7 Replies Latest reply: Aug 12, 2008 5:03 PM by Kappy
myiphone10 Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
Hello, I have a very expensive windows program that I really need to use. They don't make it for macs. What is the cheapest way I can run a windows program on my mac?
Thanks.

Macbook, iPhone, iPod, iPod Nano, Shuffle, Mac OS X (10.5.4)
  • UnlivedPhalanx Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)
    There are two answers to this, cheapest or best?

    Cheapest would be to use Bootcamp and install it on a seperate partition on your drive, you would have to reboot it every time you wanted to use it.

    Best - Use a program like VMware: http://store.apple.com/us/product/TP185LL/A?fnode=home/shop_mac/software/utiliti es&mco=MTM3MDIzOA

    You can run Windows literally inside of a Window right along-side your favorite Mac apps and even share a clip-board between the two.

    Bottom Line: It depends on how intense the program is since you have to divide your RAM when you launch Windows in VMware, however getting more RAM is probably a better solution than Bootcamp for something you need for productivity.

    PS - Out of curiosity, what program is it?
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (244,725 points)
    Windows on Intel Macs

    There are presently several alternatives for running Windows on Intel Macs.

    1. Install the Apple Boot Camp software. Purchase Windows XP w/Service Pak 2 or Vista. Follow instructions in the Boot Camp documentation on installation of Boot Camp, creating Driver CD, and installing Windows. Boot Camp enables you to boot the computer into OS X or Windows.

    2. Parallels Desktop for Mac and Windows XP, Vista Business, or Vista Ultimate. Parallels is software virtualization that enables running Windows concurrently with OS X.

    3. VM Fusionand Windows XP, Vista Business, or Vista Ultimate. VM Fusion is software virtualization that enables running Windows concurrently with OS X.

    4. CrossOver which enables running many Windows applications without having to install Windows. The Windows applications can run concurrently with OS X.

    5. VirtualBox is a new Open Source freeware virtual machine such as VM Fusion and Parallels that was developed by Solaris. It is not yet fully developed for the Mac - some features are not yet implemented - but it does work otherwise.

    6. Last is Q. Q is a freeware emulator that is compatible with Intel Macs. It is much slower than the virtualization software, Parallels and VM Fusion.

    Note that Parallels and VM Fusion can also run other operating systems such as Linux, Unix, OS/2, Solaris, etc. There are performance differences between dual-boot systems and virtualization. The latter tend to be a little slower (not much) and do not provide the video performance of the dual-boot system.

    See MacTech.com's Virtualization Benchmarking for comparisons of Boot Camp, Parallels, and VM Fusion.

    Boot Camp is only available with Leopard. The Boot Camp Beta that was used with Tiger has expired and is no longer available for use. So contrary to the other poster's comment, Boot Camp isn't truly "free." You must purchase Leopard to get it.
  • John in Oz Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi there,

    This is most timely.

    I currently run a PC/Laptop using a MS Access database for my business. I've got years of data and really don't want to go away from that application.

    Sorry guys but I don't understand much of the techo stuff you have posted above.

    1. Bottom line for me is, can I purchase Mac Book and run my Access Database on it.

    2. If so can I continue to develop the Access program or do I have to go back to the old Laptop to update and then re-install??

    John
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (244,725 points)
    1. Bottom line for me is, can I purchase Mac Book and run my Access Database on it.

    Yes, if you run Windows on the Mac. Access is not available as a Mac application, so the only way to run Access on the Mac is to run Windows. Now, that said there is an Open Source project called Open Office 3. It is available as a beta program. It does implement a database application, but I'm not sure how Access compatible it is since I don't use Access and cannot test it. It does run natively on the Mac and is roughly the equivalent of MS Office for Windows except that it does not include Outlook Exchange.


    2. If so can I continue to develop the Access program or do I have to go back to the old Laptop to update and then re-install??

    See previous answer.
  • John in Oz Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Great, thanks already.

    Q3. How do I run Windows on a mac? Does it involve some kind of "frontal lobotomy"? (for the Mac, not me)
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (244,725 points)
    Did you not read my earlier post that provides all the options for running Windows on a Mac?
  • John in Oz Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Oops, Yes. Sorry, got ahead of myself. Thanks for the answer.

    John