Bootcamp/Parallels and the whole reactivation mess

Discussion in 'Windows Guest OS Discussion' started by amazeika, Jun 30, 2007.

  1. amazeika

    amazeika

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    Hello, I installed parallels yesterday. I have a Bootcamp partition with windows XP home edition installed on my MacBook Pro. I run the VM through the Bootcamp partition.

    Yesterday I managed to solve the Windows reactivation problem with a script that replaces the wpa.dbl file. A reactivation was required to do so. Then, Office asked for reactivation (dammit!), same problem. This was solved changing the MAC address of the VM Ethernet device to match the real address of the NIC.

    After all this, Norton Internet Security says: System status: Trial Period Expired. Activation Needed. What the hell?. I tried to find a solution for this and I’m still looking for it. Does somebody had the same problem ? Did you manage to make it work ?. Any help is appreciated.

    Last point, Visual Studio .NET. It doesn’t work, activation required also. In the worst case, I’ll reactivate it over the VM, since I’ll use it on my MAC environment, but a solution to make it work under both Bootcamp and VM would be great.

    I find parallels amazing, it’s beautiful. But, how can you actually say it is compatible with Bootcamp if you are forced to deal with all these problems after the installation. Parallels don’t provide solutions for all this mess, or at least I didn’t find any. Anyways, I’m disappointed because I never imagined that I’ll be forced to deal with all this. In the Parallels web site: Parallels Desktop for Mac Features -> Powerful and Efficient -> Updated! Support for Boot Camp. I’m sorry but, in my opinion the reactivation problem needs to be solved somehow before saying that it has support for boot camp.

    Thanks guys for reading this, and if you managed to solve any of my problems, please help me!
     
  2. w7ox

    w7ox

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    I suspect it is a machine thing and that Windows thinks the Parallels VM is a different machine than the Bootcamp iinstall on the Mac. Even relatively small hardware changes on a PC can make the key fail if you have a problem and need to re-intall Win.

    I called MIcrosoft support and got another Key for my copy of WinXP Pro -- and I have only the Parallels instantiation in use now.

    Phil
     
  3. Levoy Hurley

    Levoy Hurley Bit Poster

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    do I read all this to say that with XP you can run Boot Camp OR Parallels? I seem to have a similar problem. When I installed Parallels I had trouble loading XP so I installed it in BootCamp. But I did the activation in Parallels and now when I try to activate Boot Camp it won't allow it.

    funny, all this activation garbage is EXACTLY why I abandoned Windoze for the Mac 7 yrs ago. Sadly, it's actually worse than I predicted at the time. argh! :mad:
     
  4. djgamble

    djgamble

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    How's it a 'mess' unless you've pirated Windows so can't just connect the net and activate it within a few minutes?
     
  5. Levoy Hurley

    Levoy Hurley Bit Poster

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    you're kidding, right? :rolleyes:

    that's what the M$ folks would like for you to believe. And I suppose it's true - IF you just buy your PC from someone like Dell, use it for x yrs, never make any changes/upgrades, then trash it for a new one. And lots of people actually do that. But the problems you see in this thread are very real ones that are more likely to plague legit users - pirates (good ones) have figured out how to beat the system.

    And this is just the tip of the iceberg. This is not "registration" like you did for Parallels. Parallels (and pretty much any non-M$ app) doesn't care which machine it runs on, or how you upgrade hardware. Microsoft creates a hardware 'profile' of your machine (even if it's a VM) and ties that to your product code by storing it in THEIR database. That's quite different - it "locks" that copy to your current configuration. Get a bigger hard drive? That's a different profile, and M$ will almost always reject your activation attempt after you re-install Windows. To M$'s credit, that sort of problem is usually fixed with a phone call. But it's still a PITA.

    But let's take that Dell PC I mentioned. Go ahead and upgrade the hard drive. But this time when you call M$ for that activation you get a rude awakening. The copy of Windows you thought you bought from Dell (or HP, or Gateway, or anybody) really isn't yours. It's called an "OEM" version, and is only valid on the hardware as it was shipped from Dell. Guess what - that new hard drive just voided the OEM license. You've got to buy a retail copy of Windoze along with that new disk drive!!

