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Shaun Prescott’ writes on the things that mat­ter in tech

APC Australia - - Contents - JR Book­wal­ter

“Par­al­lels Desk­top tack­les the VM stor­age dilemma with au­to­matic disk mon­i­tor­ing. ”

The abil­ity to run Win­dows, Linux, and other op­er­at­ing sys­tems from a Mac with vir­tu­al­i­sa­tion soft­ware is pretty cool. And it’s an es­sen­tial pro­duc­tiv­ity boost if you jug­gle mul­ti­ple plat­forms for col­lege or work. But vir­tual ma­chines (VMs) are known to eat up pre­cious re­sources like stor­age; a ba­sic Win­dows in­stal­la­tion re­quires at least 15GB of space, with our own Win­dows 10 vir­tual ma­chine weigh­ing in at up­wards of 50GB.

Par­al­lels Desk­top 14 for Mac tack­les this stor­age dilemma in sev­eral ways, sav­ing as much as 20GB by pro­vid­ing au­to­matic disk mon­i­tor­ing with on­go­ing ad­vice to keep things run­ning smoothly.

Don’t ex­pect mas­sive de­creases from a sin­gle vir­tual ma­chine, though – in­stead, sav­ings add up by chip­ping away at the size of each in­stalled vir­tual ma­chine. With a to­tal of nine VMs on our re­view iMac, we didn’t come close to sav­ing 20GB, but re­claimed at least a few gi­ga­bytes.

While pre­vi­ous ver­sions were ca­pa­ble of man­u­ally re­claim­ing disk space, the op­tion was buried in the set­tings for each in­di­vid­ual vir­tual ma­chine. This process is now stream­lined by Free Up Disk Space in the File menu, which dis­plays all avail­able vir­tual ma­chines in one place and al­lows you to quickly man­age snap­shots (now 15% smaller), re­sume and shut down, re­claim disk space, or archive those that are used in­fre­quently for greater stor­age re­duc­tion.

SLIM­MER AND FASTER

The ap­pli­ca­tion it­self is also slim­mer by about 150MB (mostly thanks to the com­pre­hen­sive sup­port doc­u­men­ta­tion mov­ing on­line), and no­tice­ably faster at start­ing up – Par­al­lels claims as much as 80%, and we can con­firm this is a very real im­prove­ment you’ll ben­e­fit from ev­ery time you use it.

Boot­ing Win­dows and launch­ing apps in­stalled in those vir­tual ma­chines is also faster by up to 35%, and there’s a slick op­tion to au­to­mat­i­cally op­ti­mise video mem­ory us­age. A re­source mon­i­tor panel can be sum­moned from the Win­dow menu to keep tabs on vir­tual ma­chine pro­ces­sor and mem­ory us­age in real time.

Fi­nally, now that macOS Mo­jave is avail­able, Par­al­lels of­fers full sup­port for Ap­ple’s lat­est, in­clud­ing Dark Mode and run­ning the sys­tem inside a vir­tual ma­chine.

You could po­ten­tially save up to 20GB by us­ing the new Free Up Disk Space op­tion in the File menu.

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