I Like Parallels Virtual Machine

Discussion in 'Mac Ham Radio on macOS & iOS' started by N0TZU, Jun 23, 2019.

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  1. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've been using VMware Fusion for many years, but today I tried and switched to Parallels. It really is considerably faster in all respects on my late 2012 Mac Mini in running Win10 and applications. I also didn't need to fiddle with VM settings to get it to work acceptably, as I had with Fusion.

    For the next few days, Parallels is running a sale on the first year cost of the package ($60, normally $80). They have a subscription model, whereas VMware is pay per version, however, updates come about every year so it's close to the same dent in the wallet either way.

    The only problem I had was some annoyance converting the Win10 installation from Fusion to Parallels. The file one needs to convert was listed with the wrong extension in the documentation, which took a call to Parallels support to figure out.

    Then I had to phone Microsoft support and have them show me how to remove the Win10 license key from the Fusion copy and put it on the Parallels copy, because to Win10 they look like two different host computers. It's easy, but not obvious and requires two Win command line operations. Apparently they really want you to go buy another Win10 copy.:rolleyes:

    Now that I know how to do those things it would go much, much faster and easier.
    K3DCW likes this.
  2. K3DCW

    K3DCW QRZ Lifetime Member #212 Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page


    I've been using Parallels for many years now and agree that it seems much faster than Fusion for most tasks. I have the subscription which means continuous updates, and you're correct that the costs are more or less about the same as buying the upgrades each year.

    For those that may be considering the conversion, or simply want to check it out, would you be kind enough to share the WIn10 commands required to transfer the license key so that others may not have to spend time on the phone with Microsoft?

    Thanks for the positive report on Parallels. I rarely use Win10 (only to update my Flex when required), but it is good to know that it works so smoothly in Parallels. 100% reliable and easy to setup.

    N0TZU likes this.
  3. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Here is what MS support said which worked for me.

    First make sure you have the product key in hand and that the license allows transfer of the OS to another machine.
    Delete the product key from Windows under the old VM:
    From CMD line:
    slmgr.vbs /upk (deletes product key)
    slmgr.vbs /cpky (clear from registry)​

    Then on Windows under new VM:
    Go to Windows Settings>Update and Security>Activation and change or enter the product key.
    BTW, I use Win10 mostly for two things I can't get good equivalents for under OS X: Antenna modeling and LTSpice circuit modeling. Once a year or so I might use an RT Systems programmer, N1MM contest logger, and an income tax program.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
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  4. WF7A

    WF7A Subscriber QRZ Page

    For my use, I prefer using Fusion because it isn't subscription-based--I rarely dive into Windows on my personal Mac, so it's more expensive to subscribe to Parallels by paying an annual fee than to skip a few versions of Fusion, then upgrade.
  5. KA8NCR

    KA8NCR Ham Member QRZ Page

    My experience is that Parallels runs like a scalded cat and crashes like Dudley Moore driving a semi truck. I end up using Fusion because of its tight integration with other VMware products like ESXi.
  6. KQ4MM

    KQ4MM XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've used both with good results, use all the VMware products at work, ended up doing WIN10 on my new iMAC using bootcamp.
    With a good SSD drive it boots/reboots OSX or WIN in about 30 seconds.
  7. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Was that an earlier version of Parallels? On the current one I have no issues at all and it starts and shuts down pretty rapidly, and ran Windows applications fine with all default settings, no tweaks needed. And that’s on a late 2012 Mac Mini, not exactly current power user hardware.

    I get spinning beach balls for a few seconds frequently with Fusion. I also had to tweak disc settings to get the last update to work without slowing the entire machine to a crawl. The versions from a few years ago worked better; the last two have gotten slower and slower.
  8. KA8NCR

    KA8NCR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Within a year or two in terms of releases. The biggest headache was their abstracted hardware daemon, particularly the bridged network device, consumed huge amounts of memory even though I wasn't using any virtual machines. Restarting the process, would cause the entire hypervisor take a giant crap.

    Realistically, Parallels ends up being the better deal if you don't need compatibility with the VMWare world. It is definitely a faster product, but it always seem to be on the ragged edge of stability.
    N0TZU likes this.
  9. WA1RKT

    WA1RKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've had decent success with VirtualBox on a MacBook Air High Sierra host, running Win7, Win10, and CentOS guests, no fees no subscription.
  10. KQ4MM

    KQ4MM XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I just ditched bootcamp on a 2018 MBA because I needed to run 32bit Win10. RE-Installed Virtual Box and created a Win10 32bit VM, running like a champ... Using it for SatPC32 to drive a ICOM IC-821H for doppler correction .... no issues at all with USB drivers or anything.

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