Preview: Parallels Desktop for Mac vs. VMware Fusion
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Preview: Parallels Desktop for Mac vs. VMware Fusion

NOTE: The full article is now available here.

Preview: Parallels Desktop for Mac vs. VMware Fusion

How does VMware Fusion 3.1 and Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac compare?

PREVIEW

For the past several weeks, MacTech has been working on its latest benchmarks for virtualization. Rather than look at the ‘version-dot-oh’ release, we typically wait for versions to settle down a bit so that we can give our readers results that are relevant for a longer period.

We’ll shortly be releasing comprehensive results on our tests of VMware Fusion 3.1 vs. Parallels Desktop 6 and our January issue of MacTech Magazine in print will be talking more about virtualization. <blatant marketing>If you want to get that issue delivered to your door, now is the time to subscribe. See http://macte.ch/subscribe now. Virtualization is also one of the key topics at MacTech Boot Camp in San Francisco on January 26th, 2011</blatant marketing>

This benchmark suite, as it has been in the past, is made up of several thousand tests, many of which are done with a stopwatch to give you real world results. It gives you, the reader, an even-handed assessment as to performance for the areas that we cover (virtual machine actions, file I/O, CPU footprint, IE and Microsoft Office, and of course, 3D graphics and games).

To be clear, this article is not a product review; it's a benchmarking analysis. You should use it as part of your decision combined with other factors such as product features, interface preferences, and support to make your product choice.

We’re double-checking things and putting the final touches on this large scale analysis now. In the mean time, in advance of the holidays, we thought we’d offer you up a preview of how the tests went.

BIG PICTURE PREVIEW

We won't keep you in suspense. When we look at the “big picture” of all the testing, Parallels is the clear winner. If you count up the general tests (including one 3D graphics score), Parallels won 61% of the tests by 10% or more, and was also a bit faster on an additional 23% more of the tests. In other words, Parallels Desktop 6 beat VMware Fusion 3.1 in 84% of the general tests we ran.


Test Tally: General Virtualization Tests

If you focus exclusively on 3D graphics, as measured by 3DMark06 version 1.2, Parallels won by an even larger margin. Specifically, Parallels won 73% of the tests by at least 10%, and was also a bit faster on an additional 19% more of the tests. In other words, Parallels Desktop 6 beat VMware Fusion 3.1 in 92% of the 3D graphics tests we ran.

When VMware Fusion was faster in 3D graphics, it was typically on the HDR/SM3.0 Score and the Batch Size tests (e.g., triangles). But, as you can see from the test tally, Parallels Desktop was overwhelmingly faster in graphics, and in working with real games, it was easy to see confirmation of the 3DMark06 scores.


Test Tally: 3D Graphics Tests

There are a handful of places that VMware Fusion is consistently faster than Parallels Desktop. In Microsoft Word 2010, VMware launched (adam or first launch after boot) faster, and was faster on large, global search and replaces. It was also consistently faster running under Windows 7 doing file compression, and loading SSL pages.

Overall, VMware Fusion won 6% of the tests by at least 10%, and was also a bit faster on an additional 4% more of the general tests. For the 3D tests, VMware Fusion won 3% of the tests by at least 10%, and was also a bit faster on an additional 3% more for a total of 6%.

VERSION COMPARISONS

The versions that we tested for these benchmarks were VMware Fusion 3.1.1 and Parallels Desktop 6.0.11828.615184.

Since the last time we did comprehensive virtualization benchmarks, Parallels had a major upgrade from version 5 to version 6. With a major upgrade, we expected to see some nice benefits. We only tested a few things to get a sense, but we saw:

  • On XP, 7% faster on compression and 37% faster graphics (3DMark06 score)
  • On Windows 7, Full Windows boot more than twice as fast, and graphics almost twice as fast


Since the last comprehensive benchmarks, VMware had a minor bump from 3.0 to 3.1. We were curious how these versions differed on the current hardware and OS for the same types of tests, and saw these benefits:

  • On XP, 8% faster on compression. 3DMark06 tests crashed virtual machine (3.1.2 fixed this, but was slower on graphics).
  • On Windows 7, Full Windows boot almost twice as fast, and 3DMark06 tests crashed virtual machine (3.1.2 fixed this, but was slower on graphics).

