Run Mac OS X on Windows 10 Using VMware

I’ve never been a Mac fan, but I do have to say that our family does have several Apple products in our home, 2 iPads and an iPhone… for the kids and my wife. Whether I like to admit it or not they do make a highly polished quality product.

It had been an interest of mine recently to run Mac OS X on my powerhouse PC at home, but I wanted it to run as virtual machine. I raked over some sites that stated it was not possible, I found that rather funny I mean how is it not possible doesn’t Mac run on Intel hardware nowadays anyhow? Then I stumbled on this video.

It does a good job at showing the basic steps, however it doesn’t explain much along the way, I figured it would be good to break this down and explain it.

  1. Download this file (approx. 6 GB), within this file is a file called Yosemite 10.10 Retail VMware.rar, this needs to be extracted to a location of your choice, preferably onto a SSD. This rar file contains VMware prepped OS X files (vmx, vmdk) for use with VMware products.
  2. Install VMware Workstation or VMware Player, I chose the Workstation route since I already had it installed.
  3. Confirm VMware Workstation or VMware Player is installed correctly, and close the program.
  4. Download the latest OS X Unlocker, at the time of writing it is version 2.0.8.
  5. Extract the contents of OS X Unlocker onto your computer. OS X Unlocker essentially patches the installed VMware product so Mac OS X can be installed. It does this modifying some core VMware system files.
  6. Browse to the folder where you extracted OS X Unlocker and Run the following files As Administrator (win-install.cmd and win-update-tools.cmd)os_x_unlocker
    Note: if something goes wrong or you’d like to restore the original files for your VMware application you can run win-uninstall.cmd.
  7. Run VMware Workstation or VMware Player and select Open a Virtual Machine.vmware_open_a_vm
  8. Select the Mac OS X 10.9.vmx file and select Open.vmware_open_vmx
  9. Go to Edit virtual machine settings. Either by right clicking on the Mac OS X 10.9 object on the left side panel or via the tabbed window.vmware_edit_vm
  10. You can keep the default resources if you prefer or bump them up, I personally bumped them up to 8 GB and 2 vCPU. The important option here is Version which is on the Options tab. This needs to be set to Mac OS X 10.7. This option is not available by default, the OS X Unlocker we ran earlier has exposed this option. If for some reason you don’t see this option, look at re-running the OS X Unlocker steps, it needs to be Run as Administrator.vmware_mac_os_x
  11. Now power on the Virtual Machine using Power on this virtual machine or by right clicking and going to Power > Start Up Guest.
  12. The machine will boot up and take you through the OS X setup process, it’s very quick and painless. Once complete it’s now time to install the latest VMware Tools onto the newly created OS X VM. You may have picked up on it when we ran win-update-tools.cmd for OS X Unlocker… it pulled down the latest and greatest for us to mount and install.
  13. Right click on the Mac OS X 10.9 VM on the left side and go to Settings.
  14. Go to CD/DVD and go to Browse and mount the darwin.iso file. Make sure Connected is checked!
    mount_vmware_tools_darwinbrowse_vmware_tools_darwin
  15. The VMware Tools installer should pop right up, just click Install VMware Tools and then reboot upon completion.os_x_vmware_tools
  16. If you want to take it a step further to improve the VM performance there is tool called BeamOff which is included in this file we downloaded in step 1. This tool disables beam synchronization which in turn improves OS X VM performance.
    • Mount the Beamoff Tool.iso similarly to VMware Tools in the step previous. Alternately you can download BeamOff zip and do this yourself if you prefer.
    • Extract the BeamOff application to somewhere on your VM.
    • Go to System Preferences.
      os_x_system_pref
    • Go to Users & Groups.os_x_users_and_groups
    • Click on your User account and select Login Items, click the + and browse and select beamoff.os_x_login_beamoff
  17. At the time of this writing OS X El Capitan is now available, if you want to apply it, go fetch the update from the App Store and install it!os_x_el_capitan

Hopefully you found this informative, I found it interesting and thought I should share my experience.

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KBtalKing v1.1 PRO Mechanical Wireless Keyboard.

I’ve been looking for a wireless gaming keyboard for a while. Specifically a mechanical wireless gaming keyboard. To tell you the truth, there aren’t many out there. Actually I think there are only a couple of companies in the wireless mechanical keyboard business.

After some digging I was able to find a product by KBtalKing. The only thing I was worried about is the fact that it uses Bluetooth as a method of communicating. It uses Bluetooth (BT) 3.0, but in general BT communication is a bit laggy and slow. It is not ideal for gaming where milliseconds matter and can mean the difference between fragging or being fragged. I decided to take the plunge and purchase it anyways. This keyboard can connect up to 10 BT devices including PS3, Android, and iOS devices. Or be connected via a USB cable to a PC.

Both wireless receivers for the mouse and keyboard were connected to a powered USB hub, which is connected to a 85 foot USB 2.0 cable that runs from my living room to my bedroom where my gaming rig is located. Both the keyboard and mouse were about 7-10 feet away from the wireless receivers. The keyboard is rated for bluetooth 3.0 and was connected to a Broadcom bluetooth 4 dongle. The manufacturer recommends Broadcom bluetooth devices as they find they work best with their hardware.

