Best way for Windows on the Intel iMac

Posted:
in Mac Software edited January 2014
I have an Intel iMac which I have had about a year. It predates having Windows installed. I would like to install windows, primarily to have compatibility with pda's from AT&T and Verizon. Does this work? And could you suggest where I could get the best solution to my questions? The solution I am looking for is the low cost, high value version of Windows for the Intel iMac.Thanks

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 7
    What about Boot Camp, if I don't have Boot Camp installed at the moment? Is that a possible solution?
  • Reply 2 of 7
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Flagstaff434 View Post


    The solution I am looking for is the low cost, high value version of Windows for the Intel iMac.



    Yeah that sounds like Bootcamp.



    The choices you have are:



    Crossover: no Windows, costs money, low compatibility/value

    Parallels/VMWare: needs Windows, costs more than Crossover, better compatibility/value than Crossover:

    Bootcamp: needs Windows, is free, full compatibility so is the best value IMO. You need to dual boot though, which can be a nuisance.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    rich-mysterrich-myster Posts: 771member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    Yeah that sounds like Bootcamp.



    The choices you have are:



    Crossover: no Windows, costs money, low compatibility/value

    Parallels/VMWare: needs Windows, costs more than Crossover, better compatibility/value than Crossover:

    Bootcamp: needs Windows, is free, full compatibility so is the best value IMO. You need to dual boot though, which can be a nuisance.



    marvin do you use crossover to play games? and if you have it, how big is the file?
  • Reply 4 of 7
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rich-Myster View Post


    marvin do you use crossover to play games? and if you have it, how big is the file?



    The Crossover program is about 80MB and a default bottle uses about 30MB. I use Crossover very rarely. I did play Half-Life 2 with it and completed it and parts of Episode 1. Counter Strike Source plays quite smoothly in it. But it's not entirely stable. Sometimes I got 2 hours+ gameplay and at other times, it would crash every few minutes.



    Recently, I got Abe's Exoddus to play in Crossover and although it works, it plays a bit slowly. Sheep Dog 'n Wolf wouldn't work with sound - I got an error about not being able to initialize the DirectSound library or something. Most other games just don't work.



    When Parallels gets to version 3 this Summer, it will have 3D support. I might actually sign up for the beta so I can test what games work.
  • Reply 5 of 7
    lfe2211lfe2211 Posts: 507member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    The Crossover program is about 80MB and a default bottle uses about 30MB. I use Crossover very rarely. I did play Half-Life 2 with it and completed it and parts of Episode 1. Counter Strike Source plays quite smoothly in it. But it's not entirely stable. Sometimes I got 2 hours+ gameplay and at other times, it would crash every few minutes.



    Recently, I got Abe's Exoddus to play in Crossover and although it works, it plays a bit slowly. Sheep Dog 'n Wolf wouldn't work with sound - I got an error about not being able to initialize the DirectSound library or something. Most other games just don't work.



    When Parallels gets to version 3 this Summer, it will have 3D support. I might actually sign up for the beta so I can test what games work.



    Marvin,



    Do you think Crossover has the fundemental capability to increase the number of windows apps that will work using it? Or is it inherently limited and flawed (i don't know how it works)?



    Thanks.
  • Reply 6 of 7
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lfe2211 View Post


    Do you think Crossover has the fundemental capability to increase the number of windows apps that will work using it? Or is it inherently limited and flawed (i don't know how it works)?



    It has potential but its history has shown no significant improvements in compatibility. I've followed it on and off for years - even when the darwine project was considering incorporating an emulator so it would run on PPC and that project still hasn't gotten any further after all this time. Crossover is based on the WINE open source project. The way that it gets round not using Windows is by using an open source equivalent to the APIs inside Windows. So it's like someone else building their own version of Windows but only the bits that most apps need to run. This way it can never really reach full compatibility as it will always lag behind the developments made inside the proprietary and closed source Windows system. Plus those parts that work may never work completely as they were intended - one example is you still get the odd shading errors in DirectX 7.



    The likes of Parallels and Bootcamp don't have to worry because all they have to do is make sure that the Windows system itself can run and you get all that compatibility free. Device interaction is the hardest to deal with which is why USB support and 3D support are the last to come. Parallels already has pretty good USB support now and like I say, 3D support is being beta tested. They even have a screenshot of Doom 3. Now if they get that to run, that's pretty impressive even if it is as they advertised.



    Crossover only has 3D support because someone reverse engineered the DirectX API but they've only done DirectX 7 properly, DirectX 8 is not bad but not as stable and I don't think they have DirectX 9. They might get it eventually but who's to say when and DirectX 10 is coming and they'll fall behind again.



    Crossover has no USB support nor does it even support the encryption you get on CDs like games. So for example, it won't allow you to register Half-Life 2 on Steam because it doesn't read the discs properly. Again this is being worked on but Parallels managed this ages ago - I actually used Parallels to register Half-Life 2 and then played it in Crossover.



    I liked the idea of Crossover because it has a few advantages over the others. The fact that you don't need Windows is not that significant besides cost because I find it takes just as long to boot into Windows as it does for Crossover to launch an application, often Crossover just hangs for ages and sometimes ends up doing nothing. But it shares the Mac drive so you only ever use as much as your apps take up (plus the 100MB or so for the app) and deleting stuff frees the space. This also means you don't need to use shared folders.



    However, if you use Parallels from a Bootcamp partition, you get round these issues to an extent. Although you have a static partition, I found it easier to deal with than a disk image.



    I know I've mainly been talking in the context of 3D support but general application support is poor in Crossover. I tried a lot of programs and although a handful would load, they don't all work properly and you know that just when you need a certain app to work that it just won't so it's not a route I recommend. Someone asked me last week that they needed to use Internet Explorer so I figured Crossover would be ideal. Crossover said it was a supported app and even downloads it for you (supposedly).



    Well, I tried and the download kept failing. So I got it manually in Safari and installed it. Then just before it finishes installing, it gives an error. Every time I tried it just wouldn't work. Firefox works but I needed to use IE. I've tried Office 2003 and it didn't work either although that's reported to be a supported app too.
  • Reply 7 of 7
    lfe2211lfe2211 Posts: 507member
    Thanks much Marvin for a very articulate well informed response to my question.
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