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Parallels Desktop For Mac Vs. VMware

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the when-it-positively-has-to-run-windows dept.

Windows 195

neilticktin writes "MacTech performed an exhaustive set of benchmarks comparing Parallels Desktop 4 to VMWare Fusion 2 to run Windows on a Mac. To tackle this problem, MacTech undertook a huge benchmarking project starting in December — over 2500 tests by stopwatch. The goal was to see how the recent versions of VMWare Fusion and Parallels Desktop performed on different levels of Mac hardware, using XP, Vista, 64-bit, multi-procs, games, etc. ... As usual, results vary by what's important to you."

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Citrix? (0, Offtopic)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068849)

No Citrix XenServer? That is the most sophisticated of the free virtualization products. They should include it in the comparison. Especially since VMware ESXi doesn't work with, well, lots and lots of hardware.

Re:Citrix? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27068877)

How does Xen compare to my cock?

Re:Citrix? (5, Funny)

mevets (322601) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068919)

They are both tiny, and only adequate for virtual applications.

Re:Citrix? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070779)

Hilarious! Kudos.

Re:Citrix? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27068941)

And since I'm a Mac user I can go around flaunting my cock. I'm not a geek! I'm a free thinker!

Re:Citrix? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069025)

And since you're a Mac user you always have someone else's in your hiney.

Desktop Comparison (4, Informative)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068925)

This is a desktop comparison, VMware ESXi is of the server variety and I assume by the name Citrix XenServer is as well.

Re:Desktop Comparison (2, Informative)

shitzu (931108) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069781)

The idea is to compare virtualization solutions running on Mac OSX. VMWare ESX does NOT run on OSX.

Re:Desktop Comparison (1)

khellendros1984 (792761) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070799)

In fact, ESX *is* an operating system, originally based on some sort of Redhat...although I suspect that VMWare has modified it into its own OS.

Re:Citrix? (4, Informative)

Lucid 3ntr0py (1348103) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068939)

ESXi is not for 90% of home users. It is built for large scale hosting where VMfusion and Parallels are often used for single client instances.

'Fusion' ne 'ESX' (5, Insightful)

joe_n_bloe (244407) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069349)

That would be 99.99% of home users. It's hard to conceive of an application for ESX[i] at "home," given Fusion and Workstation. ESX is heavyweight and particular in its hardware requirements, nontrivial to manage (especially with the free license), and just generally not the right thing if you don't have a spare tower server or DC handy, a full license, and someone else to pay your power bill. Although, in those circumstances, it's pretty cool.

(A bunch of the remaining .01% are going to explain why I'm wrong now.)

Disclaimer: I work for VMware. (And I would run ESX at home if there was a reason to.)

Re:'Fusion' ne 'ESX' (1)

Lucid 3ntr0py (1348103) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069423)

Dev environment at home. I have a large environment at home for testing. I left out the 10% because I have no idea how many people would do that.

Re:'Fusion' ne 'ESX' (2, Insightful)

joe_n_bloe (244407) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069581)

I'd use ESX at home if I had the hardware sitting around ... but ... even though SC1430s (for example) are fairly cheap, I don't want to pay to keep them running (or deal with power cycling).

But, agreed, IF you are one of that tiny number of people who can afford or justify HW/license/electricity, then it can be very useful at home.

ESX[i] will run on a variety of unsupported hardware (don't ask me, we don't even keep a list around here because no one really knows), so it is possible to run it on cheap, low-power commodity hardware if you're willing to experiment.

Disclaimer: I work for VMware.

Re:'Fusion' ne 'ESX' (1)

Lucid 3ntr0py (1348103) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070491)

ESXi is more of a bear (in my experience) to wrangle than ESX.Note I mainly put ESX on HP360s. But I use the ESXi at home. It is actually a std config at my company to give new employees cheap boxes, ($500), to put ESXi on for development.

BTW. I am a big VMware fan. Makes my job siiiimple. (IT Ops)

Re:Citrix? (1)

51M02 (165179) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069057)

Being on /. I should not asked if you read the article (I don't so why asking anyway) but this is a comparative between virtualizations solutions on Apple hardware and software using the VT technology found on new Intel chips to run unmodified guest x86 operating system. Main target : playing DirectX games.

Putted in other words is a comparative between two consumer grade virtualization software for Mac OS X. No datacenter, just plain old home computer.

Re:Citrix? (2, Informative)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069819)

If you want to play DirectX games, you are probably best using Boot Camp, or finding a native version of the game. Neither Parallels nor VMWare will reliably support anything later than DirectX 8, most recent games, certainly anything where performance is an issue, requires DirectX 9.

I use Parallels to run MS Access and Visio - there is no native versions of either of these for Mac, and a few accounting programs that are Windows only.

