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  1. #1
    Window-based software on an iMac

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    Window-based software on an iMac
    I am using OS Sierra 10.12.6 on an iMac Retina 5K 2017

    I now have occasion to use a website whose function works only on Windows devices. About Macs, the site says the function "can be used on a Mac computer with either a Windows® emulator or a cloud-based solution. The cloud-based solution uses the Internet to access the function, so the program can be used with non-Windows-based computers."

    Does anyone here have any suggestions regarding the two choices, Windows emulator or cloud based?
    On its face, the "cloud based" choice looks easier. It is apparently activated simply by clicking "Launch," which I have not done yet, so I don't know for sure what happens when I do. But the "cloud" makes me a little nervous, security-wise. Is that a legitimate concern?

    From what little I know, I believe that "Windows emulator" requires that I purchase a copy of the current Windows operating system (and License). Is that correct?

    I will truly appreciate any thoughts and recommendations. Thank you.

    Stefan

  2. #2
    Window-based software on an iMac
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    Please provide a link to the website so we can see what this cloud based thing is. But you are correct, that to run Windows on your Mac, you will need to grab software that can created a virtual machine and you have options like VirtualBox (free), VMWare Fusion ($80) and Parallels ($80) and you'll also need a legitimate copy of Windows 10 Home (around $120).
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  3. #3
    Window-based software on an iMac
    chscag's Avatar
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    I am using OS Sierra 10.12.6 on an iMac Retina 5K 2017
    In addition to the advice you've already received, you should update your iMac to the latest version of macOS which is Mojave 10.14.6. If you decide on a virtual machine, you may be able to run a version of Windows other than Windows 10. The problem with other versions of Windows is that the license can be just as expensive as Windows 10.

  4. #4
    Window-based software on an iMac

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    chscag & Raz0rEdge, Thank you both.

    This morning, I learned that the Cloud utility (if that's the right word) that I would be using is "Citrix Workplace," which (according to a Google search) is considered secure. It is provided free of charge by the website where I will use it.

    So, I have decided to go that way. At least for now. I have printed your responses, and set that sheet aside ... just in case.

    As a Windows switcher (as far back as early DOS), I used to have copies of several DOS and many Windows versions (up to Windows 7), but after switching to the MacBook Pro seven or so years ago, and loving it, and then "upgrading" to the iMac, I gave away all of those. If it turned out I needed to do so, I was prepared to purchase whatever Windows version required, but not having to do so is welcome.

    I apologize for changing my mind mid-stream.

  5. #5
    Window-based software on an iMac
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    Yes, Citrix is a secure thing since it's not generically available but rather set up by specific companies for people to use. It basically runs the OS on remote servers and you get a "thin client" that allows you to view the UI and interact with it.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  6. #6
    Window-based software on an iMac

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    Raz0rEdge, Thank you for your comments about Citrix. That's reassuring.

  7. #7
    Window-based software on an iMac
    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    As a side note, the idea of running software on beefy servers remotely while allowing people to have nothing more than a network connection, monitor, keyboard and mouse was touted as being the way all future computing would happen for a while. However, in practical terms, it turned out that this ONLY ever worked and was useful for productivity applications and failed for everything else. To that end, this entire concept was abandoned.

    Interestingly, this concept came back to life (very shortly) in the late 2000's in the arena of gaming. OnLive tried the concept of running games with all of their intensive needs on remote servers and touted the idea of you being to be play them with nothing more than a browser. They tried a "microconsole" to give you the console feel. The company and their servers were based out of California and turned out that with the necessary network speeds, this was only really feasible within a certain radius from their servers. Once you went far enough, the connection speed went down and the lag made the games unplayable. Needless to say, this didn't work out.

    With newer Cloud based technologies (and the ability to have data centers closer to everyone), this type of gaming is now moving to the Cloud with entires like Google's Stadia. Let's see how well this fares.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  8. #8
    Window-based software on an iMac

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    Thank you. Interesting stuff.

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