The last time we took a look at Parallels Desktop was Version 6, which was back in 2011! Now we’re at Parallels Desktop 10 and it couldn’t be better. Parallels Desktop is one of those go-to programs for your Mac when you need to virtualise an operating system (probably Windows) and it’s certainly sufficient to get the job done. In this version of Desktop, Parallels have improved the speed and reliability which turns virtualisation into a totally native experience.
This version of Parallels has been built specially for Yosemite and Windows 8.1 and it definitely shows. The Coherence mode allows you to integrate Windows into the Mac desktop easily and effortlessly. In previous versions, pushing the Windows icon in the dock brought up the traditional Windows Start Menu, however, in this version it brings up the Windows 8 Start Screen in it’s full glory. Clicking on an application will open it just like an OS X application – it’s almost like it’s completely native.
The Yosemite and Parallels integration experience continues, you’ll find your iButt Drive and iPhoto Library automatically added to Windows allowing you to save your documents. You’ll also be able to share pictures and other links with your social media accounts setup on the Mac site easily by right clicking in Windows. Additionally, Continuity integration also exists – you’ll be able to click on a phone number in Windows and the call will be made on your iPhone. You’ll also find a Notification Centre widget included, showing the current resource usage for each virtual machine.
There’s some behind the scene performance boosts as well, Parallels have said they’ve worked hard on improving the performance of Desktop. Parallels say that virtual machines now use 10% less Mac RAM and a 30% improvement for battery life. Meaning your computer will run faster and longer when virtualising. Additionally, snapshots are 50% faster and loading Applications like Microsoft Office are 50% faster as well.
9.0 / 10
New Yosemite integration, performance improvements
Probably the best way to run Windows on your Mac
Overall, Parallels Desktop 10 allows you to do what it does best, virtualise Windows on your Mac! Whether you have an iMac or a MacBook, Parallels will run quickly and efficiently allowing you to run those programs that only run on Windows. With a whole heap of new Yosemite integration features and other improvements, Parallels remains a great way (and possibly the best way) to run Windows on your Mac.