Re:Citrix? (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070279)

I use Parallels to run MS Access and Visio - there is no native versions of either of these for Mac

Have you tried using OmniGraffle [omnigroup.com] . It's far superiour to Visio, at least from my point of view.

For Access... well... you could consider using a real database. Stuff like PostgreSQL runs fine in Mac OS X. I create little database applications with a web frontend using some simple PHP/Perl/Python/Ruby/whatever scripts to talk to the database all the tim, it's really easy to do and a lot more robust and portable than Access will ever be.

Apparently the final benchmark is still underway (5, Funny)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068933)

Slashdotted already? Bummer. I have a feeling I know what the conclusion page says... "Do NOT host a web server with IIS on a Macbook running Windows in VMware Fusion"

Re:Apparently the final benchmark is still underwa (4, Insightful)

Sorthum (123064) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069825)

Gee, who would have thought that spreading your article across TEN BLOODY PAGES would increase the load on your servers? Idiots and their ad impressions...

Re:Apparently the final benchmark is still underwa (1)

neilticktin (660748) | more than 5 years ago | (#27071153)

Sorry ... all is better now. Try it again. OpenAds was having trouble and once we figured that out, all is fine. Thanks - Neil

free? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27068947)

Parallels and Fusion are not free products.

Re:free? (4, Informative)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069039)

I would have liked to see Sun's VirtualBox [virtualbox.org] thrown into the mix. I use Fusion and "love" it (as much as one can love having to use Windows), but a free alternative would be nice.

That being said, I also use Crossover (WINE) for quite a few things (IE6, RegexBuddy) so I don't have to launch a full VM image.

The article is loading (slowly) through Coral cache [nyud.net]

Re:free? (5, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069241)

I switched from Parallels Desktop to VirtualBox and it has one feature which I really like; the ability to run for over a week without causing a kernel panic. This was something the version of Parallels I paid for couldn't do. Apparently they messed up the IPI handling (doing something that was wrong but relatively harmless on the Core 1, and very bad on the Core 2), but the only way of 'fixing' the problem way to buy the next version of the product. Since I don't like paying for bug fixes, I never found out if the new version actually did fix the problem, but there's no way I'd give the company any money after that.

VirtualBox got off to a slow start. There were some issues for a long while that prevented it from running FreeBSD in guests, but they were fixed with the 2.1.2 release. Now it works very well, and I didn't have to pay anything to go from the old release to the one that actually works (or for the original release, for that matter). The latest version apparently supports 3D on Windows guests, but I don't have a Windows install set up at the moment so I haven't been able to test this.

Re:free? (2, Insightful)

deweller (266610) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069679)

I also couldn't run Parallels more than 15 minutes on my Mac Pro without it causing a kernel panic. I'm glad to hear someone else had the same problem.

I switched to VMWare Fusion and haven't looked back.

Re:free? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069803)

I like virtual box... however:
  • FreeBSD 7 (guest) crashes with disk geometry errors
  • NetBSD 5 (guest) couldn't install
  • OpenStep (guest) installed but couldn't boot.
  • I can consistently crash the windows guest by accessing my networks places or copying more than 1 file to the shared folder.

Re:free? (1)

mikkelm (1000451) | more than 5 years ago | (#27071047)

Then why do you like VirtualBox?

Re:free? (1)

EastCoastSurfer (310758) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070451)

I've used VMWare fusion extensively. It has for the most part worked great. I recently tried Parallels to play some windows game. It's terrible. I tried using Parallels in my day to day work and it constantly messes up in random ways. I just switched back to Fusion today and will uninstall Parallels when I get a change later today.

WINE on Macs and beyond (1)

Rob Y. (110975) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070271)

I agree that for many things WINE is a good solution, with a lot less overhead. And, theoretically, much lower cost (no Windows license required - though Crossover isn't free).

Actually, I wonder why more folks don't use WINE or WINELIB to port Windows stuff to the Mac. I think WINELIB needs higher visibility in general.

Also, with a new generation of ARM-based netbooks on the horizon, I'm wondering whether there's a decent open source X86 emulator that could be paired with WINE to run Windows apps under Linux on these things. X86 emulation with WINE should be much faster than, say, VirtualPC was on the old PowerPC Macs. With VirtualPC, you had to emulate everything, including most of the Windows API. But WINE would provide the Windows API as native ARM code. Only the application logic would have to be emulated. I think that would result in surprisingly acceptable performance.

Stopwatch != accurate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27068955)

Stopwatch != accurate...

"Oh sorry, I pressed the button 50ms too late!"

Re:Stopwatch != accurate (4, Insightful)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069451)

When you're comparing performance of compressing an 8GB folder with 1000 files, or total time to encode a 2-hour movie, it's perfectly acceptable to use a stopwatch, and have your margin of error be +/- 1 second.

