Help, Version 1.21 has brought both my Mac computers running parallel 9 to such a slow operation I can not effectively use my radio.

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  • Updated 5 years ago
The Mac Tower has 6G of memory, dual quad core xenon processors, upgraded high end Mac video card, 7200 RPM 3T Hard Drives and Apples latest OS. One Gig network on a dedicated switch. No other applications running on the Mac or in the windows 7 environment. The problems below are similar if running windows 32 or 64 bit versions, seems do be only very, very slightly better in 64 bit VM. Both environments were fine running the previous release of the radio software and HRD.
After opening the second slice screen updates and reaction time of any action such as changing bands get slower before action takes place. At the forth slice I am waiting for tens of seconds for a band change. Flex control has a very hard time responding. The software appears to be buffering all inputs from the user but can not respond in a timely manor. Manual tuning is useful for only very small changes and you have to wait to see any change. Adding more than 4 slices can have one waiting minutes for a new action to occur. Missing traces (waterfall) in all the slices at different times. More missing traces with each new slice.
Parallel, has a function to show loading on CPU and memory, max seen was 40% on CPU and 25% for memory use.
The last new condition was the observation of the introduction of RF birdies in the display of other slices when certain combinations of slices were mounted?
The issues are the same with my Mac Pro Laptop (Dual core i7, 8 gig of memory, work fine before. Wireless interface to the flex 6700)
I am missing the use of my radio, and am pleased to see the progress for others to enjoy.
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Watts - K4QJZ

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Posted 5 years ago

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Keith Wolford

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Watts,

I've noticed similar behavior while running under a VM on my 3.46GHz, dual 6-core (12-core) Xeon 2012 Mac Pro with 64GB 1333MHz RAM and made-for-Mac GTX680 EVGA video card.  

In my case, it starts to get too sluggish for good usability once I'm up to 4 panafalls and slices.  If I boot up to my bootcamp partition, everything runs fine, even with up to 8 panafalls and slices active (although I do experience the audio pop/cracks others have mentioned and Flex has already acknowledged).

In my case, I'm connected to my 6700 via hard-wired cat-5e ethernet and a Netgear 8-port gigabit switch, using one of the Mac Pro's built-in Intel 82574L gigabit ethernet NICs.

I have my Parallels 9 VM settings maxed out with 8 cores and 16GB of RAM, as shown below, including DirectX 10 and 1GB of VRAM.

I think SSDR v1.2.1 with the panafall is just a little too graphical and CPU intensive for a VM to handle well, even with a beast of a Mac Pro like mine.  Maybe things will get better with optimization in future releases, or, better yet, a native Mac OS X SSDR app will be available :-).  For now, I'm just enjoying v1.2.1 while running from my bootcamp partition and living with the slight inconvenience.

I've included some screenshots of my configuration that may be of help to you and others to maximize VM performance:

Here is my "About this Mac" screenshot:


Here is my Windows 8.1 virtual machine general configuration:

Here is my VM video config in Parallels 9:


Here's a screenshot of my SSDR Radio Setup screen while running SSDR v1.2.1 under the Parallels Desktop 9 VM.  Note Maximum Graphics Acceleration is indicated:


Keith - AE5XN

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Watts - K4QJZ

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Many thanks for the info. Our systems are similar in there setup. my graphics card is a bit more powerful and the CPUs 2.8G. with your info I suspect the problem is related to the VM driver for the graphics card. Mine has 4G and only shows 1G as does yours. I'll try boot camp as you suggested.
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Tony Taddeo

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You could use Bootcamp to create a Windows partition on your Mac.  You can then choose to either boot up in Mac or Windows OS without the inefficiencies of running an emulator.  This will give you direct access to the machine's resources while running Windows.  Macs do make good Windows machines :) .
(Edited)
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Watts - K4QJZ

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Thanks, I'll try that next.
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Steve - N5AC, VP Engineering / CTO

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This is likely from the drawing of the waterfall which is CPU intensive.  We are looking into more efficient ways to draw the waterfall under Windows which we hope will reduce the need for more CPU.  This is, of course, exacerbated by having to run drawing commands through a VM.  

You might try to turn off one or more Waterfalls by dragging the divider between the panadapter and the waterfall down to the bottom so SmartSDR-Windows stops drawing the Waterfall.  We do continue to collect Waterfall data and you can always restore the Waterfall if required.
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Watts - K4QJZ

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Thanks for the help. I really do not want to give up one of the key feature I invested in two Daytons' ago. In a past post it was stated that the developers use Macs and run Parallel. When they tested this release did they find the same issues? If not can you please pass on their system configuration and the system being used? If they did find issues can we get a list of issues to help know what may be the norm for the moment.

The VM environment gave me many advantages to help test with different OSs and not put my system at risk. I hate to lose the ability to help.


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Don - kx9q

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There was never any guarantee that SSDR would run without issue in a VM.  I gave up on both Parallels and VMware and run exclusively on a Win 7 machine.  I suspect at some point in the future I will probably run Bootcamp on my 16gb iMAC.
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George Molnar, KF2T, Elmer

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Similar issues here, but not quite as bad (Mac Pro, 8 core, 16 GB RAM, SSD). Reducing the waterfall and FPS settings help. Going to 1 CPU in Parallels, interestingly, does help (use "adaptive hypervisor"). Dual graphics cards are a plus, too (I'm using three monitors). Number one on  my birthday wish list is a native Mac app, but am pretty happy right now. Usually no more than two pan adapters running here (Flex 6500).
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Don - kx9q

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George - do you run all modes?  I had big problems running the digital modes when using SSDR in Parallels or VMware.
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George Molnar, KF2T, Elmer

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Good morning, Don - yes, I do run ssb/cw/digi (JT, PSK, RTTY). Only SSDR (along with CAT and DDUtil) runs under Windows 8.1 on the VM. everything else lives on the Mac. I'm using a Signalink USB instead of DAX. DAX works just fine in the VM, but it's a little awkward moving the audio to the Mac. The Signalink path is a little cleaner.

(Edited)
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Don - kx9q

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interesting as I had no issues when I was using the Navigator but when I tried DAX the signal generated in the digital modes was terrible. I just didn't want another device in the chain. Now I use a dedicated PC and DAX without issues.
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George Molnar, KF2T, Elmer

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I sometimes think it would be cool if there was a Windows PC on a PCI card that we could nest inside the Mac for times like this ;-)