Enable VT on the Mac Mini.

Discussion in 'Parallels Desktop for Mac' started by Joshua LeVasseur, Apr 13, 2006.

  1. mkpro17

    mkpro17

    Messages:
    12
    Mac Mini VT enabled

    This worked for me, I have the core duo with 2GB of Ram.

    Don't just download and install, make sure to read the directions or the update wont 'actually apply it self.

    Here is a link to the apple page that has the Firmware download and instructions for applying it.

    After I did it my VT-x error went away.

    http://www.apple.com/support/downloads/macminiearly2006firmwareupdate10.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  2. jaketraynham

    jaketraynham

    Messages:
    2
    This "Mac mini (early 2006) Firmware Update 1.0" did not do anything for my mac mini, and yes, I installed it and applied it correctly (been doing apple firmware updates for a long time). I think this update is just supposed to help some of the earlier models work with Boot Camp.

    After you installed all this and re-ran parallels and your vm, did the parallels' about dialog show that it was using the "Intel VT-x" virtualization mode, or does it still say "software 0"? If it does say it's using vtx, then I guess the above firmware update does different things for different minis. *shrug*

    Jake
     
  3. vleck

    vleck

    Messages:
    1
    Jaketraynham:

    You methodology worked great! Just a few clarifications for newbies (like me).
    To make the image writable, mount the eEFIt-0.5.dmg in Disk Utility (and select it) and then File->New->Disk image from Disk 3s2 (rEFIt). Change Image Format to "Read/Write" and name it something and save to desktop. Then mount the disk and copy the "wmx" folder over to the image. Follow the rest of the instructions.

    Also, I had more luck holding down the "C" key during the reboot to bring up the boot menu. Option key didn't work for some reason, maybe because I am using a wireless Microsoft Keyboard? I assume the "Start" key is the same as the Option key.

    I noticed that CPU usage is MUCH lower with the VT turned on!

    Van

    Van
     
  4. rthelen

    rthelen

    Messages:
    6
    Mac Mini VT-x upgrade worked, running Linux

    The Mac Mini I'm using initially stated that VT-x wasn't enabled. I followed the instructions stated in this thread (though, they were quite difficult to follow) and I'm now this update from within Fedora Core 4 running on Parallels 2.1 Beta 3 for Mac OS X :D

    I've set up the video to 1400x1050. I can drag windows around on the screen (large windows!) and they look fine. My CPU is spending about 30% of it's time in Parallels. I can imagine that there are pseudo drivers for the keyboard, mouse, disk, and video that would greatly reduce my CPU consumption. I'll look for those next.

    In short, things are running well. I'm actually going to screw everything up by installing Xen on my shiny new virtual machine. I'm a glutton for punishment. ;)

    Oh, one other thing. Fedora Core 4 is a four CDROM install. It took me a while to figure out the magic on that one. But, downloading the iso images from the net and connecting to images worked like a champ.

    Interestingly, comparing Mac OS X Activity Monito to Linux "System Monitor" (the one running in the virtual machine) indicates a delta of between 30 and 50% CPU utilization. That is, the Mac OS X Activity Monitor shows about 30% CPU utilization when my Linux System Monitor shows 2-5%. Whereas when I drag windows around, the Mac OS X Activity Monitor shows near 80% CPU activity while the Linux System Monitor shows about 30%. Again, I figure these will change quite a bit with pseudo drivers.
     
  5. Djoh

    Djoh

    Messages:
    42
    MiniMac/Core Solo: VT-x enabled w/ Firmware Update

    So I went onto www.apple.com as soon as I got this new MiniMac w/ Core Solo, and updated the firmware. Sorry, I didn't even think to download and check the virtualization prior to updating everything possible on the new computer (just instinct I guess).

    So it updated the OS by itself, and I grabbed the "Mac Mini (early 2006) Firmware Update 1.0.1" ( http://www.apple.com/support/downloads/macminiearly2006firmwareupdate101.html ). I'd suggest going to Apple>>Support and searching for "Firmware" and finding the latest one, in case they release more.

    Then while installing Windows, the virtualization switched to VT-x, as can be seen in the screenshot below.

    A computer that can run Mac OS and Windows XP natively for $700??? Damn good deal if you ask me. It's painful (sometimes) being an engineer who hates Windows, like when you have to program in M$ .NET... yuck, Programming and Microsoft software, can it get much worse?

    Anyway, this thing rules, and who knew FrontRow was so badass??? I highly recommend the purchase ($30 for the software is great!!), I didn't do anything wierd to this computer and it just works.



    screenshot:
    http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/5494/winxpviaminimacsolo5ug.png

    Machine Name: Mac mini
    Machine Model: Macmini1,1
    CPU Type: Intel Core Solo
    Number Of Cores: 1
    CPU Speed: 1.5 GHz
    Memory: 1 GB
    Bus Speed: 667 MHz
    Boot ROM Version: MM11.0055.B03
    Serial Number: YM6093L3XXX
    SMC Version: 1.3f2
     
  6. Djoh

    Djoh

    Messages:
    42
    Vleck:

    typically "ALT" is the equivalent of "Option", unless you chose otherwise via the System Preferences.
     
