Running DynaSCAPE on a Mac

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Can I run DynaSCAPE on a Mac computer?

The answer is yes you can run DynaSCAPE products on a Mac computer, but not in the native Mac environment.


How do you run DynaSCAPE on a Mac computer?

There are several products available that allow you to install a Windows Operating Systems (Windows 8.1 or 10 preferred) on a Mac computer. Each requires a separate purchase of a Windows Operating System (OS) and each operates a little differently, so you need to choose the one that is best suited to your needs. The following are three options to consider:

  • Boot Camp – free with Mac’s OS, plus your licensed copy of Windows
    • This allows you to partition your hard drive and install Windows natively on your Mac
  • Parallels Desktop – costs $79.00, plus your licensed copy of Windows
    • This allows you to install Windows in a virtual environment on your Mac
  • VMware Fusion – costs $79.00, plus your licensed copy of Windows
    • This allows you to install Windows in a virtual environment on your Mac

Note: you will need a 2-button mouse for DynaSCAPE Design’s right-click options. We have found success with a wired Might Mouse when using Parallels.


Option A: Boot Camp

This application comes free with Mac’s OS. All you need to do is purchase Windows, start up Boot Camp to install a Windows OS. To run the Windows OS, reboot your computer and choose Boot Camp to start up with. DynaSCAPE products can be installed and used from within Windows installed on your Mac using Boot Camp.

Link: Mac 101: Using Windows on your Mac via Boot Camp

What’s good about Boot Camp?

  • Comes free with Mac’s OS
  • Allows you to run Windows natively on your Mac
  • Requires minimal keyboard mapping to get the same functionality as Windows

Challenges with using Boot Camp?

  • You cannot switch to the Mac environment unless you reboot
  • Sharing folders with the Mac OS requires some technical skill
  • Using the [Delete] key to undo requires the use of two keys [fn]+[Delete]

Option B: Parallels Desktop

This application needs to be purchased from a retailer or online ($79.00* – trial available). You can run this product side-by-side with Mac OS X without needing to reboot. You need to purchase a version of Windows, start up Parallels Desktop and install the Windows OS. To run, open Parallels Desktop (without rebooting). DynaSCAPE products can be installed and used from within Windows on Parallels Desktop.

Link: Parallels Desktop website

What’s good about Parallels Desktop?

  • You can run this product side-by-side with Mac OS X without needing to reboot
  • Requires minimal keyboard mapping to get the same functionality as Windows (requires more mapping than Boot Camp but less than VMware Fusion)

Challenges with using Parallels Desktop?

  • Without mapping your keyboard you cannot use [Ctrl]+[shift] as a shortcut to turn on Constraints temporarily in DynaSCAPE Design
  • Using the [Delete] key to undo requires the use of two keys [fn]+[Delete]
  • You cannot run DS|Design if you share folders

System Requirements for Parallels Desktop:

http://www.parallels.com/ca/products/desktop/system-requirements/

Notes about Parallels Desktop 7:

  • To run DS|Design v6 on Parallels you must have version 7 or newer because it has support for Aero theme (Configure > Hardware > Video)
  • 3D acceleration should be turned off for best quality
  • DPI must be set to 100%
  • When setting up Parallels, DO NOT select “Like a Mac”, otherwise you will need to do one of the following:
    • Click the Parallels icon in the menu bar, press and hold the Option (Alt) key and choose Configure
    • If the Parallels Desktop menu bar is visible at the top of the screen, choose Virtual Machine > Configure
    • Click Hardware and select Print.
      • De-Select Add all Mac printers.
  • To prevent errors upon opening DS|Design, please do the following:
    • Click the Parallels icon in the menu bar, press and hold the Option (Alt) key and choose Configure
    • If the Parallels Desktop menu bar is visible at the top of the screen, choose Virtual Machine> Configure
    • Click Options
      1. Select Applications
        • De-Select Share Windows applications with Mac.
        • De-Select Share Mac applications with Windows.
      2. Select Sharing
        • De-Select Shared Profile

Option C: VMware Fusion 4 (or newer)

This application needs to be purchased from a retailer or online ($79.00* – trial available). You can run this product side-by-side with Mac OS X without needing to reboot. Purchase a version of Windows, start up VMware Fusion and install the Windows OS. To run, open VMware Fusion (without rebooting). DynaSCAPE products can be installed and used from Windows within VMware Fusion.

Link: VMWare Fusion website

What’s good about VMware Fusion

  • You can run this product side-by-side with Mac OS X without needing to reboot

Challenges with using VMware Fusion

  • Requires some keyboard mapping to get the same functionality as Windows (more than Boot Camp and Parallels Desktop)
  • Without mapping your keyboard you cannot use [Ctrl]+Click to edit properties of objects in DynaSCAPE Design
  • Without mapping your keyboard you cannot use [Ctrl]+[shift] as a shortcut to turn on Constraints temporarily in DynaSCAPE Design
  • Using the [Delete] key to undo requires the use of two keys [fn]+[Delete]
  • You cannot run DS|Design if you share folders

System Requirements for VMware Fusion:

http://www.vmware.com/products/fusion/system_requirements.html

Notes about VMware Fusion 4:

  • To run DS|Design v6 on VMware Fusion you must have version 4 or newer because it has support for Direct X and Aero theme (Virtual Machine > Settings > Display)
  • DPI must be set to 100%

Conclusion

If you wish to run DynaSCAPE products on a Mac computer you have several options as outlined above. If you don’t mind rebooting to use DynaSCAPE, Boot Camp is going to be the best for you because it will feel the most like running in a native Windows OS. If you will need to switch between Mac and Windows while using DynaSCAPE Products because you use Mac applications for all your other work, Parallels Desktop or VMware Fusion will likely be your better option.