As for the keyboard itself it is Black on Black keycaps with MX cherry red mechanical switches. It comes with extra key caps to replace the windows or command button, and a key cap puller. The red mechanical switches are very sensitive, especially for my big heavy hands. Resting my fingers on the keys of this keyboard is not an option, the slightest touch and the key press is reproduced on screen. It took me a couple days to get used to the sensitivity of the mx cherry reds, but now this is a non issue. I like the key cap remover, I use it all the time to remove the console key for BF3, the #5 key, and the ‘f’ key. I have a very big problem pressing the console key in BF3, where I press it and then I’m stuck not being able to move with the keyboard. This generally happens when I try to select weapon slot 1. With the key cap remover it takes me 2 seconds to pull the key, this way I don’t accidentally press it.

These are plate mounted switches so they can be swapped out if one should so desire.

After setting my TV to GAME mode to minimize input lag I set out to test the wireless keyboard performance, the session was accompanied by a Logitech G700 wireless mouse.

By default I was expecting some lag, the reason being is that my Gaming PC is in my bedroom and I have it connected to my HT in the living room via a HDBaseT device and a 85’ long USB 2.0 cable. With all the cabling running this long distance I expected input lag, and a game like Battlefield 3 to be unplayable.

However to my surprise this was not the case. Not only was the keyboard responsive, the game was playable, very playable. I gamed for several hours with this keyboard in my living room. Not only that, the keyboard was so responsive my game was taken up a notch. I found that it responded very well to my key presses, it was livelier, and a day and night comparison to my G510 rubber dome keyboard. With 6 key rollover, being mechanical and bluetooth 3.0 this keyboard did not miss a beat. In fact it performed well over my expectations.

I even tested the keyboard distance with the Bluetooth dongle I had bought, I got about 12 feet before the signal started breaking up, to the keyboards defence it was through a couple walls.

I’ve never been a fan of wireless keyboards and mice due to the input lag from wireless technologies. Well this is no longer the case, KBtalKing PRO in wireless mode performed very well, gaming grade well. They sell what they advertise. I had a nerdgasm using this keyboard, which was well worth the price that I paid.

I was playing last night and the Health fitness timer went off, which means I was in the middle of a BF3 gun fight and I lost the ability to move. I do not recall setting this and it took me a minute to realize what had happened. It’s a little weak on the indicator for these functions.

Also the keyboard came with a silly calendar which one assembles out of the instruction manual. Totally random.

Keyboard Specifications:

Number of Keys: US 108 Keys (ANSI)

Keyboard Color: Black

Keyboard Type: Mechanical – Using top quality Cherry MX Red keyswitches. Cherry MX Blue (clickier/louder) also available. Cherry MX switches are tested at more than 50 million strike life cycle.

Keycaps:

  • Standard – Laser Etched White Characters on Black ABS Plastic (UV Coated)
  • Black on Black – Laser Engraved Black Characters on Black ABS Plastic (UV Coated)All keyboards come with Mac compatible keycaps (4 pcs – command x2, alt/option x2).

Hotkeys: 27 (See full list of explanations on proprietary hotkeys and functions)

Anti-ghosting/N-Key Rollover: 6-key simultaneous input without ANY conflict/interference (Tested in both USB & Bluetooth mode Any key combinations).

Wired Interface: USB (Detachable cord)

Wireless Interface: Bluetooth 3.0 (Pairs and saves up to 10 devices)

Exclusive Technology: Multi-Pairing Bluetooth (10 devices) with switchable USB connection

Compatible Bluetooth Devices: Google Android 3/4 devices, and Apple iOS 4/5/6 (iPhones, iPads, etc.), Playstation 3

Compatible Computers: Windows XP / Vista   / Win7  / Win 8 / MAC OS 10 or higher

Batteries: AA x 2 pcs (not included)

Battery life: Approximately 1000+ hours. (3 hours/day x 365 days)

Accessories Included:   User Manual, USB Cable, Mobile device stand, keycaps for Mac (4pcs), keycap puller

This manufacturer tutorial page has all the details about the device and the OS specific function keys. Check it out… http://kbtalkingusa.com/kbtalking-pro-tutorial/

In conclusion, this is a gaming grade mechanical keyboard with wireless features able to connect up to 10 wireless devices and one wired device via USB. It kept up with my gaming needs with great wireless Bluetooth 3.0 performance.

As a side Note, I had a problem with Windows 7 and using the keyboard. Pressing the Capslock button would kick a game out of full screen mode. I tracked the problem down to BTTray.exe (the Bluetooth dongle), the on screen indicator for the keys being engaged and disengaged would kick the game out of full screen as it would render a visual notification on the desktop. This feature can be disabled via a registry edit.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > Widcomm > BTConfig > General > KeyIndication

Change the value of “KeyIndication” from “1″ to “0″

Reboot..

Problem fixed. This will only be an issue if there is a BT device connected to the PC. I use both wired and wireless on my PC.

Thanks for reading.