Cons None as of yet
Summary After 30+ years of Microsoft systems (my 1st PC was an Amstrad 1512 in 1985), I purchased my 1st Mac for my 56th birthday. I installed Parallels on it and enjoyed being able to use all my software! Then, I purchased an Macbook Air for traveling this past Christmas. Why? Because with Parallels installed, I can run my work software (Windows) and my personal software (Windows for my games and Mac for my photos). I get 2 computers on 1. I find the versatility very appealing and I can take advantage of any type of new software! I love trying demos on both operating systems.
"It Just Works"on by tjablon
Pros Allows me to have three OSs running simultaneously, incl. server and multiple clients.
Cons Don't have any
Summary It allows me to run Windows and a Linux server along with the OS X on my laptop at the same time. That way, I can develop and test web software running on the Linux server, while checking the results using various browsers in all three environments, and to do it without constant uploads to some remote server. And, it does it all without any hassles or wasting my time on fixing or adjusting the tool itself. It Just Works.
Pros A professional business package. Easy to install and upgrade. Low Price. Makes virtual machines a no-brainer.
Cons Parallels works flawlessly. Just the normal learning curve for switching to a virtual machine.
Summary When Mac went with an intel chip I saw my chance to move into virtual machines. When I want to upgrade my hardware, I buy a new computer, install parallels, then move my Windows virtual machine over to the new hardware. Since my windows moves via the virtual machine I do not have to reinstall software. I get a new faster machine and my familiar old Windows setup. Connects to my network easily. I have 5 machines running parallels with no problems for the last 5 years. Love it!
Pros Easy, simple, no brainer!
Cons None so far...
Summary A simple and easy way to run Windows on Mac - period! Did you know that Parallels with Windows will backup to Time Machine? I was flabbergasted when I replaced my hard drive, that all my programs from Mac & Windows performed perfectly from the Time Machine backup! No reloading windows programs & re-entering of serial numbers .....fantastic. Love it!!
Pros Fast enough to actually work in now. Many OS options. Very configurable. Can resize the drive and allocate more RAM and processor power as needed. Works seamlessly with Mac OS X Lion.
Cons A few settings could be more understandable. Pop-up ads on login are annoying, but if it helps them keep costs down I can live with that. More online help options would be nice, perhaps more articles in their Knowledge base.
Summary Parallels has for many years been a staple for us who want to run some Windows-only program on our Macs, but I always found it limited to low-power apps. I develop cross-platofrm, custom software in FileMaker Pro and I would use Parallels to test my software on Windows. Parallels 7 improved the efficiency and speed of Windows on the Mac to the point that I can actually develop in Parallels. Now with Lion Server support I even run a test FileMaker, web and SQL servers along with three Windows machines (not at the same time!). Parallels has become an indispensable tool for working in a cross-platform world.