Take Control of Windows on a Mac

By Joe Kissell

Review By: Ray Bowler

Well Joe Kissell has done it again. The “Take Control” books are uniform in their excellence and detailed answers to the questions we ask. To be brief about that I say below--if you think you want to run Windows apps on your Mac get this book and work through it. It is well worth the price.

The answers are as basic as how to Right-Click in Windows with various devices, what is the System Tray and what the terminology is in various versions of Windows. A warning that when finishing installing Windows you get a message informing you that you can press any key(has any one ever found the “any” key?) to start from the CD. He warns you twice to ignore this message and explains why. Details like this keep your installation moving smoothly. Two questions I have read in lists are how to backup the Windows image and what to do about virus protection. He goes into detail about both of these issues. He goes into careful detail about what to do and not to do in Boot Camp and the virtualization installs. He also describes the installation for different Windows OSs.
The first installation which he covers is Boot Camp. He even warns the user to be sure and back up the Mac. He goes through each stop in the process and includes a warning on one screen that selecting any drive other that c:/ could destroy data on the Mac partition. Size of partitions, how many bits to use, what file system to select and why are included.

He then explains Virtualization software and how it is used. First he goes step by step through installing and using Parallels. Then he deals with VMware Fusion in details. Next is VirtualBox (a freebie) and he goes into detail again. In each of these he goes into details about back up and sharing files.

I am at once disappointed and understanding that he only gives a brief description of software to run Windows programs without a Windows OS. He describes Wine, Crossover, Cider and ReactOS. Having played with Wine and investigated Crossover I understand why he didn’t spend a lot of space with them. Only about 37 Windows apps run the same way in Crossover as in Windows. They are working to increase the number but it is really limiting. The one application which I have ran under Wine aborts when I tried to do anything with it and trying to run Internetexplorer.exe gets me a message I haven’t worked on enough to fix.

At the end he describes how to solve printer problems and how to create a Slipstream Installer Disc if you need it for earlier versions of of Windows which do not have the service pack updates which you need to install under Boot Camp.