Welcome to the iMore Forums Create Your Account or Ask a Question Answers in 5 minutes - no registration required!
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. Thread AuthorThread Author   #1  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Im planning on getting one of the new 27 inch iMac's early next year and I will be installing Parallels Desktop 8 and Windows 7 probably.

    Now when I got my last PC which came installed initially with Windows Vista 64 bit by the system builder, I found that my USB devices and I think some software and hardware wouldn't work. I can't remember all the details has its 5 years ago almost, but I can remember plugging things in like external hard drives and usually you get a prompt installing driver, but with the 64 bit version it basically could not find the drivers if my memory serves me correctly.

    Now I was wondering which version of Windows (32 or 64 bit) would you recommend to install along with Parallels Desktop 8 on my iMac. I am planning to have a total of 24GB of ram (the iMac would come with 8GB, and I would be installing an additional 16GB), but the last thing I want to do is run into compatibility issues like I did with the 64 bit Windows Vista that I had. Or has things improved from a compatibility point of view with 64 bit?

    I've never had a 64 bit version of Windows in the 10 years of owning a Windows PC (apart from when the system builder supplied my machine in error with 64 bit Vista, which I later removed once the system builder sent me the correct version). So I don't know if 64 bit is something I'm going to need or miss. It's just with the iMac having a 64 bit OS I wondered if it would be beneficial to have a 64 bit version of Windows too.

    The main things I do mostly on my computer are:

    1: Email

    2: Surfing

    3: Photo editing

    4: A bit of video conversion, for if I'm wanting to convert some avi, mp4, mpeg, mkv video to a different format to either then put on my iPad, Playstation 3 or to burn to a DVD disk.

    5: Using iTunes

    Someone did mention to me that video conversion would benefit from a 64 bit version of Windows due to been able to use more than 4GB of ram, but I wondered what you guys think of that?

    So in light of my uses, would there be any benefit to me getting a 64 bit version of Windows.

    Saying that though, it's quite possible (but I don't know yet) that I might be doing some of the above some of the time in the Mac side rather than Windows, but I wouldn't know this until I started using my iMac.

    Also in light of what my uses would be. Has mentioned above, I would have 24GB of ram installed on my iMac (has others on other forums have said that its best to get as much ram as you can afford and this was based on my uses too)

    I know that if I went with a 32 bit version of Windows it wouldn't be able to use more than 4gb of ram. So if I went with the 32 bit version. Would my uses I described and with running the VM (Parallels Desktop 8) would the 4GB limit be too low?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. #2  
    Karenkcoulter's Avatar

    Posts
    5,603 Posts
    Global Posts
    5,608 Global Posts
    iOS Version
    iOS 6.1.3

    Default 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Compatibility issues are much better since Vista. Go with the 64 bit Windows.

    Not trying to say that you shouldn't get that memory or processor, but based on those uses, 24GB of memory is way overkill even if you assigned 8 or more to a Parallels instance. And you can easily run all of those types of programs on the Mac side so you may not even need Parallels.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-03-2012)
  3. Thread AuthorThread Author   #3  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Quote Originally Posted by Karenkcoulter View Post
    Compatibility issues are much better since Vista. Go with the 64 bit Windows.

    Not trying to say that you shouldn't get that memory or processor, but based on those uses, 24GB of memory is way overkill even if you assigned 8 or more to a Parallels instance. And you can easily run all of those types of programs on the Mac side so you may not even need Parallels.
    Thanks for the help Karen its much appreciated.

    Re the ram amount. A few people on other forums have said, if you can get the ram cheap enough, then get as much as you can afford. I thought well the iMac would have 8GB in it as standard and I looked on Crucial's site and I can get 16GB for a good price, so that's why I came out with the 24GB figure. I know very little about the Mac at present and thanks to people like your good self, I am learning more all the time.

    My worry was that with there been a 4GB limit on a 32 bit Windows OS, I thought that I might run into to memory issues with running Parallels/32 bit Windows OS and the Mac OS, so that's what made me think and ask the question about whether to go for 32 or 64 bit Windows.