Re:Stopwatch != accurate (1)

argiedot (1035754) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070729)

Who wouldn't they just use 'time' or the equivalent, anyway? Or some python script that does that? Much less trouble, and more accurate (albeit unimportantly so) results.

Slashdotted after 3 comments (4, Interesting)

guruevi (827432) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068963)

Well, apparently they shouldn't run their server in virtualization software.

Either way, I like Parallels better because it's so much better integrated (albeit more expensive) and easier to use. It also has better support for DirectX and OpenGL than VMWare which is something I needed (OpenGL).

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (5, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069007)

Personally, I prefer VirtualBox [virtualbox.org] . It has all the features you expect of a professional VM (rootless desktop, 3D acceleration, drive passthrough, etc.) but is available for the low-low price of $0.

The situation looks a bit different if you're going to use it for business purposes, but for home use there is no better option than VirtualBox.

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069229)

Does VirtualBox allow you to run your BootCamp partition in a virtual machine? Last time I check it didn't. Otherwise, it is a fine product.

I must the admit that the number of times I actually boot into windows has diminished drastically (As well as using windows period), but it is nice to be able to have Windows run natively when you have to play a Windows only game and still be able to bring it up on within a virtual machine when you need to use Windows to run some old piece of software.

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (4, Interesting)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069455)

Does VirtualBox allow you to run your BootCamp partition in a virtual machine? Last time I check it didn't.

As far as I know, this has not changed. However, it is possible to extract the Bootcamp partition into a VDMK which VirtualBox can read. I've never done it before, so try it at your own risk.

I must the admit that the number of times I actually boot into windows has diminished drastically

What's this "windows" you speak of? I use VirtualBox for alternative operating systems! :-P

Actually, I did setup one Windows 7 VM so my wife could use an educational CD she needs. Other than that, I haven't found a lot of reason to use Windows on my Mac. I imagine I would have a few more if I didn't have an older Windows XP desktop hanging around, but even that tends to run cross-platform software. (Even Microsoft Office has been successfully replaced with OpenOffice!)

All told, the age of Windows lock-in is fading rapidly. Just about all native software these days either has a Mac version or a good Mac alternative available. Interestingly, FireFox shows markedly better graphics performance on the Mac over the PC. I haven't figured that one out yet. :-/

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069943)

I don't know about Virtualbox for Mac, so you may very well be right, but I do the equivalent in Ubuntu

I boot my primary windows partition as a VM inside my secondary ubuntu partition

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (1)

davidavdav (1077759) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069233)

I second that

Uhhh, it does? (0)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069247)

Best info I can find googling around says that VirtualBox doesn't support 3D acceleration, and adding it would be difficult. http://forums.virtualbox.org/viewtopic.php?t=16 [virtualbox.org] is the first hit (and from the VB site).

Re:Uhhh, it does? (4, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069377)

That's from nearly two years ago. There's now support for hardware accelerated 3D. From section 4.8 of the user manual:

Starting with version 2.1, the VirtualBox Guest Additions for Windows contain experimental hardware 3D support.

With this new feature, if an application inside your Windows guest uses 3D features
through the OpenGL programming interfaces, these will not be emulated in software
(which is slow), but instead VirtualBox will attempt to use your host's 3D hardware.
This works for all supported host platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris), provided
that your host operating system can make use of your accelerated 3D hardware in the
first place.

Re:Uhhh, it does? (1)

domatic (1128127) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069527)

This is true but it isn't yet lashed to Direct3D for Windows guests nor it OGL supported for Linux guests. This means that OGL programs can be run on Windows but Direct3D programs will still use software rendering. At least for now.

Games? (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069685)

Does that mean we can play PC games?

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (1)

DesertBlade (741219) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069777)

Virtual Box rocks, cross platform and I swear it is faster running Windows on my home box versus the ESX server I run stuff on at work.

Re:Slashdotted after 3 comments (2, Interesting)

SoVeryTired (967875) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069915)

Virtualbox is very nice, but it really needs to improve the "snapshot" backup functionality. It's a bit unintuitive: I've read numerous posts by people who lost backups by irreversibly deleting snapshots by accident. The GUI gives no warning when you choose to perform some irreversible action like discarding a snapshot.

  Backups really need to improve in VB before it becomes competetive with VMware.

Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (4, Interesting)

iamacat (583406) | more than 5 years ago | (#27068973)

Both products fail miserably at running anything older than XP. VMWare still wins here, since at least it manages to install and run 98SE successfully, while Parallels install suffers from endless crashes. But even a trivial DX game like "Lose your marbles" results in a blank screen, while it works perfectly fine in VPC for Mac on 5 year old hardware. There are many older applications and games that do not run on XP. Just how hard would it be to emulate an S3 video card and SB16 so that we can run whatever we fill like in the VM?

