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Parallels Users Can Ask Ben Anything - working with iSight, Coherence tricks, loading DOS in a VM

Here is the latest edition of Parallels Ask Ben Anything for all of the Parallels users out there:

I saw that you introduced iSight support for Windows in the most recent RC. When I click on it in the USB menu, it doesn't load. How do I get that working?

- Anonymous

Yes, its true that we're introducing iSight support into the Update, which should be released in its final form in the next few weeks. Below you'll see how to get your iSight camera working in Windows.

Please keep in mind before you try this that this is BETA SOFTWARE, and that there are still occasional bugs. Back up your virtual machine before upgrading to the Update Release Candidate. You can always go back to build 1970 and reconnect that image if you'd like.

  1. Make sure that you're working with the most recent build of the Parallels Desktop for Mac Update.
  2. Install Mac Drivers for Windows into your guest OS:
  3. Reboot when prompted.
  4. Connect iSight as a USB device to Parallels Desktop. You'll find it labeled as "Built-In iSight" in the USB menu.
  5. Wait a bit while it is installed.
  6. Go to My Computer and see the Apple Built-In iSight shortcut. Double-click it. Enjoy your face :)


I've been using Coherence for a while now, and I've decided that its just wrong to see the Windows taskbar on my OS X machine. But, when the taskbar's hidden, I can't access my start menu or my programs without going back to windowed mode or fullscreen mode. Any workaround for this?


- Jarred L.

Two, actually. First, you can set the Windows taskbar to be visible in Coherence, but set it to "auto-hide" so its only visible when you mouse over it. You can set the taskbar to auto-hide by right-clicking it in windows, clicking "properties" then selecting auto-hide.

Or, if the taskbar is set to be hidden in Coherence mode, you can still access the Windows Start menu by clicking the Parallels Desktop icon in your application dock.


I'm a 62 year old physician, and my office scheduling software runs in DOS. I know, I'm a dinosaur, but I can't justify spending tens of thousands of dollars to upgrade the system to Windows XP. I read that you can run DOS in Parallels. True?

- Bob R.

Absolutely! I actually have DOS running in a VM on my Mac to run Masque Blackjack, a circa 1990 card game program that I've been devoted to since I was in junior highschool.

To load DOS, you'll need to use the Parallels Image tool (or any third party imaging tool) to convert the DOS floppies to .fdd floppy images that can be read on your Mac. Just connect the .fdd to the virtual floppy drive and install as normal. Good luck!

Please read and comment on this on the original post, here.

Published Saturday, February 10, 2007 10:16 PM by David Marshall
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