Should I upgrade to Parallels 4?

From today’s mailbag:

Should I get the new Parallels upgrade?  If so, does it have complete instructions for installation unlike the previous version and will it work with Vista? Should I switch from XP to Vista?  My Windows guy thinks it is now time to do so and that I should run Vista under BootCamp rather than Parallels. Also, he has given me a link which describes how to increase the virtual memory assigned to Parallels on my Mac. The link is:
He says it is quite complicated to do that.

Can you give me a brief outline of how to use the Parallels image tool to increase the disk size?  I have been able to increase the memory from 512 to 1148, but that doesn’t seem to have any effect on increasing the free memory on the C drive. I now have only 6.11GB free space on my C drive!


1 Comment

Filed under Apple Software, Mail Bag, Third Party Software, Windows on a Mac

One response to “Should I upgrade to Parallels 4?

  1. Parallels 4 is brand new. I just got the upgrade notice myself. I have not had a chance to download the software or research its features and review any installation documentation; I’m booked solid on other projects and won’t test the new version of Parallels for at least several days. 

    BootCamp creates a separate partition on your Mac’s internal hard drive that is totally dedicated to the Windows OS that you install. The BootCamp partition is independent of Mac OS X. If you install Windows under BootCamp, you can choose your desired operating system from an onscreen list that will appear after you hold down the Option key immediately after you boot your computer. After you’ve booted into your operating system of choice, you can tell your Mac to reboot into the other OS by making the appropriate selection in Control Panel (on the Windows side) or the Startup Disk pane in System Preferences (on the Mac side). I have only installed and run Windows XP under BootCamp and can not offer any opinion about the merits of using Vista, instead.

    As you found out, the free memory allocation that you can change in the Edit Configuration window of Parallels Desktop is not the same thing as the size of your Parallels (Windows) virtual disk. They represent different components of your Windows system. Think of disk space as a type of filing cabinet. It can either be empty or full or documents that will be accessible after you restart your computer. It represents “permanent” storage. 

    Computer memory, on the other hand, represents volatile and temporary storage. The digital information that it contains disappears if your computer crashes, you close out an application, or restart your computer.

    Parallels Image Tool is a utility that’s located in the same folder as the Parallels application. Pages 8-11 of the Parallels Image Tool user’s guide describes, with screenshots, the procedure for expanding the size of a Parallels virtual machine document. In order to use Parallels Image Tool for this purpose, your Parallels file (e.g., winxp.hdd) must not be in a saved state. In other words, you must first Shut Down and close Windows before running the Image Tool utility.

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