Installing Parallels Desktop for Mac 8 is a Typical Pain

Posted on this Sunday, September 9, 2012 18:01 by caw
Filed Under OS X, Software, Virtualization | Leave a Comment

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Our fine friends at Parallels have released a new version of their virtualization software, Parallels Desktop for Mac 8. In the past, Parallels has run about 50/50 when installing the new release without issues; call it a coin flip. This is one of the losers. I suppose to be fair, others have been able to install it just fine and are raving about how wonderful it is. The rub though is if it doesn’t install in your environment, on your machine, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. And there have been complaints with more than one person asking for a refund. I will get to the installation issues in a moment but first…

I was looking at the notes on a new release of another software package I use: Logos. Logos is a software suite designed for Bible study. They not only have different version of the Bible, they have a thousands of reference books, maps, lexicons, etc. that you can purchase and download. Everything is linked and fully searchable. In a work, it’s the Microsoft Office of biblical study. (Only Logos works!) They usually have a bug fix/feature upgrade on Fridays, most Fridays in fact. (Their approach is similar to Adobe’s Creative Cloud: get the fixes/new features out to users as soon as they are ready. Ok, there are issues with this analogy but it kind of hangs together.) This Friday they announced that support for Logos 4 on Windows XP and OS X Leopard would ending in late October. Their reasoning is, in part, that it taks significant funding and time to develop features in their program that are backward compatible that far. The demographics of their user base indicate a small percentage are running XP/Leopard and it’s time to cut the strings. There has been protest because the community that uses Logos (pastors, students, etc) generally don’t have an abundance of money sitting around to buy a new computer.

I bring this up because it points to a larger question: why do people upgrade hardware and/or software? After all, you have all your data on the current machine, all your programs, you know how to use what you have. I know people who have machines and software that are 5+ years old. Their philosophy is if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Maybe the better question might be why don’t people upgrade?

If you think about it, upgrading your computer can be a costly adventure. If you have hardware/software that is 5-7 years old, upgrading won’t be as inexpensive as buy a new "this." In order to use "this" you’re going to have to upgrade "that" and the "other" and leads to more money. Maybe you can upgrade the memory or disk in the computer and be ok; maybe you have to upgrade the entire machine. Are all the peripherals going to work with the new machine or do you replace those as well? What about software? If you upgrade the OS, will it run on the hardware you have or does it need something newer? Are the applications you have compatible with the new machine and OS, or do you have to purchase upgrades, assuming of course the software is still in production. By way of some examples…

Now back to Parallels 8. Open the DMG for it and you see this…

Double click the install, wait a few moments, see screens flash by and I see this…

I tried downloading the software again. In hindsight, this wasn’t necessary. If the DMG was corrupted, the integrity checks would have caught it. I tried Reopen… and ended up in the same spot and the same with Report… I tried Ignore and that didn’t help (rarely does). I tried deleting PD7 -but- I didn’t empty the trash. I use Parallels to connect to my desktop at work and, since I plan to work from home tomorrow, I am loathe to go that far. Part of that comes from the fact that on one of the Parallels upgrades I had some VMs that got trashed in the process. I have backups for them but around version 4 or version 5 they didn’t have a nice way to get VMs back into your "configuration." I ended up re-installing them from scratch. Not a huge deal because I only depend on one of them (an XP instance to run IE; my employer uses ActiveX plug-ins to check your PC configuration for up-to-date virus signatures, etc., and to wipe the browser cache when you log out). I don’t depend on them to run applications.

For the moment, I’m rather stuck. Maybe tomorrow after work I can contact Parallels and see what they have to say.

Did I mention I downloaded the VMWare Fusion 5 trial? You listening, Parallels?

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