  7. ntang

    ntang

    Messages:
    1
    Djoh, did you have to do anything else to enable VT-x? I just upgraded the firmware on my box to the latest one and no difference... and I did try shutting it down again and leaving it off for a few minutes, just in case it operates like the manual process outlined above.
     
  8. dcrobinson1965

    dcrobinson1965

    Messages:
    1
    Joshua,

    Your solution looks great, seems to make sense, and people are having a lot of success with it. Well done!

    I've owned my MacMini for 2 weeks, and I'm scared of breaking it! I've been a PC owner for a long time, and I don't know much about Macs and EFI. Is there any real possibility that I could completely break my Mac if this update goes wrong? Can any "issues" be corrected by reapplying the factory firmware off the CD-ROM?
     
  9. Joshua LeVasseur

    Joshua LeVasseur

    Messages:
    6
    dcrobinson, worst case is that you lose electricity sometime during the process, but since my update changes a single byte, it shouldn't be possible to make the configuration inconsistent. The other possible harm is that you misconfigure rEFIt. But I'm pretty sure that anything you do can be fixed by reapplying the factory firmware from the CDROM, and by performing a disk repair to make your system bootable again.

    -Josh
     
  10. Joshua LeVasseur

    Joshua LeVasseur

    Messages:
    6
  11. Andrew @ Parallels

    Andrew @ Parallels Parallels Developers

    Messages:
    1,507
    Attachment is fixed - thanks for reporting!
     
  12. bogg

    bogg

    Messages:
    3
    this "hack" worked fine on my Core Duo mini.

    Thanks!
     
  13. jamiefiedler

    jamiefiedler

    Messages:
    1
    i can confirm the vmx-var-set.efi procedure was successful on my core duo mini.

    not sure if it made a difference, but after running the restart, console, vmx-ser-var.efi, exit procedure, i booted into os x and put the mini to sleep for 60 seconds. woke it up, and then ran parallels. i now show "Virtualization Mode: Intel VT-x" as intended.

    screenshot:
    http://www.auralogic.com/osx/img/mini_parallels.png

    Hardware Overview:
    Machine Name: Mac mini
    Machine Model: Macmini1,1
    CPU Type: Intel Core Duo
    Number Of Cores: 2
    CPU Speed: 1.66 GHz
    L2 Cache (shared): 2 MB
    Memory: 1 GB
    Bus Speed: 667 MHz
    Boot ROM Version: MM11.004B.B00
    Serial Number: G86177HEU39
    SMC Version: 1.3f4
     
  14. ucsfer

    ucsfer

    Messages:
    1
    Hi: I know this is old history for you, but I am new at trying to activate my mini's vt-x. I tried your system up to the point of holding down the option key when loading the disk of rEFit with the vmx file copied to it (even copied this stuff to a stick) and all I get every time is activation of startup mamager, i.e., I see my main disk but nothing else (like rEFit). I cannot, therefore, get beyond that point.
    Is there a step that I have missed?

    Thanks.
     
  15. Joshua LeVasseur

    Joshua LeVasseur

    Messages:
    6
    Apple fixed the bug

    Apple replied to my original bug report, and said that they fixed the VT bug in their latest Mac Mini firmware. Perhaps try that first.

    -Josh
     
  16. AlexTheStampede

    AlexTheStampede

    Messages:
    10
    UHm... i must be doing something wrong.
    This is what i did:
    Downloaded latest rEFIt
    Downloaded the vmx.zip file
    Burned rEFIt on a cd rom
    Placed contents of vmx.zip into /
    Rebooted with "C" pressed, rEFIt shows up
    Then every combination i could think of.
    Select the vmx-var-set.efi from rEFIt interface
    Got with the shell to the correct disck and typed the file name, turned off the mini, unplugged did pretty much everything, even unplugging it before turning off.
    Still i get software 0.
    (Core Solo)
     
  17. joem

    joem

    Messages:
    1,247
  18. AlexTheStampede

    AlexTheStampede

    Messages:
    10
    Actually i installed (correctly) both of them before Parallels. So i guess Apple fixed the bug... in a way that virtualization can't be enabled anymore, nor by mistake, nor with not so easy procedures, getting back to what they meant to do in the beginning?
    Not good news :-|
     
  19. Scott Willsey

    Scott Willsey

    Messages:
    174
    Well, they haven't "fixed it" on my system with software updates, if that's what you are getting at. I have all the latest updates including firmware updates, and VT-x still works fine on this core duo mini.
     
  20. AlexTheStampede

    AlexTheStampede

    Messages:
    10
    Same here, updated to the latest OS X, firmware and all, but i get the "software 0" thing while on my way to install Win 98.
    And it's a Core Solo.
     

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