Using Parallels Desktop 10 to run Ensemble on an Apple Mac

I finally succumbed to buying Parallels Desktop 10 for my Apple Mac, to stop me having to reboot every time I wanted to run Ensemble. Parallels is ‘virtualisation’ software that allows me to run Windows in a window on my Mac. As I had already installed Windows on BootCamp I was able to get Parallels to use that installation. This means I can still reboot into Windows when I’m doing demos or running maps, without loosing any data.

It all works surprisingly well. I think it’s great for designing and testing maps, but I wouldn’t want to use it to play music in critical applications. I can definitely detect a very short delay between pressing a switch and sound being produced. This maybe due to the settings I’m currently using.

One small point is that you need to tell the computer what to do with anything plugged into the USB ports of your Mac. Should it be using them with the virtual PC or with your Mac?

Parallels SettingsA ‘Devices’ menu option at the top of the screen shows you what is currently connected and also allows you to configure USB. I choose the option for the PC to ask me the first time I connect a device. Once I’ve been asked I can add the device to the list of items it always connects to the PC. This is ideal for the Ensemble Mini or the Pretorian (Inclusive) SimplyWorks switches.