    Back to Parallels. Windoze sees Boot Camp and Parallels as different computers - and that would violate the EULA. But of course it's the SAME computer, and that's the rub.

    I don't know about you, but I think calling the process a "mess" seems to be a bit of an understatement. ;)
     
  6. dkp

    dkp

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    1,367
    Parallels and Mac OS X are compatible with BootCamp. Windows is not. Why would you not direct your question to the source of the problem rather than to those who are trying to find work-arounds for the problem? Call Microsoft - they write very unfriendly products and they need to hear from you.
     
  7. John Purins

    John Purins

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    And a very easy method to avoid all of this is to use Windows 2000 Professional. It's the best solution for Mac OS X users who consider Windows a temporary, necessary evil only to be used when there is no other way to do something.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2007
  8. Levoy Hurley

    Levoy Hurley Bit Poster

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    yes, my preference as well. But you forgot to mention exactly where a person could go to buy a (legal) copy. ;)

    I did a few quick checks and failed to come up with a source for anything older than XP. But I'm wondering just in case I find someone with a copy - does owning XP make it "legal" to run 2000 without actually paying full boat for the retail box? A lot of EULAs allow this, but we are talking about Micro$oft. :p
     
  9. James Bond 007

    James Bond 007

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    Unfortunately, while Windows 2000 has no activation, other softwares such as Office XP/2003/2007 and Norton AntiVirus still have, and you still have to deal with the mess if you need to use these softwares under both Boot Camp and Parallels.:mad:

    Not that I disagree with you. Personally I use both Windows 2000 and Windows XP (Corporate version with no activation) with Parallels. And I make a point to avoid any software which uses any kind of internet activation with my Macbook and Windows PC. I don't want to deal with this mess. And I encourage every one to do so if they can.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2007
  10. James Bond 007

    James Bond 007

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    Absolutely agree. The problem is with Microsoft and all other software companies such as Symantec which insists on using activation with their software products, not with Parallels. Complain to Microsoft and Symantec if you must.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. John Purins

    John Purins

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    Google 'Windows 2000 Professional'... I got lots of hits for new, sealed retail copies... just like this one.

    You do have to license Windows 2000 but MS can't dictate what the price is... Someone could sell you a copy that they no longer need for a dollar :)

    Well, as I said; a necessary evil when there is no other way. You don't need Office XP/2003/2007 because a Mac version of MS Office exists.

    As far as Norton AntiVirus and Bootcamp are concerned, anyone who runs that configuration deserves what they're going to get and that is a Windows machine running on Apple hardware. ;)
     
  12. Levoy Hurley

    Levoy Hurley Bit Poster

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    well, considering I paid less than half that for my XP Home I guess I'll have to put up with calling M$ for a new key when things go south. Yes, it's legit - got it through one of those employee discount programs, but 2K wasn't offered. And the Pro versions are a waste for me as my main reason for Windoze is Quicken. The Mac version is awful, especially if you started in Windoze as I did.
     
  13. Kreme314

    Kreme314

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    Well, my opinion would be that the reactivation issues are issues with the software vendors and not with Parallels. Microsoft doesn't even allow virtualization in most of its versions of Vista (it's expressly forbbiden in the license) and this is one of the ways they work to enforce that.
     
  14. Levoy Hurley

    Levoy Hurley Bit Poster

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    fer sure, fer sure. I think basically it all boils down to us venting about the obvious - Windoze is a good OS to be left to others. I was once what you might call a "PC hobbyist" who was always doing something to my beige box. It was fun for a while, but as Windoze got increasingly more complicated it was losing its 'fun factor' pretty quickly. The specter of the activation hassle was the last straw. Bought a Mac and haven't looked backed. Funny, I even managed to get work done on my computer and had time for other things, too. :D

    but here we are, full circle. Sort of. In my case it was the frustration with the Mac version of Quicken that brought me here. But as one who tried to prolong the move from Q-Win by using Virtual PC (2 yrs and gave up), I can say that this solution is infinitely better. Fiddling with VPC was almost as bad as the real thing, and performance was dog slow.

