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Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac claims speed superiority

post #1 of 66
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Parallels Desktop 5.0 was released Wednesday, with its developer claiming the latest virtualization software runs 64-bit Windows 7 22 percent faster than its nearest competitor on a MacBook Pro.

Parallels said that the tests, conducted by Crimson Consulting Group, also found that the new Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac is up to 300 percent faster for virtual machine operations than its predecessor. In addition, 3Dmark 2006 Professional test scores perform up to 7 times better for 3D and graphics performance.

"As the OS battles rage between Microsoft, Apple and Linux, we provide a completely customizable solution that enables people to use the applications they need with the fastest performance available, regardless of the operating system," said Serguei Beloussov, CEO of Parallels. "Parallels continues to build on its proven track record of innovation, responding to our customers by providing the fastest, smartest and most powerful Windows-on-Mac experience available."

The latest version of Parallels Desktop features more than 70 new features, including a new "Crystal view" mode, which can make Windows completely disappear. The new software also allows users to enable Apple multitouch trackpad gestures -- such as pinch, swipe, and rotate -- within Windows.

Features within the new Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac include:

Full support for Aero in Windows Vista and 7 through Windows WDDM driver, including Aero Flip 3D.
Virtual machine size automatically optimized for best performance with Parallels Compressor.
Improved performance for Linux guest OS from KVM paravirtualization.


A more Mac-like experience in Windows applications through Apple trackpad gestures technology, horizontal scrolling and the application of full-screen active corners and curl page effect.
Copy and paste fidelity for formatted text and complete layouts including images, even between Windows and Linux guest OSes.
Freedom and flexibility to run Windows and Mac applications across multiple monitors.


Seven times better graphics performance for games and 3D applications than the previous version with Direct X 9Ex with Shader Model 3 and OpenGL 2.1 support.
Superior graphics performance for Linux guests through OpenGL 2.1 support.
Full hardware resources can be utilized with support for 8 virtual CPUs, 64-bit Windows and Snow Leopard Server 64-bit.
Easily move PCs (including Windows 7) and third-party virtual machines to the Mac with the enhanced Parallels Transporter.


Parallels is also offering users a free trial of the software, which the company has touted as faster, smarter and more powerful. The software is available now in English, German, French, Italian and Spanish, and localized versions in Chinese, Czech, Hungarian, Japanese, Polish and Russian are expected in the coming weeks.

At $79.99, Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac includes $175 worth of additional software: Parallels Internet Security 2009 by Kaspersky with a one-year subscription, Acronis Disk Director Suite 10.0, and Acronis True Image Home 2010.



In October, competitor VMWare announced Fusion 3, with more than 50 new features. Like Parallels Desktop 5, Fusion 3 is optimized for both Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard and Windows 7, taking advantage of the 64-bit architecture in both operating systems. VMware Fusion 3 also has a retail price of $79.99.
post #2 of 66
Is the MacBook Pro in that pic a old generation? It has both audio in and out. I thought new ones had only 1 audio port.
post #3 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Strange Lulz View Post

Is the MacBook Pro in that pic a old generation? It has both audio in and out. I thought new ones had only 1 audio port.

Nope; the 15 inch version still has 2 audio ports.
post #4 of 66
I am getting this today ... I was planning on ordering Windoze 7 (OEM) version today so the timing is perfect! I also use VMWare and was about to go with their upgrade but I think I will just get Parallels 5 for now, using the two since their respective day ones, I prefer Parallels for some reason. I can't put my finger on why to be honest.

Does anyone know if 7 allows multiple versions of the same licensed product in VMs if you are on the same Mac and IP? I like to have several as they are all use for testing purposes.
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post #5 of 66
Curious that they would only mention the Macbook Pro.

I wonder if Parallels 5 is lagging behind Fusion 3 when it comes to more than two cores?
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post #6 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

Curious that they would only mention the Macbook Pro.

I wonder if Parallels 5 is lagging behind Fusion 3 when it comes to more than two cores?

According to the article that is not the case...

"Full hardware resources can be utilized with support for 8 virtual CPUs, 64-bit Windows and Snow Leopard Server 64-bit."
post #7 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

Curious that they would only mention the Macbook Pro.

My guess is that its most likely the machine that Parallel customers have, so its a relatable spec to the majority of their user-base.
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post #8 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

My guess is that its most likely the machine that Parallel customers have, so its a relatable spec to the majority of their user-base.

