Those with an iMac that run Windows too [Archive] - Glock Talk


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09-17-2010, 18:13

I am considering the purchase of a new iMac. I'm an experienced Windows user but have never owned a Mac. I would like to have the ability to run Windows using vmWare Fusion or the Apple OS loader so I can run Windows without rebooting the MacOS. I have a few questions for those with experience. I'm not planning to use Windows all the time but I would like the option for testing or whatever.

To run Windows in a vm or MacOS equivalent virtual session can I get by with:

i3 with 4 gigs RAM ?

i5 with 4 gigs RAM ?

I don't play games or render a lot of videos. I do notice when a computer is working real hard or paging memory to hard disk. How much memory is available after the OS loads ?

Any suggestions will be appreciated.

09-17-2010, 18:31
i use parallels to run windows within OSX on my macbook pro. it works great when needed. mine has a 2.5 Ghz duo core processor with 4 Mb ram. no troubles.

09-17-2010, 18:39
I run my XP instance in a VM on my MacBook Pro all the time. I have 4GB of RAM and I assign 1GB to the VM. Works fine. If you have a lot of apps open on the Windows instance you might bump that up to 1.5GB or 2GB. You should figure at least 500MB for MacOS, not including apps.

Memory and I/O is far more important than CPU. I have a Core2Duo and I am not for want of CPU speed. I have an SSD which speeds things up tremendously, including the VM.


09-17-2010, 18:53
2008 2.53Ghz C2D MacBook Pro that previously ran WinXP and then Win7 32-Bit on Virtual Box (free by the way) just fine with 4GB of system RAM. I split the RAM 50/50 between the OSs. On the odd occasion I had to do something intensive on Windows, I allocated 2.5GB of RAM to it and everything ran fine. Virtual Box didn't seem to like me adding more than 2.5GB of RAM to Win7.
Currently I'm running Win7 32-Bit and openSUSE 11.4 64-Bit on a 2010 MacBook Pro 2.4Ghz i5 with 8GB of RAM and using VMWare Fusion 3.1. Again everything runs just fine. Since the i5 is Quad Core, one has the option of running 2 VMs + Mac OS at the same time by allocating 2 cores to Mac OS and one to each VM. I have 2GB allocated to both VMs when they are running at the same time, and 4GB when they run one at a time.
I don't play games or do much video either. Most of my use is scripting and occassionally compiling installation packages in openSUSE. On Win7 it's generally an instance of corporate Exchange email, some Word docs, maybe a Visio diagram and perhaps a MS Project sheet. Pretty tame stuff, but they all are somewhat memory hungry applications and run fine on 2GB. Best of all I can still run iTunes on Mac OS in the background with GlockTalk open in Safari and other miscellaneous junk running as well.
Good luck, you should be fine!

09-17-2010, 19:26
+1 on VirtualBox. I actually bought Fusion but run VB now. Faster, smaller, works great. VMWare has some nifty features, no question, but it's more than I need/want.


09-17-2010, 20:24
Thank you that is very helpful. I'm going i3 27 inch 4 gig

09-18-2010, 06:15
Thank you that is very helpful. I'm going i3 27 inch 4 gig

I just got a 27" iMac to replace the 20" iMac I had. It has 8gb RAM. I'm using parallels, which if I read correctly, can either boot Windows in a VM, or you can boot the machine directly to the Windows Bootcamp partition. (install to bootcamp first)

Just got it yesterday, so I'm not completely up to speed with the new version of Parallels 6.

I'm really a hard core windows guy, but I need to do testing in VM's and need to start learning to develop on this thing for both OSX and iOS.

It looks nice on the desk too!

10-09-2010, 17:26
I bought the 27 inch iMac last week. I also installed Windows 7 with bootcamp. I find that Win7 applications run fine using Parallels and the Coherence option works great for running Win7 applications within OSX.

One thing I have not been able to solve which seems like it should be very simple (google searches didn't produce much) is I have not been able to copy files from one USB connected disk to another USB disk. I have both drives on the desktop and I can copy files from USB to the Mac disk but when I attempt to drag and drop a file from one USB disk to another it gives me a circle with a line through it as I drag it and then of course it doesn't copy. I have tried holding the command key at the same time.

The display is the finest I have come across. I have a 26 inch Viewsonic Pro at work and IMO the iMac display is much better. 2560x1440 resolution is certainly better than 1920x1200 but the colors are so much better. Although $1699 is EXTREMELY expensive for an i3 processor based computer I still think it was worth it just for the display alone. If you price equivalent displays none are under $1000. I also appreciate the solid aluminum case.

I can type just as well using the small keyboard it comes with but I will likely purchase the full keyboard with numeric pad in the usual spot. It looks a bit awkward to see the huge screen with tiny keyboard sitting in front.

Wondering if anyone else has run across the drive to drive USB copy thing.