I run Windows 7 using Parallels in host operating system OSX. I have it configured to use 2GM ram and 2 cores on a Retina MacBook Pro with 8GB ram.
I'm curious under what conditions I will experience a performance hit either in terms of CPU usage. Ultimately, I'm interested in whether it is best when Windows 7 in parallels is not in active use, to:
(a) suspend Windows 7 in Parallels (b) shut down Windows 7 in Parallels (c) Quit parallels completely
Using the activity monitor, I noticed the following:
- When idle the Windows 7 virtual machine
prl_vm_appwas using around 2GB of ram and 2 to 2.5% of CPU
- When Windows 7 was suspended or turned off the process disappeared completely
In addition, when Parallels was running with a virtual machine runnning or not, it used around 200 MB and about 0.5% of cpu.
So my initial conclusion is that if you are short on ram, then suspending or shutting down the virtual OS is a good idea. There is also some small background CPU usage if you don't shut it down. However, I'm worried that I'm missing something.
- Does running a virtual machine running in Parallels on OSX use additional CPU or other resources over and beyond the CPU usage indicated in Activity Monitor? For example does it reserve cores?
- Are there any good rules of thumb about whether or when to suspend the virtual machine?