I have a 24" iMac and have used Boot Camp to install Vista on a 100GB partition of the hard drive. Can I install Parallels Desktop as well so it will be easier to switch between Mac and Windows?

I have 4GB of RAM. Is that enough to run Parallels?


1 Answer 1


Yes, you can install Parallels on your Mac in addition to Boot Camp. Keep in mind that this takes a fair amount of hard drive space, so be sure you've got the space to spare.

As for your memory situation: I run Parallels on a MacBook with 4GB or RAM. It works okay, but it's rather slow. Most things will run acceptably, but performance will be better using Boot Camp.

I should also point out that this setup will be a bit of a hassle. Since the two Windows systems will be independent of each other, any changes you make on one will not copy over to the other system. That means that it could take a fair bit of work to keep both systems synchronized and up to date.

  • 3
    It's possible to boot and run a Boot Camp partition in Parallels, and then any changes you make while running it in Parallels will carry over to a direct Boot Camp boot, and vice versa. download.parallels.com/desktop/v6/docs/en/…
    – Mike Scott
    Commented Nov 20, 2011 at 20:12
  • Thanks guys. So Mike, I only have to follow the "Creating a Boot Camp Virtual Machine" on that page? Not the Import part, or?
    – Claes
    Commented Nov 21, 2011 at 6:51
  • @Claes Yes, that's correct, follow the first part of the instructions. The second part will create a VM that's a copy of your Boot Camp partition, but it will be a separate instance.
    – Mike Scott
    Commented Nov 21, 2011 at 6:55
  • Im not sure how it works, but would it be better to uninstall windows with the bootcamp and only install parallels instead? What would be the differens?
    – Claes
    Commented Nov 21, 2011 at 7:15
  • @MikeScott Definitely worth a separate answer to vote for.
    – yurkennis
    Commented Apr 12, 2014 at 1:06

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