I would think that more folks simply have a Macbook or a mini, not a Macbook Pro.
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post #9 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

I would think that more folks simply have a Macbook or a mini, not a Macbook Pro.

Mac users, sure, but how many Mac users need Parallels with multiple-core VMs? Anecdotally, everyone I know with Parallels or Fusion has a 15 or 17 MBP or Mac Pro because they use it for work. No one I can think of with MBs even uses VM software. They arent hardcore users. Its just a guess. Maybe Fusion kicked Parallels butt on the Mac Pro making that a no go for comparison.
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post #10 of 66
Which is why I asked. Why didn't they publish a full comparison rather than this fluff Ad?

This isn't an article. It's a commercial. I would have been more interested in real numbers.
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post #11 of 66
I'd like to see some hard numbers on benchmarking. For instance, how do Parallels and Fusion compare on compute-intensive tasks?

Parallels doesn't mention being able to host Mac OS X (Server) as a guest VM, so I presume Fusion is still the only one that can do that.
post #12 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

Which is why I asked. Why didn't they publish a full comparison rather than this fluff Ad?

This isn't an article. It's a commercial. I would have been more interested in real numbers.

Dude, it was just launched a few hours ago. There hasnt been time for in-depth comparisons and reviews. This is just a breaking news article. If you want those articles you have to be patient. Or, you can DL both VM apps for your Mac and test it yourself. Post the results if you do.
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post #13 of 66
Are you seriously telling me that not a single reviewer was given a copy of this before hand, and not a single beta tester reviewed this product? If it was breaking news, then why 2 pages of Ads?
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post #14 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

Are you seriously telling me that not a single reviewer was given a copy of this before hand, and not a single beta tester reviewed this product? If it was breaking news, then why 2 pages of Ads?

Im telling you no such thing. If you cant find a review of it, then perhaps not. If AI didnt post a review article, then its likely they didnt review it. Does that mean no one receive an advance copy? Of course not. Its an article telling readers of a new major release of software. The info was taken off their website. At least try be a little objective.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

I'd like to see some hard numbers on benchmarking. For instance, how do Parallels and Fusion compare on compute-intensive tasks?

Parallels doesn't mention being able to host Mac OS X (Server) as a guest VM, so I presume Fusion is still the only one that can do that.

They have supported Mac OS X Server since v4.0
http://download.parallels.com/deskto..._Datasheet.pdf
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post #15 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

I'd like to see some hard numbers on benchmarking. For instance, how do Parallels and Fusion compare on compute-intensive tasks?

If you're doing compute intensive tasks...seriously...just dual boot into windows...c'mon peeps.
post #16 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fishstick_kitty View Post

If you're doing compute intensive tasks...seriously...just dual boot into windows...c'mon peeps.

You want to be able to determine when rebooting is necessary, and when running in VM is acceptable.
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post #17 of 66
Yes! I've been waiting for this for months, finally parallels supports Win7. Not that I dislike using XP for the stuff I need, but in all honesty I was a bit tired of it, after using it for so long. Win7 looks (and works) great, I love it (not as much as OSX of course) but flash would not run full screen on my 64bit 7 (Flash haters can start telling me it's flash's problem, but I blame parallels). Now, I am hoping that this will solve it.
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post #18 of 66
Thankfully, I no longer need to run Windows....My realtor MLS site is now working on Safari whereas before it would only work on IE6.

Having been a Parallels user since its beta days, I would have bought this upgrade and Windows 7. I have bought every Parallels upgrade before and have been very pleased with the software. It never gave me any problems and was a very easy install.

However, I am so happy to no longer have to have anything to do with Windows.

Plus I don't have to pay $80 for Parallels 5 and $175 for Windows 7! I'm totally Apple now! Not to mention all the XP updates, etc.
post #19 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fishstick_kitty View Post

If you're doing compute intensive tasks...seriously...just dual boot into windows...c'mon peeps.

Sorry, I don't do windows. And booting natively into unix/linux/solaris isn't often an option.
post #20 of 66
FYI: if you have a .edu e-mail address, you might qualify for Microsoft's $30 Windows 7 Professional retail upgrade, rather than having to pay the normal retail price of $200. Be sure to tell Microsoft you have special communications needs at your institution. Otherwise you'll only get the Home Premium upgrade for that same $30.
post #21 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Parallels Desktop 5.0 was released Wednesday, with its developer claiming the latest virtualization software runs 64-bit Windows 7 22 percent faster than its nearest competitor ... up to 300 percent faster for virtual machine operations than its predecessor...

