Vista isn't showing two CPU's, only 1

Discussion in 'Windows Virtual Machine' started by mbpchicago, Jun 15, 2007.

  1. mbpchicago

    mbpchicago Bit poster

    Hi everyone,
    I have a MBP with Vista Boot Camp partition. Now, Parallels 3.0 will let you virtualize your boot camp partition, so I did just that.

    I opened my Vista partition in Parallels, and everything was smooth, until I saw that only 1 CPU was being used. I did some research and found out that Parallels does in fact limit the guest OS to one CPU while OSX uses the other CPU. No problem there, but now I've shutdown Vista and rebooted my mac and loaded up Vista via Boot Camp.

    You guessed it, only 1 CPU is being shown, and there is no option to display two CPU's. My guess is Parallels turned off some dual core functaionality switch and I have no control over.

    I sent an email to Parallels but not reply yet and that was almost 4 days ago, can anyone help?
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2007
  2. bgose

    bgose Member

    The only advice concerning Parallels support is...don't hold your breath.

    The product is really great, the support really isn't.

    I can't help you with your Vista problem, but maybe I can save you some frustration. Just let it go and hope someone here is smart enough to help you with your issue.
  3. mbpchicago

    mbpchicago Bit poster

    bgose, thanks I kind of realized they would not respond to my email. i actually learned more from the internet and google than I did from the parallels website.

    I'm going to continue to find a solution, but I think in the end, it's going to be a fresh install of Vista and never using Parallels again!!!!!!!!!!
  4. jmaluso

    jmaluso Junior Member

    edited. saw you were talking about boot camp...
  5. Ynot

    Ynot Pro

    Ok. We'll try to reproduce it here. Thanks for your report.
  6. Ungenious

    Ungenious Member

    Have you noticed reduced performance too as in, is it maybe a cosmetic issue?

    Anyone else having this problem? Tad bit worrisome... I HATE re-installing Windows.

  7. mbpchicago

    mbpchicago Bit poster

    GREAT NEWS!!!!

    I was able to figure out what the problem was. Parallels swaps out the HAL driver (hardware abstraction layer) when it loads OS's like XP or Vista. The reason it does that is because it wants to dedicate 100% of Core1 to the guest OS, and leave both cores for OSX. The hope here is to have an almost 1 core to 1 OS split.

    What HAL does is figure out what CPU you are using, either single or dual core, or more...

    When you quit Parallels, it just leaves the swapped out HAL in the loaded copy of Vista or XP. Therefore, when you load Vista via Boot Camp, the swapped out HAL is still there, so it will not detect both cores.


    After much research on the HAL topic, I was able to figure out some setting in Vista to fix this. Basically, go to msconfig (start->run->type msconfig) and go to Boot, then go to Advanced options, then make sure "detect HAL" is checked.

    Restart Vista now, and you should have both cores working. Make sure to go and uncheck that box, or else Vista will check what HAL you have each time.

    That is all, and no thanks to Parallels Inc, I will not use their program anymore, sorry. Hope this helps some other people who've had similar problems.
  8. dkp

    dkp Forum Maven

    I was wondering when some of these stateful changes were going to bite multi-boot users. Parallels is not making these changes in a stateless way and I can see the difficulty in accomplishing this. Swapping out modules in a mindful way, that is to say, putting things back during a clean shutdown would be expected, but when Windows closes unexpectedly or otherwise in Parallels without being mindful of the state change followed by the user next starting Windows in Bootcamp, the last state for swapped out modules is in a Parallels bootup condition which is quite wrong for that startup mode. This will require some serious code changes or worse, nasty shims added to Bootcamp and Windows. That, if true, would pretty much create a permanent link between Parallels, Bootcamp, and any other product that needs to depend on it - say, Fusion, for example.

    Isn't that going to be interesting.

    I think if I were a Bootcamp user (I'm not!) I would not use the Windows partition in Parallels, but would install a second copy in a virtual disk at least until this is sorted out.

    And I could be entirely wrong, too.
  9. mbpchicago

    mbpchicago Bit poster

    Yeah, I agree, I'm not going to be using Parallels anymore, it's too buggy and I don't want to mess with my Vista partition, since I use it for work.

    I've also read about many people who could not even start their XP or Vista partitions after using Parallels, which sucks, re-installing any OS is a pain especially after you've got your files on there.

    I think Parallels is great if you have an external HDD you want to use for XP, Vista or Ubuntu.

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