?’

    TIA,

    Shorton :idea:

         
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    Posted: 20 August 2007 09:41 AM #20

    Bootcamp can partition after you do the migration. It may take longer, however, because of the added data on the drive.

    As far as how big of a partition is concerned, that would depend on how much you intend to use each OS. And, of course, the size of the drive.

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  • Posted: 20 August 2007 10:22 AM #21

    VMware is best

    I own both VMware Fusion & Parallels (which I bought after the first beta), and I prefer VMware. I find VMware to be more stable, faster, have better hardware support (including multiple processors, allowing the VM to access the battery level, etc) and doesn’t slow down my entire system the way Parallels does.

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  • Posted: 20 August 2007 11:06 AM #22

    Re: New iMacs - Best App to Run Windows

    [quote author=“obewon86”]
    Can someone please give me an assessment of the various apps that emulate the windows environment. I’ve read a little on the following:

    1. Boot Camp,
    2. Cold Fusion, and
    3. VMware Fusion.

    Honest assessments, please?

    My honest assessment is to not run windows at all.  If you’re going to switch, then switch.

    Having said that, there *may* be an instance where you have to run a windows application.  In the 3 years since I switched, I have been in that situation 1 time.  There is a web app written by the company I work for that requires IE6 to run.  Since I work for these boneheads I have no choice but to use it, but I DON’T have windows on my Mac.  I use a product called CrossOver for Mac.  The CrossOver program emulates the windows api’s to allow windows programs to execute within a window in MacOS.  That way you don’t need windows, just the executable you want to run, and CrossOver does the rest.  For the one application I use it for, it works very well.  I’ve found that there is almost always an alternative to using a windows program if you look around for it.


    We (and TMO) really don’t do ourselves any favors by putting up discussions like this on the front page of the website.  I thought I had a friend of mine convinced to switch when he was looking for a new machine, only to find out he got a Dell instead.  His reason: while he was looking around, all the mac websites were full of discussions about running windows on a mac.  If everyone with a mac wants to run windows, why should he bother switching?  While I told him that’s not really the case, but the evidence at sites like this was overwhelming and I couldn’t refute it.

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  • Posted: 20 August 2007 11:54 AM #23

    I don’t know if I agree with the idea we’re losing potential switchers because people want to run Windows on their Macs.

    It’s not as if I want the more attractive hardware, the OS X eye candy in the background just so I can run Fusion and Windows XP, Office XP and check all my mail in Outlook.

    I use the OS X ports of Firefox and Thunderbird for browsing and mail, Neo Office for documents, etc.

    However, some people *have* to run Windows for work, but otherwise want to use OS X. I like the old Sim games, some of which were never ported to Mac, and those that were still won’t run natively. I’ll still have to play them in a virtual environment, whether emulating the classic Mac OS in Baselisk II or running the Windows versions in Fusion.

    I despise Windows. I bought a MacBook because I prefer Macs. But if I can use Windows on the side in OS X to do everything I want on my MacBook, why shouldn’t I?

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  • Posted: 20 August 2007 12:27 PM #24

    Re: New iMacs - Best App to Run Windows

    [quote author=“obewon86”]Honest assessments, please?

    Just some thoughts on items I’ve seen in this thread.

    1) Spyware, a/v, etc. - in regards to the Mac, what is stated about this not being an issue is correct. As it relates to Windows, however, just because you’re running Windows on the Mac itself does not make you immune to the security issues experienced by other Windows users. In other words, take the normal precautions you’ve been utilizing and feel comfortable with on the Windows side (be it Boot Camp, Parallels, VMware, Crossover).

    2) Crossover - From what I understand, it will work with some Windows apps and not with others. It seems to be a great solution if the app you need is compatible. I suspect you’d be able to Google “Crossover” and “<your app name>” to see if others have been successful.

    3) Boot Camp - This seems to be a love-it or hate-it relationship. The biggest drawback is that it requires re booting and you can’t cut-and-paste info between Mac apps and Windows apps. OTOH, the biggest selling point is that you’re actually running a Windows machine. At one point, I recall that the fastest Windows-based laptop on the market was a MacBook Pro.

    4) I’ve had my MBP for nearly 18 months. I really thought I’d install Windows and at least Boot Camp. I never have. Why? I’d honestly live with the very few workarounds and limitations that I have (all related to either GroupWise or an electronic marquee that I have responsibility for) than to deal with Windows and the problems it introduces.

         
  • Posted: 20 August 2007 01:10 PM #25

    Thanks Again for All the Help

    Tnks to all the helpful comments.

    OB-1

         
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    Posted: 20 August 2007 06:36 PM #26

    Re: Paralells and Boot Camp, both best?

    [quote author=“shorton”]I am about to become the owner of a new MacbookPro and plan to run parallels. However, I am considering setting up boot camp first so that when (or if ever) I want full speed with windows I can have it but plan to use parallels the vast majority of the time. I plan to run Vista. (Yes, I paid the MS tax and have a supported version for virtualization, geez…)

    That said, are there any recommendations regarding formatting the new hard drive, partition size, etc. that you would recommend given that there seem to be choices to be made here? Do I need to repartition the new hard disk before running Apple’s ‘Migration Assistant?’

    TIA,

    Shorton :idea:

    The Boot Camp setup assistant handles partitioning well, so I would use the migration assistant first, then use boot camp to set up Windows, then have Parallels (or VMware) load Windows off of the Boot Camp partition.  That seems to be the easiest way to me.

    I’m currently use this setup, but with VMWare Fusion’s beta, which probably just expired on me, as it told me I had 6 days left about 6 days ago. grin  Setup works great, except that every time I use Windows in Boot camp vs VMWare I have to re-activate Windows. (It’s easy, just annoying.)

         
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    Posted: 20 August 2007 07:04 PM #27

    Re: New iMacs - Best App to Run Windows

    [quote author=“dux5”]2) Crossover - From what I understand, it will work with some Windows apps and not with others. It seems to be a great solution if the app you need is compatible. I suspect you’d be able to Google “Crossover” and “<your app name>” to see if others have been successful.

    3) Boot Camp - This seems to be a love-it or hate-it relationship. The biggest drawback is that it requires re booting and you can’t cut-and-paste info between Mac apps and Windows apps. OTOH, the biggest selling point is that you’re actually running a Windows machine. At one point, I recall that the fastest Windows-based laptop on the market was a MacBook Pro.

    As I recall, CrossOver for Mac is based on WINE.  As such, it isn’t a true Windows software package, its just an attempt to emulate the API.  At best, the WINE package has been iffy, there is no reason to think that CrossOver would be any different.  If you look at the CNet article I linked to, you will find this product is mentioned, but didn’t show up in many of the tests.  I figured it was due to the functionality of the software.

    Another drawback to Boot Camp is that it is XP only.  The drivers in the Boot Camp software package will not support Win 9x machines, or NT/2000.  Apple even states it has to be XP with service pack 2.  This does make Boot Camp a little less flexible than the other two.  Both Parallels and Fusion support 9x, 2000, NT, MSDOS, Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris x86 (and some others that vary between the two).  Depending on what you want to do, Boot Camp can be very limiting.

    With regards to the license issue mentioned earlier, it might be easier to find an unused copy of 98 or NT lying around than XP SP2, so maybe buying Fusion or Parallels and using it with an available license from an older Microsoft OS would be cheaper than procuring an XP license to use with Boot Camp.  Food for thought anyway.

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