That 300 percent quote is key.

The previous Parallels was so bad that even getting matching speeds with VMWare would give it multiple hundreds of percent better performance.

Personally I find Parallels a confusing mish-mash of a UI but it can only be good news that they've finally got their finger out. Also VMWare is hugely overpriced for what it is so maybe we can get some better competition now. A lot of us were just stung recently, having to pay for yet another VMWare upgrade even though many users only just bought the previous version. I haven't been able to make myself buy it (again) yet, so this is perfect timing to entice a few people to switch back to Parallels.
post #22 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

FYI: if you have a .edu e-mail address, you might qualify for Microsoft's $30 Windows 7 Professional retail upgrade, rather than having to pay the normal retail price of $200. Be sure to tell Microsoft you have special communications needs at your institution. Otherwise you'll only get the Home Premium upgrade for that same $30.

If they put you through the hell that the Vista upgrades made you go through, then you're better off just getting a full version of any flavor. MS used to allow you to simply authenticate your old CD's in XP and prior. In Vista they actually forced you to install your previous version so that you could then upgrade it or install your upgrade on a separate partition. In all cases, it required you to have a valid install already.

Hours wasted just to do a fresh install.
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post #23 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

A lot of us were just stung recently, having to pay for yet another VMWare upgrade even though many users only just bought the previous version.

Do you mean your elation over buying Fusion at half price only lasted until the upgrade arrived and you wound up effectively paying full price?
post #24 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

If they put you through the hell that the Vista upgrades made you go through, then you're better off just getting a full version of any flavor.
Hours wasted just to do a fresh install.

Simple instructions for clean installing Windows 7 from the retail upgrade discs are widely available on the web, and the educational discount gets you the retail upgrade. If you want a disc mailed to you, pay $15 more ($45 total). In my opinion, the little effort required to go this route is worth it, to avoid rewarding Microsoft for "Vista SP3".
post #25 of 66
The problem with Desktop is that it does not handle properly connections with external USB devices, which Fusion handles great.
post #26 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Simple instructions for clean installing Windows 7 from the retail upgrade discs are widely available on the web, and the educational discount gets you the retail upgrade. If you want a disc mailed to you, pay $15 more ($45 total). In my opinion, the little effort required to go this route is worth it, to avoid rewarding Microsoft for "Vista SP3".

I'm not saying you couldn't do a clean install. You could simply by installing on a separate partition from your existing install. I'm saying the product forced you to install Vista, or some other qualifying product first before you could then use your 'upgrade' disk.

Is that still the case with W7?
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post #27 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fishstick_kitty View Post

If you're doing compute intensive tasks...seriously...just dual boot into windows...c'mon peeps.

I *think* the point is that we're interested in whether Parallels 5 might serve to reduced the number of times we need to reboot for compute intensive tasks that required Windows...
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post #28 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

Also VMWare is hugely overpriced for what it is so maybe we can get some better competition now. A lot of us were just stung recently, having to pay for yet another VMWare upgrade even though many users only just bought the previous version. I haven't been able to make myself buy it (again) yet, so this is perfect timing to entice a few people to switch back to Parallels.

VMWare Fusion is the same or nearly the same price as Parallels, and has been pretty much since it was introduced...

You don't *have* to upgrade the instant it comes out - as proven by your later upgrade to the previous Fusion. Fusion 2 had been out for awhile, about as long as Parallels 4 had been before this upgrade...
post #29 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Do you mean your elation over buying Fusion at half price only lasted until the upgrade arrived and you wound up effectively paying full price?

No I mean I bought it at full price, got one free point upgrade and now have to buy it at full price again all within a single 12 month period. I'm not the only one upset at that either.

I use it at work, so I don't *have* to buy it at all, but I choose to so as to be on the right side of the moral issue. I know of quite a few people where I work that are ticked off and basically are just going to wait for the "free" copy that work provides for that reason. I'm still trying to decide if running Windows XP twice a year is worth yet another 70/80 bucks to me.
post #30 of 66
Well, I'm glad it's out, but not knowing squat about the Mac virtual programs I really need an in depth comparison review.

