I am planning on buying a Macbook Pro and Parallels Desktop 10, but I also love PC video games and I want to know if anyone knows how/if Steam games can run easily through Parallels Desktop. Also if Steam games can run, how well does it run? Do you think I would be better off getting Boot Camp?

  • Sorry to bump an old thread, I have a new Macbook Pro, and run Parallel 12, and have installed Windows 10 and Ubuntu 16.04LTS in their own virtual machines. I have also installed Office 2013, SQL Server 2016 and VS 2015 in Windows 10, and all works great. I just tried to install Steam on Ubuntu running in it's VM. All went well, until I kicked it off to run, and I got a load of Xerrors. It's clear that running Steam on Ubuntu when in a Parallels VM isn't going to happen. I'll try to run Steam in Windows VM next. If anyone has been successful in doing so please let me know. Also, if anyone can – jpquinn Aug 30 '16 at 1:51

Parallels is great if you don't need full speed; it's not great for gaming, but it's OK at a push.

I'd go with Boot Camp for gaming, Parallels for less-intensive work.

You can use your Boot Camp drive in Parallels too, for times you just need quick access to Windows, without needing the full-speed setup. The only proviso is that you must shut it down in Parallels each time, rather than Suspend it, or it messes up the boot partition.
You can set your prefs in Parallels to do this automatically, so you don't forget.

From comments…
Windows needs to be purchased separately, for either solution, Boot Camp or Parallels.
This excerpt from Parallels FAQ

Pre-Sales Questions - I want to buy Parallels and need to know…

  • Does Windows come pre-installed with Parallels Desktop for Mac?

    • Windows is not included with your purchase of Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac. Windows can be purchased directly from Microsoft or many retail stores. For Windows 8 or 8.1, you can use either the Full Product purchased at retail, or you can purchase the Windows 8 or 8.1 OEM System Builder version (lower price) which has some limitations. Please visit KB9003 for additional information.
  • If I get Boot Camp will I need to purchase Windows 8 or does Boot Camp include Windows 8? – ZomoXYZ Feb 2 '15 at 16:04
  • 1
    Whichever way you do it, you need to purchase your Windows license separately. Both enable Win etc to be installed, they don't cover the license for you. – Tetsujin Feb 2 '15 at 16:18
  • oh, I was under the impression that Parallels covered the license – ZomoXYZ Feb 2 '15 at 16:20
  • 'fraid not - I added more info on that to the answer. I hear Win 10 may be free - depends how long you can hang on... – Tetsujin Feb 2 '15 at 16:32

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