MORE TO COME

If you want upgrade or other information, see VMware Fusion 3.1 and Parallels Desktop 6 for details on these products.

To be clear, this article is not a product review; it's a benchmarking analysis. You should use it as part of your decision combined with other factors such as product features, interface preferences, and support to make your product choice.

The full version of the study will allow you to have better insight into the areas most important to you whether it’s virtual machine operations, file IO, application speed, CPU footprint, specific types graphics performance, and more. This will give you the best performance information for your specific situation -- as each user's needs are different.

Furthermore, the full article will give you insights to Windows 7 vs. XP performance -- so you can decide whether to upgrade there as well. (Information on upgrading to Windows 7 is at the Microsoft Store.)

Look for the complete study when it comes available, and virtualization coverage in the January 2011 issue of MacTech Magazine. And, for discussion at MacTech Boot Camp on January 26th, 2011 in San Francisco.

Read the FULL article which details results of more than 4,000 benchmark tests of Parallels Desktop 6 vs. VMware Fusion 3.1 by clicking here. (link)

 
AAPL
$524.94
Apple Inc.
+5.93
MSFT
$40.01
Microsoft Corpora
-0.39
GOOG
$536.10
Google Inc.
-20.44

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Mac DVDRipper Pro 4.1.7 - Copy, backup,...
Mac DVDRipper Pro is the DVD backup solution that lets you protect your DVDs from scratches, save your batteries by reading your movies from your hard disk, manage your collection with just a few... Read more
PDFpenPro 6.2 - Advanced PDF toolkit for...
PDFpenPro allows users to edit PDF's easily. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Create... Read more
PDFpen 6.2 - Edit and annotate PDFs with...
PDFpen allows users to easily edit PDF's. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Features... Read more
Monolingual 1.5.9 - Remove unwanted OS X...
Monolingual is a program for removing unnecesary language resources from OS X, in order to reclaim several hundred megabytes of disk space. It requires a 64-bit capable Intel-based Mac and at least... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty 1.1.1.180...
Download the patch by launching the Starcraft II game and downloading it through the Battle.net connection within the app. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty is a strategy game played in real-time. You... Read more
Sibelius 7.5.0 - Music notation solution...
Sibelius is the world's best-selling music notation software for Mac. It is as intuitive to use as a pen, yet so powerful that it does most things in less than the blink of an eye. The demo includes... Read more
Typinator 5.9 - Speedy and reliable text...
Typinator turbo-charges your typing productivity. Type a little. Typinator does the rest. We've all faced projects that require repetitive typing tasks. With Typinator, you can store commonly used... Read more
MYStuff Pro 2.0.16 - Create inventories...
MYStuff Pro is the most flexible way to create detail-rich inventories for your home or small business. Add items to MYStuff by dragging and dropping existing information, uploading new images, or... Read more
TurboTax 2013.r17.002 - Manage your 2013...
TurboTax guides you through your tax return step by step, does all the calculations, and checks your return for errors and overlooked deductions. It lets you file your return electronically to get... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