Especially one that pits Virtual Box 3.08 (which I understand is free), against both Parallels 5 and vmware Fusion 3.

As were getting a new i7 i mac, I'd like to see support for eight cores (the i7 has 4 real cores and 4 hiperthread "cores").

Also just how easy is each to use.

Who in the Mac world usually has the best reviews, and not just "everything great" fluff with anything that pays for ads?

Fun stuff, anyway.
post #31 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

No I mean I bought it at full price, got one free point upgrade and now have to buy it at full price again all within a single 12 month period.

How is that? The Fusion 2.x to 3.0 upgrade costs $40 ($10 less than the Parallels upgrade by the way), which is half the price of a new license.
post #32 of 66
Just installed 5 on my up to date snow leopard mac pro and all three of my vm's are now BSOD.
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post #33 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by godrifle View Post

Just installed 5 on my up to date snow leopard mac pro and all three of my vm's are now BSOD.

You may want to add your complaints to the official forum threads. They are exactly the same as yours.

Way to go Parallels, and welcome back!
post #34 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarman View Post

You may want to add your complaints to the official forum threads. They are exactly the same as yours.

Way to go Parallels, and welcome back!

Did so, and got a quick response back that fixed it. Simply set your VM to use a single CPU, relaunch, install Parallels Tools, then set back to multiple CPUs if necessary. I can attest (based on very short usage) that it is indeed substantially faster.
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post #35 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The latest version of Parallels Desktop features more than 70 new features, including a new "Crystal view" mode, which can make Windows completely disappear.

Huh??? If it can really do this, I'm SOLD!
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post #36 of 66
Been running it for a few hours now with XP Pro, Vista and 7. THis on a Mac Pro 8 Core with 6 GIGs of RAM and many TBs of disks. I have GT 8800 512 MB Vid card. I am sad to say the graphics claims so far seem very exaggerated in my early experiments. Just for a intensive test I tried Second Life and in all cases it ran but barely. Crystal Mode is fun but in that the mode Second Life told my my graphics card was not able to run it.
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post #37 of 66
Here's the marketing video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJ7cHhzcdNY

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Seven times better graphics performance for games and 3D applications than the previous version with Direct X 9Ex with Shader Model 3 and OpenGL 2.1 support.

7 times seems like the kind of marketing talk where one aspect of 3D support is 7 times faster. I doubt for example that the frame rate goes up by a factor of 7.
post #38 of 66
Forget the speed. If parallels 5 did just two things I'd be ecstatic:

1) Linux (Suse 10.3 in my case) has a nasty habit of locking up if you let the VM sit idle for a while. Incredibly frustrating.

2) The prl_cc (virtual memory monitor) gets into some terrible mode now and then where the system (both Mac and PC) *crawl*. Hopefully, this is part of the "300% speedup" they're talking about (though it would take a 30,000% speed up to make this problem go away).

I use Parallels all the time. But the Linux issue is almost a non-starter for me. I often wait until I get home so I can run my Linux stuff on a separate box to avoid this problem and use Parallels just for quick "in and out of Linux" stuff.
post #39 of 66
I'm slightly put off by Parallel's continuing claim of full Snow Leopard support and finding stuff like:

(9. Known Issues (build 5.0.9220) :

- Inverted sharing (opening Windows files in Mac applications) does not work on Snow
Leopard host computers booted in 64-bit kernel mode.

- Apple Remote does not work exclusively within the virtual machine on Mac OS X 10.6
and 10.6.1 (Snow Leopard). To solve this issue, upgrade your system to Mac OS X
10.6.2 or later.

- Shared folders do not work in 64-bit Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server virtual machines.
In 32-bit Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server virtual machines, shared folders work fine.

--

I can forgive the middle one, VMWare Fusion 3 appears to tell a better story (other than claims of performance). Well, at least it beats VirtualBox (sorry Sun). Yes, someone would want to do 64 bit development on the same Mac they run a virtual machine on. Of course, by this time next year all of this will be ubiquitous (maybe VirtualBox will lag - sorry Sun).
post #40 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJRumpy View Post

Are you seriously telling me that not a single reviewer was given a copy of this before hand, and not a single beta tester reviewed this product? If it was breaking news, then why 2 pages of Ads?

And just how long do you think it would be kept secret, or worse, the competition made apprised ware of it?
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