    So far Parallels is what Mac software should be - it just works. I've now removed my BootCamp installation and reinstalled in Parallels. Had to do the deal to get a new code, but that wasn't that bad - this time. I really didn't see myself needing/wanting the ability to boot directly into Windoze, so it's gone. Don't know what the problem was when I first tried it (install in Parallels) but everything went without a hitch. I'm a happy camper. :cool:
     
  15. r4given

    r4given

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    3
    All was well until - -

    I finally got the MS Office 2003 reactivation mess solved on Parallels 2. I set my network adapter in Bootcamp to match the VM. I installed Office using Boot Camp. So, when I tried to use it in Parallels, it would say I needed to reactivate. Then it would say I have exceeded my activations.

    Needless to say, contacting Microsoft was a waste of time. I will never retrieve that hour and a half of my life! They transferred me to 3 departments and then sent me to Apple.

    Good grief.

    As I said, I found the solution on the boards. It worked great until I upgraded to Parallels 3.0.

    Now, I am back in Office activation purgatory and my network adapters are set on the same address. At a loss now.

    Also, not terribly pleased that the snapshot feature doesn't work with Boot Camp. I could use it right about now. :( Overall I love Parallels. I was thrilled until I upgraded. The activation nightmare is the real bummer and I know it is more an issue with M$, they aren't very receptive to our input, either.

    Has anyone else defeated this issue?
     
  16. Bistromaths

    Bistromaths

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    Well, for what it's worth, here is how I solved the problem, and I emphasised this worked for me and may not be the solution for everyone.

    After a long, long, looooong time searching many forums, thinking up ever more creative google searches, I had eventually built up a somewhat practical understanding of the activation process.

    Therefore, bewarned that if you are (in this example) using a MacBook Pro with 2GB RAM, then you must *not* use the default 512MB RAM, but instead increase it to at least 1GB RAM. You obviously need to activate in Boot Camp first since that is, of course, going to be the most important (for intensive apps) and then, for me at least, there magically appeared to be no message about activation anymore in Parallels.

    Really, since Parallels allows you to use the BootCamp partition, they should at least advise you that giving anything less than half of your System's RAM to your Parallels BootCamp will cause these problems.

    Anyway, remember, even though it technically is only one installation of XP (in my case), help Windows out a bit, and allow the two versions to have the most similar hardware possible.
     
  17. chrisj303

    chrisj303

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    Pirated XP/Vista dosen't require activation.....

    Pirated Windows works flawlessly with parallels as a result...
     
  18. itsdapead

    itsdapead

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    177
    Only use BootCamp if you really need it

    The big problem is that, as far as any software can tell, your Virtual Machine is not the same machine as the one running boot camp, so it is fairly inevitable that any software with hardware-signature based activation is going to need re-activation. There's not a lot that Parallels can do about that, since different products (and different versions of the same product) use different techniques.

    The cannot-be-repeated-too-often message is only use boot camp if you really have to - e.g. to run games, 3D or other "heavy duty" software. If you do need boot camp, consider having a separate, virtual disc Windows installation for use with Parallels, even though this may mean you need to buy two copies of Windows - complaints on a postcard to Microsoft. You might even make do with Win2k and older pre-activation versions of Office on the Parallels side.

    Using Parallels to boot from "boot camp" means you miss out on nice features like "suspend" and "snapshots" - and it only takes one activation-locked program to make it seriously inconvenient to "switch" back and forth between modes.

    If this is inconvenient it is because the monopolistic software industry treats consumers with contempt by foisting software activation on us (which is more of an inconvenience to legitimate users than large-scale pirates) making most "industry standard" software basically unfit for purpose.

    The problem with a product like Parallels is that there are all sorts of complexities and subleties like this that mean that "your mileage may vary". Now, Parallels do have a habit of over-hyping features but, on the other hand, if they put every necessary caveat and disclaimer on their brochure it would be the size of a phone book... I'll be interested to see whether VMWare's halo slips a bit now that they have a general release and are dealing with the masses as opposed to the self-selecting beta test crowd.
     
  19. Stan O

    Stan O Parallels Team

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    Hello everyone!
    Let me just jump in with a quick note. We actually ARE working on this problem, but as you can see it is not that easy since there are legal issues involved. As it has previously been mentioned, when you are prompted to activate some piece of software, you'll just have to call it's vendor and honestly explain that you are running it on exactly same set of hardware.
    Thanks!
     

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