Support Policy

The DynaSCAPE Software Suite (Design, Color & Manage360) is compatible with 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows, and while we will support the DynaSCAPE applications directly, we cannot assist with or support configuration of 3rd party applications (Boot Camp, VMware, Parallels) which are used to emulate a Windows environment on a Mac computer system. As a courtesy, however, we will offer assistance in the form of advice or suggestions on a case by case basis depending on staffing and call volume. We cannot guarantee resolutions relating to issues with any 3rd party application.


Windows for Mac Comparison Chart:

Description/Action Parallels Desktop VMware Fusion Boot Camp
Cost
$79.00* + Windows OS $79.00* + Windows OS Free with Mac OS + Windows OS
Windows OS
XP, Vista, 7, 8.1, 10 7, 8.1, 10 XP, Vista, 7, 8.1, 10
Installation
No issues No issues No issues
DS|Design Functionality:
File sharing No No Yes – Advanced User
Shared printing No Yes No
2-button mouse Required Required Required
Mouse operation Acceptable Acceptable Good
Laptop Touch Pad Use [Ctrl] + click for right-clicking [Ctrl] + click for right-clicking [Ctrl] + click for right-clicking
DS|Design Keyboard shortcuts:
Key for undo [Delete] in Windows [fn]+[Delete] [fn]+[Delete] [fn]+[Delete]
[Ctrl]+Click to edit properties Yes No Yes
[Ctrl]+[shift] to turn on Constraints No No Yes
[shift] to turn on Inference Yes No Yes
Pros: Can operate at the same time as Mac environment Can operate at the same time as Mac environment Feels most like the Windows environment, lowest cost option
Cons: Mouse not smooth, need to map keyboard, files sharing may be problematic Mouse not smooth, need to map keyboard, files sharing may be problematic Cannot operate at the same time as Mac environment – need to reboot
Comments: Virtualized in Mac Virtualized in Mac Native Windows

DS|Design v5 Settings and Requirements

If you are using DS|Design v5 and Windows 7 on your Mac, either virtualized or in Boot Camp, you may experience performance issues while moving or copying and pasting large amounts of geometry. This is due to the 2D rendering changes made by Microsoft with Vista and and more so with Windows 7. These issues have been addressed for DS|Design v6.

If you are still using v5 we recommend choosing a Windows 7 basic theme to improve the performance. Updating to v6 alleviates these issues and this version works best with one of the Aero themes.

You can change themes using the instructions below:

  1. Open Theme Settings by clicking the Start button
  2. Click on Control Panel
  3. Click on Appearance and Personalization
  4. Click on Personalization
  5. Click on one of the Basic and High Contrast Themes ( Windows 7 Basic or Windows Classic theme are recommemded for v5)
  6. Click OK

The only drawback we have discovered with this workaround is that you may notice some hesitation when moving modifier panels around on the drawing page in v5. Updating to v6 is recommended.


DS|Design v6 Settings and Requirements

DS|Design v6 now has options to use either your computer’s CPU (Default – Software rendering) or using your computer’s video card (Hardware rendering) to render the drawing page graphics. If your computer has a good video card you can switch to Hardware rendering through the Performance Options panel found under the Environment menu in DS|Design. (click here to see the release notes for v6)

Windows Themes:

Vista or Windows 7 users will experience the best performance using one of the Windows Aero themes. The Basic themes do not perform as well.

Click here to learn how to change your Windows theme to Aero

Display Settings:

Currently DS|Design v6 works best at the default DPI settings. We plan on providing more flexibility in a future release, but for the time being you will probably find you need to set your DPI settings to the default. To do this, follow the instruction for Windows 7 and Vista below.

Windows 7: Set your Windows Display to Smaller – 100% (Default). DS|Design v6 will not run correctly if you changed your settings to Medium (125%) or larger (150%). If you try to run v6 with your display set to 125 or 150%, DynaSCAPE will warn you to change it to the default

Vista: Set your Windows Display to Default Scale (96 DPI). DS|Design v6 will not run correctly if you changed your settings to Larger Scale (120 DPI) or to a Custom DPI.. If you try to run v6 with your display set to 120 DPI or a custom DPI, DynaSCAPE will warn you to change it to the default (96 DPI).

Click here to learn how to change your Display Settings to the Default setting

Video Cards for Hardware rendering:

Although we cannot guarantee which video cards will result in optimal performance, a 512 MB dedicated video card (separate from the motherboard) with support for DirectX 9 graphics is recommended if you plan to use Hardware rendering. If you are using a lower end computer or laptop with an integrated (onboard) video card, there may be some blurriness in the middle of the drawing window. If your drawing window is noticeably blurry in the middle of the screen, the following suggestions may provide an improvement:

  1. Update your video card drivers
  2. Upgrade your video card to a mid (or high) range dedicated video card ($50-$100)