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069393)

. Just how hard would it be to emulate an S3 video card and SB16 so that we can run whatever we fill like in the VM?

Well, DOSBox [dosbox.com] does a decent job. But that's a self-supported donationware project. To include that sort of functionality in a commercial product, you have to hire people not only to do the development and tweaking, but to support customers who use the feature. Just not worth it for companies like Parallels and VMware to go to all that trouble for a few customers that want to play abandonware games.

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069651)

Well, how about abandon-ware business applications?

I simply don't think VMWare and Parallels have thought this through. Most home MacOSX users who want windows emulation and are savvy enough to set it up have been using computers for at least a decade. Its highly likely that they have a favorite game or app that would influence them to choose the product that supports it. On the other hand, businesses are notorious for not upgrading even apps written when MS-DOS just came out.

It would be much easier to have a general purpose product that can be used with any OS of user's choice than to try to quantify every possible use case.

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070325)

Well, how about abandon-ware business applications?

Yeah, that's a huge market. And it's full of customers with deep pockets!

I simply don't think VMWare and Parallels have thought this through.

Uh, have you ever worked for a company that actually makes and sells software? I have, and support costs are big factor in all our business decisions. Trust me, we think these things through. Our jobs depend on it!

Most home MacOSX users who want windows emulation and are savvy enough to set it up have been using computers for at least a decade. Its highly likely that they have a favorite game or app that would influence them to choose the product that supports it.

If they don't need support, why spend money on Parallels or VMware? DOSBox and xVM VirtualBox are free.

It would be much easier to have a general purpose product that can be used with any OS of user's choice than to try to quantify every possible use case.

Yeah, because coping with the quirks of 16-bit Windows is so easy...

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (2, Insightful)

Jeremi (14640) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070765)

Yeah, that's a huge market. And it's full of customers with deep pockets!

What makes you so sure it's not? I bet it's pretty common for a company to have an in-house app that was custom-written for them back in the day, which works fine for them. Ten years later, they still want to run that app, but they can no longer easily find hardware that supports the OS the app was written for. So now their choice is either re-write the app from scratch (an expensive and risky project; the people who wrote the original version are long gone of course) or spend $70/seat on a virtualization product to keep the original program running. For a company with thousands of seats, that would be a major opportunity for VMWare or Parallels or whomever to make a large amount of money.

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070157)

Win2k works fine on my Mac Mini using Virtualbox

Re:Most importantly, it depends on which Windows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070309)

Windows 2000 works great on VMWare, too. I use it all the time, although I'm finding a lot of new applications are now requiring XP SP2. Sigh.

This violates VMware's EULA (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069005)

VMware states that you can not post benchmarks. This is why there are no benchmarks out there comparing it.

Prepare to have your page deactivated.

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (0, Flamebait)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069095)

They do that because its performance is not that good compared to the other solutions. It is good, but no where near worth the money good.

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (2, Insightful)

jimbudncl (1263912) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070193)

They do it because people were posting benchmarks based on mis-configured systems. It would be like running a 3D benchmark on the latest-n-greatest new $600 video card, but without installing 3D accelerated drivers. If it were your product, you'd want competent people posting "authoritative" benchmarks (that laymen would consider "authoritation").

Think about it.

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069279)

wrong. they won't say jack shit least they invoke the streisand effect.

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070185)

From Fusion EULA:

You may use the Software to conduct internal performance testing and benchmarking studies, the results of which you (and not unauthorized third parties) may publish or publicly disseminate; provided that VMware has reviewed and approved of the methodology, assumptions and other parameters of the study. Please contact VMware at benchmark@vmware.com to request such review.

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (5, Informative)

ganhawk (703420) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070211)

Wrong! VMware only wants to review the methodology and approve it. You do not have to get the results approved.

From register.vmware.com/content/eula.html

"you (and not unauthorized third parties) may publish or publicly disseminate; provided that VMware has reviewed and approved of the methodology, assumptions and other parameters of the study. Please contact VMware at benchmark@vmware.com to request such review."

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (1)

EastCoastSurfer (310758) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070527)

Exactly. Basically if the #s are horrible they want to be able to look at them and say "you're an idiot for not clicking the little box for hardware acceleration before running your benchmark."

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (1)

lubricated (49106) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070935)

sounds just as bad

Re:This violates VMware's EULA (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070235)

Posting to slashdot was a means of enforcing the EULA.

Sun virtualbox (4, Interesting)

MacColossus (932054) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069031)

I have tested all three of these products. I like Sun Virtualbox not just for price (free) but for performance.

