Upgrading to Windows 8 with Parallels Desktop without an Existing Windows License or Install

If you haven’t heard, the incredibly smooth VM software Parallels Desktop for Mac is on sale both on their website and as part of a File bundle on StackSocial. If you’re a Genova Mac user and have been itching to try cheap jerseys the latest version of Windows, or just need to use a Windows-only application, Parallels makes it (reasonably) straight forward to install and run Windows 8.

With the release of Windows 8, Microsoft has all but done away with the standalone OS sale. They want you to either upgrade straight from an existing earlier version of Windows (XP, Vista, or 7) via a digital download, or buy the upgrade in a brick and mortar store for $30 more. If you decide to build your own PC or run Windows in a VM, you’ll either need to install an older version of Windows first before upgrading, or purchase the Windows 8 Pro System Builder version (at full version prices). Additionally, the upgrade process preserves the type of OS you are upgrading from. So if you’re running Windows XP 32-bit but want to install 8 on a fancy new 64-bit computer, Santa you’re forced to buy the retail upgrade (it comes with media for both 32 and 64-bit Very processors) or run the 32-bit version of 8.

This is less than economical for the occasional Windows use with Parallels and, at the very least, a hassle. Fortunately there’s a bit of a workaround.

Parallels includes an install link to the Windows 8 Release Preview. It will install as 64-bit on your 64-bit computer. Okay, but why bother? It’s not the full version, most applications won’t even install. Yes, but… Microsoft allows you to run the Upgrade Advisor on and permits upgrade pricing for the Release cheap jerseys Preview. So here’s what you need to do to get your Windows 8 Upgrade on Parallels Desktop for Mac:

  1. Install Parallels live Desktop for Mac.
  2. Create a new VM install by going to File >> New… and selecting “Download Windows 8 Free” from the Parallels Wizard pop-up. This is the Release Preview.
  3. Select your language preference and install.
  4. Once your Windows 8 Release Preview is installed, open cheap nba jerseys internet explorer and search for and Grace run the Windows Upgrade Advisor (hint: it’s on a Microsoft website).
  5. Purchase your upgrade and follow the instructions from the advisor to install.

Once installed you’ll need to reinstall the Parallel Tools on your Windows VM so you can run in Coherence mode:

  1. With your Windows 8 VM open select from the Parallels menu Virtual Machine >> Reinstall Parallels Tools.
  2. In Windows you’ll get a notification that a disc is in your virtual drive, open and run that to install the Parallels Tools.

Now you’re ready to Comparisons run Visual Studio (or whatever Windows-only app you cheap mlb jerseys like) as if it were a native app in OS X!

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6 comments

  1. Is their any cost for the update, pls give the solution

  2. I followed your steps, but price comes up as $119, not $40. I wonder if I missed special pricing?

    • Yes, there was a nice special going on at the time the post was first published. I think it ended in January.

      • Does this method, i.e. without existing Windows License, still works via Parallel 8? I have the Windows 8 Pro Upgrade DVD but not the full version and like to use it on my Mac. Thanks for the info.

        • As far as I know, yes, it should. Another thing you could do, and I ended up doing this a few months ago, is install the release candidate version of Windows, download the full installer, then use Boot Camp to install Windows directly on your hard drive. Once you’ve done that, you can select your new Windows partition from Parallels. This way you can choose to boot into Windows, or run it through Parallels all from the same partition. Works pretty well.

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