    I know that I would still need Windows has I've went through the list of programs I use now (on Windows) to see if there is a Mac version. A lot of them there is a Mac version or failing that a similar program that done the same thing. But there was still a small percentage that I could only run on Windows.

    My girlfriend would be the biggest user of Windows, has she is into card making and has a large collection of CD roms which will only run in Windows.
  4. #4  
    Karenkcoulter's Avatar

    Posts
    5,603 Posts
    Global Posts
    5,608 Global Posts
    iOS Version
    iOS 6.1.3

    Default 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    It never hurts to have more ram and it can help future-proof the computer. I just don't want people thinking they need it and getting it even if they can't afford it. If you can, then that's great.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-03-2012)
  5. Thread AuthorThread Author   #5  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Thanks again Karen the helps much appreciated
  6. Thread AuthorThread Author   #6  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    I've just been thinking. If I went with a 64 bit version of Windows (Windows 7) and if I was wanting to install or download and install a piece of software that was only available in a 32 bit version, would I be able to install and use 32 bit software on a 64 bit OS in scenarios like this?
  7. #7  
    Karenkcoulter's Avatar

    Posts
    5,603 Posts
    Global Posts
    5,608 Global Posts
    iOS Version
    iOS 6.1.3

    Default 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Yes. You can run 32 bit software in a 64 bit environment just not vice versa.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-05-2012)
  8. Thread AuthorThread Author   #8  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    From off another forum I've read that some peripherals can sometimes be a problem with 64 bit with regards to drivers, drivers not been available.

    My peripherals would be:

    3 USB external hard drives. All are over 3 years old.

    A USB 3.0 3TB hard drive I would be getting when I got the iMac for my Time Machine backups.

    Printer which is around 6 months old.

    Corsair Flash Voyager USB thumb.

    The USB keyboard that would come with my iMac.

    The bluetooth Apple Magic Mouse that would come with my iMac.

    I'm just wondering if any of these would not work with a 64 bit Windows OS?
  9. #9  
    Karenkcoulter's Avatar

    Posts
    5,603 Posts
    Global Posts
    5,608 Global Posts
    iOS Version
    iOS 6.1.3

    Default 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Of course I can't tell you with 100% certainty, but none of those peripherals sound like they would have any issues with 64 bit Win7. I ran 64 bit Win7 on a PC (not on a Mac thru Parallels) before I switched over to a MacBook Pro about a year and a half ago, and I never had any troubles with driver compatibility with things like printers, USB drives, etc.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-05-2012)
  10. Thread AuthorThread Author   #10  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Quote Originally Posted by Karenkcoulter View Post
    Of course I can't tell you with 100% certainty, but none of those peripherals sound like they would have any issues with 64 bit Win7. I ran 64 bit Win7 on a PC (not on a Mac thru Parallels) before I switched over to a MacBook Pro about a year and a half ago, and I never had any troubles with driver compatibility with things like printers, USB drives, etc.
    Thanks again Karen for the help its much appreciated
  11. #11  
    Roo Zilla's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    228 Posts
    Global Posts
    2,567 Global Posts

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    As you mentioned, nstalling 32 bit Windows would be a waste on a machine with 24GB of memory since it can only use about 3.5GB. That said, I run Win7 on a bootcamp partition on my MBP. I've had no problems with drivers. Unless you're looking for drivers for really old hardware, almost everything has 64 bit versions now. I believe now, most computers sell with 64 bit Windows as the default. As for your particular hardware, the only item I see a problem with is the Magic Mouse. Magic Mouse will work with Windows.... but it sucks. Get a regular Logitech or MS mouse, you'll thank yourself.
    There are some people who for some strange reason, that if they're on a diet, they don't want you to eat a cupcake. If you do eat a cupcake, all they want to do is tell you that it tastes bad.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-05-2012)
  12. Thread AuthorThread Author   #12  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Quote Originally Posted by Roo Zilla View Post
    As you mentioned, nstalling 32 bit Windows would be a waste on a machine with 24GB of memory since it can only use about 3.5GB. That said, I run Win7 on a bootcamp partition on my MBP. I've had no problems with drivers. Unless you're looking for drivers for really old hardware, almost everything has 64 bit versions now. I believe now, most computers sell with 64 bit Windows as the default. As for your particular hardware, the only item I see a problem with is the Magic Mouse. Magic Mouse will work with Windows.... but it sucks. Get a regular Logitech or MS mouse, you'll thank yourself.
    Thanks very much for the help Roo Zilla, it's much appreciated.