Re:Sun virtualbox (1)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069261)

Also, a big chunk of Virtualbox code is free (as in freedom) that's anything thing to appreciate.

Re:Sun virtualbox (4, Interesting)

QAChaos (793637) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069287)

i also have always liked virtual box - i was surprised at a mac store one time - a customer asked if vmware or parallels was better and the sales person actually suggested that they try virtual box.

Re:Sun virtualbox (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069297)

Bwahahaha, right. You didn't actually try VMware did you?

Try this:
1. Install XP or Vista in VirtualBox
then
2. Install XP or Vista in VMware Workstation

and you can use a stopwatch. Hell, you don't even need any timer, it will be quite obvious which one is faster.

Plus VirtualBox has no 3D support, its USB support sucks (well, they all do but VB is really bad), it's missing all kinds of features, etc, etc.

Here's an example of the poor programming in VirtualBox:

Start something that uses virtualization hardware of your CPU (like a 64-bit VirtualBox machine), then try to start a 64-bit VMware machine. VMware will complain about the CPU features being in use. Now try the reverse situation. First start a 64-bit VMware machine then fire up VirtualBox... Boom! Your VMware machine will be killed and all sorts of bad stuff happens because VirtualBox doesn't even check if the CPU is available.

Re:Sun virtualbox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070201)

Too bad VirtualBox has 3D support. I haven't tried the USB support on OSX yet, but it used to work earlier. And exactly what features is it missing? A lot of options are just not wired into the UI, like NAT, SCSI emulation, etc, etc. You should really RTFM.

And check your stopwatch again, VB isn't slower than VMWare.

Re:Sun virtualbox (1)

samkass (174571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070831)

VirtualBox supports OpenGL acceleration on Windows hosts. It's USB support is, indeed more limited. It also may, depending on your configuration, interfere with other virtual machines (you can turn on and off hardware-assisted virtualization, and in software-only mode it doesn't conflict).

But it's free and definitely acceptable performance for casual use, thus should always be the first thing you try, IMHO.

Have a go at VirtualBox (1)

Ron Bakker (539650) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069073)

If you've never tried it, please do so. It's free and easy to setup. Supports all major platforms.

I find it is quite fast. Supports also VT-x/AMD-V, and propagates 3D support from host to guest as OpenGL.

http://www.virtualbox.org/ [virtualbox.org]

Ron

Always funny to me... (2, Insightful)

Slash.Poop (1088395) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069079)

When people by a Mac and then run Windows on it.

I always laugh. Like now.

Re:Always funny to me... (3, Insightful)

MacColossus (932054) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069161)

When I am forced to run Windows because are DBA isn't willing to use something cross platform for trouble ticket system it sucks. I get to devote large portions of drive space for MS Access. Web based (postgre or mysql anyone) or Filemaker Pro would be nice. When mac users have to run Windows, it is usually do to the fanboyish attitude of some Windows user.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

Ron Bakker (539650) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069179)

Yes ... I have a lot of fun with it :) as a developer.

Re:Always funny to me... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069185)

Then you wet your pants and scream out in vain for the delicious taste of vegemite, you Aussie fuck!

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

shinzawai (964083) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069669)

mmmmmmmmmm vegemite. (Auusie fuck)

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

shinzawai (964083) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069687)

Sorry, an Aussie fuck who cannot type.

Re:Always funny to me... (5, Informative)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069403)

I can't speak for Mac use, but I've used Linux pretty much full time for the last few years. I am a freelance translator, and have, for the most part, been able to function fine without any Microsoft products. There is one program that is fairly industry-standard though: Trados. It only runs on Windows. There *ARE* viable alternatives, however, agencies insist on assigning/receiving projects in that format.

It sucks that I am sometimes forced to use it, but I lose a sale if I don't.

That's my reasoning for needing a Windows instance, and I bet my situation is not that uncommon.

Re:Always funny to me... (2, Interesting)

Malc (1751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069555)

I just wish I could get OS X Leopard running in VMWare PLayer on XP. I installed OS X Server 10.5 using VMWare Fusion, and got it booting under VMWare Player, but it's running in to problems before logon (looping with mds and ATSServer crashing). Would much rather have the desktop OS working though as we develop cross platform software for Mac and Windows, but we're a Windows shop first and foremost. I just need somewhere to compile, debug and unit test the Mac code, and don't currently have budget for a Mac to do this with using BootCamp.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070111)

...we develop cross platform software for Mac and Windows... ...and don't currently have budget for a Mac to do this with using BootCamp.

