Mac Parallels Training

Parallels is a tool that allows the Mac user to run Windows Vista. Parallels allows you to use Windows PC software on your Mac machine, as well as perform any other function Vista is capable of. Parallels also lets you choose between seeing the Windows desktop in place of the Mac desktop and viewing Vista in its own window. This tutorial is meant to enable you to use Parallels in an informed and confident manner.


Upon completion of this 1-on-1 training, you will be able to:


Starting Up

  • Select the Parallels icon to open up the Parallels Desktop and Configuration Editor.

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  • Click the Green Arrow to Power-On the virtual machine. You will begin to see the Vista startup screen and the standard welcome screen. It will take a few minutes for Vista to be ready for use.

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Logging In

  • Click in the Parallels desktop window.
    • Laptop Keyboard Users: Press Fn+Ctrl+Alt+Del to display the Log On to Windows dialog box.
    • Desktop Keyboard Users: Press Ctrl+Alt+Del on the keyboard.

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The Cursors

Once you are logged in, the screen looks like any other Vista computer (see below). The cursor will change colors depending where you are working. Pressing Ctrl + Alt will release the mouse from Vista and allow you to use it for Mac OS X.

  • The black cursor indicates you are working on the OS X desktop.
  • The white cursor indicates you are working on the Vista desktop.

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If you do not have a two button mouse, try one of the following:

  • To right-click, hold down Shift + Ctrl on either laptop or desktop keyboards and use your mouse or touchpad to select your desired item.
  • You can also right-click using the laptop touch pad by holding two fingers on the touch pad and clicking on the icon you wish to manage.

Switching To Fullscreen Mode

  • To switch to Fullscreen select View > Fullscreen from the menu bar. The screen will immediately rotate and only display the Vista desktop.

Switching Back To The OS X Desktop

  • To switch back to the Mac OS X desktop press Ctrl + Option or Option + Return.

Exiting Parallels

To exit Parallels safely, the proper steps must be followed.

  1. Shut down Vista by clicking on Start > Shut Down. Do NOT stop Parallels using the red Stop button- it is safer to shut down in Vista.
  2. When Vista has shut down, it is safe to exit Parallels by clicking Parallels > Quit Parallels in the Menu Bar.

Additional Resources

Review the Help within Parallels

Click Help > Parallels Desktop Help on the Menu Bar.

Review Online Parallels Help

Online technical support from Parallels is available here. The troubleshooting wizard is particularly helpful.

Review the Technology Help Desk web site

Contact the Technology Help Desk