    The oldest devices that I would be wanting to use on my iMac would be my external hard drives, which are over 5 years old. Your right, pretty much every PC I've seen lately comes with a 64 bit version of Windows.

    I think I will go with a 64 bit OS has the price I've seen on the site I'm going to get it from is the exact same price for the 32 bit version has it is for the 64 bit version. Most of the time I'll be using the Mac side, but there will no doubt be programs that I can only run in Windows or I might prefer to do it in Windows or something else could arise in the future, so I think the 64 bit OS is going to be the sensible choice from a memory point of view, my girlfriend will be the one who will be using Windows the most with her card making cd roms.

    Re the Apple Magic Mouse in Windows. Providing it works and I can move the mouse arrow, left click and right click on things then I'm not too bothered if it sucks a bit . I do have an old wired Logitech mouse that I've had for probably 8 years, so if I really cannot stand using the Apple Magic Mouse in Windows, I could always use this I suppose.

    Thanks again for the help, it's greatly appreciated.
  13. #13  
    Roo Zilla's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    228 Posts
    Global Posts
    2,567 Global Posts

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Quote Originally Posted by Fatboy71 View Post

    Re the Apple Magic Mouse in Windows. Providing it works and I can move the mouse arrow, left click and right click on things then I'm not too bothered if it sucks a bit . I do have an old wired Logitech mouse that I've had for probably 8 years, so if I really cannot stand using the Apple Magic Mouse in Windows, I could always use this I suppose.
    This is the annoying part with the Magic Mouse..... You can't have 2 fingers on the mouse to do right click. My default habit has always been to have 2 fingers on the mouse, I had to change this habit using Windows with the Magic Mouse. It's obvious why when you think about it, there's no way to know what you want to do because it's one button and using touch to figure out your intention. Also, besides the basic left click, right click, and scroll, the other multitouch features don't really work.

    As for your external drives, I presume they're USB. They'll work fine.
    There are some people who for some strange reason, that if they're on a diet, they don't want you to eat a cupcake. If you do eat a cupcake, all they want to do is tell you that it tastes bad.
    Thanked by:
    Fatboy71 (11-05-2012)
  14. Thread AuthorThread Author   #14  
    Fatboy71's Avatar
    iPhone Intermediate

    Posts
    110 Posts
    iOS Version
    5

    Default Re: 32 or 64 bit Windows with Parallels Desktop question

    Quote Originally Posted by Roo Zilla View Post
    This is the annoying part with the Magic Mouse..... You can't have 2 fingers on the mouse to do right click. My default habit has always been to have 2 fingers on the mouse, I had to change this habit using Windows with the Magic Mouse. It's obvious why when you think about it, there's no way to know what you want to do because it's one button and using touch to figure out your intention. Also, besides the basic left click, right click, and scroll, the other multitouch features don't really work.

    As for your external drives, I presume they're USB. They'll work fine.
    Thanks so much for the help its much appreciated.

    The external hard drives are all USB.

    Providing I can left click, right click and move the mouse arrow, then I'm not too bothered about the other multitouch gestures whilst using Windows. Plus if it gets really annoying I can always plug in my old wiried Logitech mouse whilst using Windows.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-23-2011, 06:55 PM
  2. 16, 32, or 64?
    By simplylaurakb in forum Original iPad
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 04-13-2010, 07:24 PM
  3. Syncing problems with Windows 7 64 bit?
    By Mycopsycho in forum iPhone 4
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 01-12-2010, 07:24 PM
  4. PdaNet Connection Issues between 3GS and 64-bit Vista
    By ultramansfo in forum Jailbreaking, Unlocking, Hacks, Themes & Mods
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 08-14-2009, 08:52 AM
  5. Are you going to jailbreak you iPhone or iPhone 3G S with 3.0?
    By Tramain in forum Jailbreaking, Unlocking, Hacks, Themes & Mods
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 06-19-2009, 08:21 PM

Posting Permissions