You have multiple employee but can't afford $500 for a last generation Mac-mini? Sounds like whoever is allocating your budget is an idiot.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

Malc (1751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070951)

Actually, that's just least of the issues, and probably shouldn't have mentioned it. I have perfectly good Dell M6300, why would I want another machine? Especially as the Mac stuff is only part-time for me. I do Blu-ray work, and that machine has a built-in BD drive, and is more suited to playing back HD movies with BD-J applications. Using a Mac would require hauling around a BD drive in an enclosure (which I used to do a couple of years ago, and that was a pain). Also, BootCamp partitions are 32GB, although presumably I could do all the Windows work in Fusion, but I'd rather not. Finally, I'm on the road a lot (I currently don't even have an apartment back home) and am already hauling around three laptops - I've got enough crap, I don't want any more, especially as my back-breaking carry-on luggage is overweight and it's probably only the Star Alliance Gold card thats saved me from some over-officious airline staff saying no. A Mac mini would definitely not be sufficient for the job, so your point is moot.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

shitzu (931108) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069813)

Neither vmware nor parallels is limited to windows guests. I run several different Linux, BSD (and win) virtual machines on a mca to test things. You can laugh if you want to.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

xouumalperxe (815707) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070131)

People who buy a Mac and run Windows exclusively I don't get. But I personally feel comfortable in both Windows and OS X, prefer OS X for most of my non-professional activities, yet am more or less forced to use Windows for the majority of my work-related activities (what can I say? SAP's Java client lacks several important features...). It's sad that you find it laugh-worthy that people like me enjoy having a choice.

Re:Always funny to me... (1)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070425)

I make iPhone apps and web apps (mostly front-end work). Now obviously I'd need XCode which is Mac-only. But even if you take away the iPhone apps, Mac is still much easier to set up and use as a developer's machine. e.g. consider the things you need to set up before you have all the tools you need:

Windows
  1. UNIX tools - I *need* UNIX tools, I can't live without grep. So Cygwin is a must. Takes hours to download and set up, and it's slow.
  2. Text editor - I use vim. The one in Cygwin doesn't cut it because I want a native one usable via context menus. After setting it up, I need to modify the config files to set things like default encoding, color scheme and visual mode keys.
  3. Scripting languages and compilers - PHP, Perl, Python, gcc and the whole GNU toolchain. Cygwin provides those, but those are, again, slow.
  4. Servers - Cygwin provides them, again. But I still prefer to run native servers. Usually I'd set up a native Apache and then an OpenSSH from within Cygwin.
  5. Browsers - Needed for testing and debugging. IE comes with Windows but I need multiple IE versions so I'd need to install IETester as well. And then I'd need to install Firefox, Safari, Opera and Chrome.
  6. Screencast - Needed for demonstrating stuff to customers or making tutorials. I used to use CamStudio, but now I use Jing.
  7. Document viewers and editors - Windows's built-in stuff opens almost nothing by themselves. MS Office, Adobe Acrobat, GIMP, ec.
  8. Media codecs - required to view videos of all strange formats given by customers or other developers. Also required when the need arises to encode videos. I use CCCP.
  9. Browser plugins and addons - Flash and Java are obviously required and takes a tiny little time to set up. Other things include Firebug, IE developer toolbar, MS Script Debugger (the "newer" debugger offered in MS Office is too damned slow), etc.
  10. File archiving tools - Windows comes with almost none of them. The first thing I set up is usually 7-zip since it is free and decompresses most archives. But pretty soon I'll need WinRAR and WinACE as there're always some .rar and .ace archives that can't be opened by 7-zip. For UNIXy things like tar, gz and bzip2 archives there's Cygwin.
  11. Email - Thunderbird. I hate both Outlook and Outlook Express, don't ask me why.
  12. Anti-virus - I use Avast! in my home computers, it's free for domestic use. Doesn't slow the computer down too much, but I hate the popups.
  13. Media players - WMP and Media Player Classic don't cut it for all formats. So I usually need to install RealPlayer and QuickTime. QuickTime and iTunes are usually installed along with Safari. I also need them for my iPhone.

I'm sure there're a lot others but I haven't been using Windows for my productive OS for a whole year now so I must have forgotten some. But as you can see here... it takes a lot of time and lots of reboots to set all these up. And many items in the list are actually duplicated because I want the best solution for a particular job, instead of having something that works but is slow or buggy.

Setting the same thing up in Linux is practically impossible, don't ask me to use Wine. And UI stuff in Linux are generally slower. And having to edit config files in vim or help debug things in the console too many times for what supposedly is working, or should be done in a GUI, isn't fun.

