OT OS X HD Partitioning, multiple OSs
wjm at wjm.org
Sat Dec 5 09:51:30 EST 2009
Your main choice is to Boot Camp or not to Boot Camp. Your second choice is
which virtual machine product to use.
If you Boot Camp, you gain the advantage that you can reboot your Mac into
Windows natively. This has performance and compatibility benefits,
especially with games that use hardware acceleration.
However you do have to give up hard disk space to the Boot Camp
installation, which can be tricky to resize if you don't have a utility that
will preserve the partition contents when resizing them. So give it as much
space as you can reasonably justify. (I gave mine 80GB out of 320GB.)
You also lose the ability to do "snapshots" of the Windows OS, which both
leading virtual machine products support. (Snapshots let you muck around
with the guest OS and then revert it to its previous state painlessly.)
If you have more than 2GB or RAM, and you decide to Boot Camp, you should
absolutely use Windows 7 Professional 64-bit or you will not be able to
utilize all your RAM. [You're unlikely to give Windows more than 2GB RAM
under a virtual machine.] Otherwise you could get away with Windows XP
Professional or 32-bit Windows 7 Professional. Get an "OEM" version to save
money. You need Professional or better to satisfy Microsoft licensing for VM
use, and to get a decent feature set. Don't waste your time with Vista.
Parallels is decidedly faster than VMware (verified personally and by a few
in-depth reviews out there). It offers the Aero interface from within the
Mac (pretty), and a new presentation option I like called Crystal. Both
products are reportedly somewhat slower with Boot Camp partitions than with
their own virtual ones. I've tried VirtualBox and it completely munged up
one of my Linux partitions before ... only has to happen once.
The Parallels support for Linux is a bit nicer than VMware's, and it's
easier to install their "virtual machine additions" as well. I have tried
both. VMware has a nasty habit of breaking your sound card support or mouse
wheel or worse when it updates itself. This can be maddening to resolve
unless you know Linux inside and out. I own both but use only Parallels now.
You should probably go with Ubuntu, as it's recognized as the leading
If you never will run a Windows game or develop 3D applications with Rev,
and will use Windows only occasionally, then the decision is easy: don't
Boot Camp. This will eliminate the need for partitioning, give you the
maximum usage of hard disk space for the Mac, and run more than well enough
for most purposes.
"jim sims" <sims at ezpzapps.com> wrote in message
news:34483903-4CE5-43E9-90CF-C9F90470D922 at ezpzapps.com...
> I might be getting a 13" 160 GB MacBook Pro
> I'm thinking of using VMware Fusion to add at least one version of
> Windows or maybe more. This will hopefully be my travel machine that I
> want to use for development while away, so I'd like to get all I might
> need in it.
> I usually don't have tons of music, movies, and stuff on my machine so I
> think the 160 GB should do.
> What have other people done with their machines?
> What OS(s) have you loaded - XP, Vista,Windows 7?
> If Linux, what flavor might be the best/most common to develop for?
> How did you partition it? What sizes for each?
> What would you do differently if they did it over again (likely the most
> informative question/answer!)?
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