David. Review
David. Review By Cata Modorcea on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: MINIMALISTIC IN A DIFFERENT WAYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad David is a minimalistic game wrapped inside of a soothing atmosphere in which the hero... | Read more »
Eyefi Unveils New Eyefi Cloud Service Th...
Eyefi Unveils New Eyefi Cloud Service That Allows Users to Share Media Across Personal Devices Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair...
Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair Review By Jennifer Allen on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: STEADY ADVENTURINGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Treading a safe path, Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair is a... | Read more »
Yahoo Updates Flickr App with Advanced E...
Yahoo Updates Flickr App with Advanced Editing Features and More Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
My Incredible Body - A Kid's App to...
My Incredible Body - A Kid's App to Learn about the Human Body 1.1.00 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.1.00 (iTunes) Description: Wouldn’t it be cool to look inside yourself and see what was going on... | Read more »
Trials Frontier Review
Trials Frontier Review By Carter Dotson on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: A ROUGH LANDINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Trials Frontier finally brings the famed stunt racing franchise to mobile, but how much does its... | Read more »
Evernote Business Notebook by Moleskin I...
Evernote Business Notebook by Moleskin Introduced – Support Available in Evernote for iOS Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Sparkle Unleashed Review
Sparkle Unleashed Review By Jennifer Allen on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: CLASSY MARBLE FLINGINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad It’s a concept we’ve seen before, but Sparkle Unleashed is a solidly enjoyable orb... | Read more »
Tilt to Live 2: Redonkulus Receives its...
Tilt to Live 2: Redonkulus Receives its First Update – Gets New Brimstone Pinball DLC Posted by Rob Rich on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Union Review
Union Review By Jennifer Allen on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: LAYERED RESULTSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Create some stylish imagery with this layers focused photography app.   | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP this we...
Best Buy has iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP for a limited time. Choose free home shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Prices are valid for online orders only, in-store... Read more
iPad Airs on sale this weekend for up to $100...
Best Buy has WiFi iPad Airs on sale for $50 off MSRP and WiFi + Cellular iPad Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store for a limited time, with prices now starting at $449. Choose free... Read more
Apple restocks refurbished Mac minis starting...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished Mac minis for up to $150 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 2.5GHz Mac... Read more
Hyundai Brings Apple CarPlay To The 2015 Sona...
Hyundai Motor America has announced it will bring Apple CarPlay functionality to the 2015 Sonata. CarPlay is pitched as a smarter, safer and easier way to use iPhone in the car and gives iPhone users... Read more
Updated iPads Coming Sooner Than We Had Thoug...
MacRumors, cites KGI securities analyst Ming Chi Kuo, well-respected as an Apple product prognisticator, saying that Apple will introduce an upgraded iPad Air and iPad mini in 2014/Q3, meaning the... Read more
Toshiba Unveils New High And Low End Laptop M...
Toshiba has announced new laptop models covering both the high-end and low-end of the notebook computer spectrum. Toshiba 4K Ultra HD Laptop Toshiba’s new Satellite P55t features one of the world’s... Read more
Save up to $270 with Apple refurbished 13-inc...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished October 2013 13″ Retina MacBook Pros available starting at $1099, with models up to $270 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping... Read more
Apple now offering refurbished iPad mini with...
The Apple Store has Certified Refurbished 2nd generation iPad minis with Retina Displays now available starting at $339. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free.... Read more
Microsoft Blinks – Drops Microsoft Office 365...
Microsoft has dropped the annual subscription fee for Microsoft Office 365 Personal – which is needed in order to create and edit documents in Microsoft Office for iPad. However, Apple’s iOS and OS X... Read more
New AVG Vault Apps for iOS and Android Help K...
AVG Technologies N.V. an online security company for 177 million active users, has announced the launch of its latest mobile application, AVG Vault. The free app introduces an innovative user... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Retail - Manager - Holyoke - Apple I...
Job Summary Keeping an Apple Store thriving requires a diverse set of leadership skills, and as a Manager, you’re a master of them all. In the store’s fast-paced, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Manager - Apple (United Sta...
Job SummaryKeeping an Apple Store thriving requires a diverse set of leadership skills, and as a Manager, you're a master of them all. In the store's fast-paced, dynamic Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Retail - Market Leader - Cincinnati...
…challenges of developing individuals, building teams, and affecting growth across Apple Stores. You demonstrate successful leadership ability - focusing on excellence Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.