Now, let's see Mac:

  1. UNIX tools - Mac is already UNIX. But the UNIX tools that come with the default installation are rather limited, so, fink. Much less frustrating to download and setup compared to Cygwin.
  2. Text editor - Mac already comes with vim. The vimrc file still needs to be modified a bit, but that's ok. For GUI, I use MacVim.
  3. Scripting languages and compilers - They're installed automatically with XCode, which comes with the iPhone SDK. PHP modules support is non-existent, however. But that's a non-issue for me, my work is mostly on the front end. If I really need that there's always my personal Linux server in the datacenter. The GNU toolchain is also installed with XCode, and they're native so they're fast.
  4. Servers - Mac OS X comes with Apache and OpenSSH and more right out of the box, just go to System Preferences and tick a checkbox.
  5. Browsers - Safari is built-in. So I install Firefox and Opera. For IE I need to go to VMWare Fusion for a lightweight Windows installation.
  6. Screencast - Jing.
  7. Document viewers and editors - Preview opens .pdf files FAST! I love it. MS Office 2004 is still required, and needs a long time to update. Everything that's a pain on the Mac comes from MS. GIMP and Inkscape.
  8. Media codecs - I buy QuickTime Pro so I can encode H.264 videos, and that's usually enough when I need to send out small but long videos. VLC opens everything that QuickTime doesn't.
  9. File archiving tools - UnRarX, UnaceX, StuffIt.
  10. Browser plugins - Firebug. Safari and Opera already comes with their own tools.
  11. Email - Thunderbird.

So you see, there's much less fuss with setting up a Mac for work. Even the setting-up part is much easier - dragging an icon to the Applications folder is 100x faster than waiting for InstallShield to launch. And then there's no antivirus to pop up random messages to distract you and slow down your boot time. So instead of using Windows all the way, it's much better to use Mac for the main productive platform and run Windows in VMWare just for a testing platform. And then Mac is much better at multitasking - I hate it when everything is slowed to a crawl whenever there's disk access in Windows - no matter how much RAM you've added and how much you've overclocked your Core i7.

Re:Always funny to me... (2, Informative)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070541)

Setting the same thing up in Linux is practically impossible, don't ask me to use Wine. And UI stuff in Linux are generally slower. And having to edit config files in vim or help debug things in the console too many times for what supposedly is working, or should be done in a GUI, isn't fun. Now, let's see Mac:

You probably have not used Linux in a long time. You don't have to edit config files as you describe anymore. There are many GUI tools available, depending on your distribution.

Also, everything you list for your Mac setup is easily doable and freely available on a Linux setup, with the exception of Quicktime. And there are plenty of us who think Quicktime is a steaming pile, so we use other, more accessible formats.

Just sayin'.

Re:Always funny to me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070561)

When people by a Mac and then run Windows on it.

I always laugh. Like now.

Like when Windows Admins and Devs in positions of power force you, kicking and screaming, to boot windows just to use one timesheet app because they are not smart enough to write standard HTML and CSS.

An interesting read (2, Interesting)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069091)

I like VMWare partially because I have clients using that to virtualize servers, so I'm familiar with them as a company. I also didn't like how I couldn't completely uninstall Parallels when I tried a demo of it. It left pieces installed and I ended up rebuilding my MBP at one point partially because of that. I don't know that VMWare doesn't do the same thing, so it may be as bad as well. However I'm also more comfortable knowing that they have experience in the server world in general, and not just desktops.

Re:An interesting read (1)

mr_da3m0n (887821) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069219)

I also didn't like how I couldn't completely uninstall Parallels when I tried a demo of it. It left pieces installed and I ended up rebuilding my MBP at one point partially because of that.

Funny you should say that, I had the exact opposite experience. Some vmware scripts and devices are still present on my system, even after vmware fusion is since long gone :(

Re:An interesting read (2, Funny)

Malc (1751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069461)

Makes you wonder why Apple doesn't insist on proper uninstallers, like Windows apps.

Re:An interesting read (1)

sys_mast (452486) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069607)

when was the last time you ever actually uninstalled a windows app and had it uninstall EVERYTHING?

Sorry just trying to figure out if this is flame bait or a genuine statement.

Re:An interesting read (1)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070087)

Looks like you are getting my very first
WOOOOOOOOOSH.

Re:An interesting read (1)

timepilot (116247) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069259)

I agree with you. There is a significant amount of transferability of knowledge between Fusion and VMWare server, and even ESXi.

On top of that, VMWare seems much more stable on the Mac than Parallels. I wound up dumping Parallels after a crash in a vista VM somehow trashed my XP vm. I've had no problems at all running VMWare for the last few months.

I do wish VMware would come out with some of the Server and ESX management tools for OSX. It would really make life simpler.

