Index syndication
comment syndication

Windows 10 UEFI USB Boot in VMWare Fusion 7

You’ve downloaded your purchased Windows 10 ISO from Microsoft, and you’ve managed to create a bootable UEFI USB stick.
Now you’ve decided to run Windows 10 in VMWare Fusion Pro on your Mac. Yet the USB stick can NOT be booted from.
There is a solution. VMWare fusion has some (unsupported) EFI options you can enable to effect a USB boot.
First you’ll want to create a Windows 10 VM in VMWare Fusion.
Create a new VM, and select the more options icon:
Setup-1
Select Create a custom virtual machine and select Continue:
Setup-2
Select Windows 10 as the operating system, and select Continue – x64 is selected here as I’m 64 bit all the way:
Setup-3
Leave the virtual disk options and select Continue:
Setup-4
On the Summary Screen, you can use the Customize Settings button to change your VM defaults. I updated my RAM to 8GB, my CPU Cores to 2, and changed the VM Disk size to 100GB (60GB may be a bit small for most power users).
Setup-Summary
Before you start the VM; you’ll need to modify the vmx file directly.

  1. In the Virtual Machine Library, right click on the Windows 10 VM and select Show in Finder.
  2. Right click on the vmwarevm container and select Show Package Contents
  3. Edit the *.vmx file using your favourite text editor
  4. Append the following options to the configuration to enabled EFI booting:

firmware = "efi"
efi.legacyBoot.enabled = "true"

Show-VMX
Edit-vmx
The Legacy boot option allows VMWare to see the USB device in some cases; and was required for me.
Boot your new VM:
Start-VMWare
You’ll find that the new EFI boot loaders are picked up, but not yet the USB. Since you couldn’t attach a USB before starting, you can do it now. Open the VM preferences and attach the USB containing the EFI Boot files:
Connect-EFI-USB
VMWare will now boot into the Windows 10 setup.
Restart-VMWare-Windows10
Thanks to a post by A Virtual Den for pointing me in the right direction for the VMX LegacyBoot option!

Apple iTMS TV show quality review

This is an old review I wrote and never posted, but it’s still relevant today. My conclusion is up to date for 2011.

Having just purchased and watched seasons 1 and 2 of The Tudors from iTunes (I missed them on Showtime), I was searching the net for other peoples thoughts on the quality of these TV shows. One review I came across was from AllForces.com, concering iTunes quality vs Bit Torrent. Since their blog post in 2005, Apple seems to have upped the standard of their TV show offerings.

I’m be the first to admit that I’m an Apple fan, with my Mac laptop the primary downloader of these TV Shows, syncing to my iPhone and also viewing the shows via front row on my Mac Mini. It’s the viewing of these on the Mac Mini I will review.

Read the rest of this entry »

Airport Extreme

What a difference a new router makes.

Old Airport ExtremeI’ve been using the old Apple Airport extreme, 2nd generation, for about 8 years now. It’s been rock solid, and provided wireless access almost 24×7 for the whole 8 years.

Lately, things have been getting flakey. Trying to control my Mac Mini Boxee on the TV was laggy – and remoting to other desktops flaky. So today, I purchased an upgrade.

I was looking at the Cisco/Linksys offerings as I use a few at work, but when using a NAS device I would have had to reformat my existing HFS+ drives. I compared the Linksys E3000 model with the new Airport Extreme, and for $50 more, it seemed the Airport just fitted right in to my mac network. Well of course it would, Apples for Apples. The last thing to convince me was the 4.5 out of 5 star rating for the Airport extreme on the Apple Store – and a review from SmallNetBuilder.

New Airport Extreme
Here I am – first blog post on the new wireless network. Simultaneous dual band speeeeeed.

It was simple to setup. Plugin, configure with the Apple Airport Utility (the CD has both Mac and PC versions included) and then I plugged in my Hard Drive. It gets shared, and used across all the Macs.

Check out the speed differences, before and after:

BeforeAfter


Old Airport photo courtesy me-pawel
New Airport photo courtesy of Bj

MacBook vs. MacBookPro

Does CPU speed matter for gaming on a Mac Laptop?

The difference between, for example, 2.4 Ghz and 2.6 Ghz will be negligible when running the games. What will contribute to the smoothness and quality of the games the Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) and to an extent bus speed, CPU cache and RAM.

When it comes to RAM, the more the merrier – to avoid the Hard Drive being used to swap applications when your memory is full. Get as much RAM as you can afford.

Consider the current models of a MacBook vs. a MacBookPro – they both have similar specifications on the CPUS.

  • The 13″ MacBook has 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 3MB on-chip shared L2 cache
  • The 13″ MacBookPro has a 2.4GHz or 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 3MB on-chip shared L2 cache
  • The 15″ MacBookPros have 2.4GHz, 2.53GHz or 2.66GHz Intel Core i5/i7 processors with 3MB and 4MB shared L3 cache respectively.

The i5 and i7 CPUs are the next in an architectural line of mobile CPUs from Intel, so it’s not the “Ghz” that’s going to improve your gaming – it’s having the later generation CPUs. In the CPU arena, the 13″ Pro/Non-Pro models are the same – but the 15″ Pro models are clearly in front.

Now consider the Graphics Processor, the real workhorse in modern 3D gaming. The current models as shown:

  • The 13″ MacBook has NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics processor with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM ***shared with main memory***
  • The 13″ MacBookPro has NVIDIA GeForce 320M with 256MB DDR3 SDRAM ***shared with main memory***
  • The 15″ MacBookPro has TWO GPU devices: Intel HD Graphics with 256MB DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory, and NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M graphics processor with 256MB GDDR3 memory and automatic graphics switching

In all cases, there is a GPU sharing Main Memory. These are much faster than the Graphics of yesteryear, but sharing the main memory means using some of your 2GB or 4GB of RAM. Games will play and look acceptable, but the framerate wont be the best you can get.

Where the laptop will shine, is with the dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GT chips. They have dedicated DDR3 memory allocated to them, designed to do one thing only – fast 3D.

My recommendation:
If you are on a budget – a MacBook or a 13″ MacBookPro will have to do.
However if you can afford it, and want to game – a 15″ MacBookPro with a dedicated GPU will play your games as smooth as any current generation laptop can. You can’t go wrong with the larger screen either.

Next entries »