Re:An interesting read (2, Interesting)

Malc (1751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069435)

Not for me. VMWare Fusion crashes all the time. If I boot Windows and leave it, it's fine. If I boot it and open a web page in IE and leave it, it will freeze in under 10 minutes. I've had a support incident open for six weeks, and I'm getting frustrated with them asking to send the logs again, asking me to try things repeatedly as if they've forgotten they'd already asked me. Now they've gone silent on me. The worst bit is I have to reboot the Mac or I can't restart the VM that froze, only the Mac hangs on shut down after the VM froze and I have to hit and hold the power button.

Re:An interesting read (1)

joe_n_bloe (244407) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069755)

I won't open the can of worms of addressing your case (although I wish I could), but I am using Fusion every time I open my MacBook Pro, and I don't see that kind of instability. I run a mixture of Windows and Linux and "other" VMs simultaneously, and I haven't had the sort of problem you describe since, oh, I stopped doing exciting stuff like running daily builds. I haven't experienced a guest OS crash or freeze in anything resembling recent history.

That's not to say it isn't possible to have an environment that produces crashes, just that my experience isn't like that at all.

Disclaimer: I work for VMware.

Re:An interesting read (1)

Malc (1751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27070085)

It happens with my BootCamp/Vista partition, as well as WinXP and Win Server 2003 VMs. I noticed it first last year with VMWare Fusion 1, but didn't do anything about it because I was living in China (didn't really have time to think about it) and didn't really need Fusion too much at the time. A couple of months ago I upgraded to Fusion 2 and also started to need to use it more seriously, but found the problems still exist and that it's all but unusable. Customer support is beginning to drive me nuts.

Re:An interesting read (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069269)

Uninstalling Parallels isn't too hard. You need to delete the three kexts it installs. It's very bad form for them to load these at boot time, rather than when the program runs, especially since they caused regular kernel panics with the version I bought.

Re:An interesting read (1)

joe_n_bloe (244407) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069399)

You can move VMs from Fusion to Workstation to ESX to Fusion too, with Converter or by copying files (depending). It's handy and I do it regularly. Often it's more convenient for me to build VMs on Fusion and then move them to ESX, even when I'm intending to use the VM only on ESX.

Disclaimer: I work for VMware.

slashdotted but anyone buying/using parallels 4 (4, Interesting)

gearloos (816828) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069205)

I couldn't read the article(/.'d) but I know from personal experience (and reading countless others testimony) that Parallels 4 is a humongous heap of manure. I do own Parallels 3 and 4 but never looked back after purchasing VMware 2. When Parallels sold me the upgrade to 4.0 I backed up 4 virtual machines I had (thankfully) then proceded to spend the next 4 days trying to get it to run ANY of them. The first attempt at each upgrade to v4, following Parallels explicit insructions, resulted in total destruction of the virtual machine(unrecoverable with no way to downgrade it back to v3 to use again). I sent in about 5 support requests that are still TO THIS DAY unanswered from last November. As stated before,the article is slashdotted but I don't actually care what the results are. Parallels can keep their products (like they did my money). I will never do business with that company again.

Article is Flawed (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069361)

FTA:"A few years back, Apple switched the Mac platform from PowerPC to Intel processors. This introduced some interesting opportunities for the Mac, including the ability to run operating systems other than Mac OS X on a Mac"

Wrong. Linux ran and runs on PowerPC based macs. Do your research please...

Re:Article is Flawed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27069887)

He means real operating systems, not hippie operating systems.

Trying a third now (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069657)

Parallels is to problematic in my experience. VMWare seems to work alright but bogs down and locks up occasionally, though it does work a bit better since McAfee was removed. I'm messing with Virtual Box now, so far it's promising but I need to mess with it more. I've run out of reasons to boot Windows, and to chain myself to my desk recently so I haven't been testing it as much as I could.

Graphs do not correspond... (2, Interesting)

spinlight (1152137) | more than 5 years ago | (#27069725)

to the summary in the article. It looks like the author switched the Parallels benchmarks with the VMware benchmarks.

In the majority of overall averages of our tests, Parallels Desktop is the clear winner running 14-20% faster than VMware Fusion. The one exception is for those that need to run Windows XP, 32-bit on 2 virtual processors, VMware Fusion runs about 10% faster than Parallels Desktop.

The exact opposite appears to be the case, according to the legend at the bottom of the graph.

Does Parallells 4 freeze up the system as often... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27070351)

... as Parallels 3 did? Seriously, I've seen more kernel panics in 6 months of using Parallels than I had seen in 15+ years of working on *nix systems.

Hosting server issue resolved, article loads bette (1, Informative)

neilticktin (660748) | more than 5 years ago | (#27071139)

Sorry all for the slowness this morning. Turns out that OpenAds was struggling with the load from being slashdotted. Once we figured that out, everything is loading much better now. Thanks for your patience. Neil Ticktin Publisher/Editor-in-Chief MacTech Magazine
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