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Cross-platforming to Mac

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nonnaci
KVRist
 
97 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Sat Mar 11, 2017 2:37 am Cross-platforming to Mac

I'm thinking of building for mac using a vmware/virtualizer on PC and was wondering if anyone had any experience or encountered any pitfalls along the way. Basic compilations in xcode seem to work but how are special instruction sets such as SSE handled? Emulated?
mystran
KVRAF
 
4461 posts since 11 Feb, 2006, from Helsinki, Finland

Postby mystran; Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:37 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

nonnaci wrote:I'm thinking of building for mac using a vmware/virtualizer on PC and was wondering if anyone had any experience or encountered any pitfalls along the way. Basic compilations in xcode seem to work but how are special instruction sets such as SSE handled? Emulated?


In general, when using a virtualizer like VMWare or VirtualBox, anything that works on your host CPU should work in the virtual environment exactly the same. Practically all application code will run in the virtualised environment directly on your CPU natively just like any other application code in a regular system (which is how virtualisation runs so fast compared to actual CPU emulation) and only stuff that interacts with privileged CPU or hardware state is emulated (to provide virtualisation, but this only really affects operating system code).

It is usually helpful to think of the virtualisation system more like an "outer operating system" that runs the guest OS as an application, rather than as an emulator; while they do a little bit of emulation with the guest OS code, application code running inside the guest OS is typically more or less completely unaffected... it runs just like any other regular application code.

ps. My personal experience from VMWare is from around 15 years ago, but I've been using VirtualBox, Xen and KVM (all of which differ slightly in the level of virtualisation) and they all work approximately the same: the CPU remains whatever it happens to be and application code is unaffected.
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No_Use
KVRAF
 
2107 posts since 13 Mar, 2004

Postby No_Use; Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:53 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

I'm using VirtualBox for building the Mac versions of my plugins (using WDL/iPlug).
No problems so far (except enocountering some pitfalls, but these are due to my unexperience, not using a VM).
My plugin projects where rather basic so far though.
stratum
KVRian
 
955 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:04 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

I couldn't get audio playback work on virtualbox running mavericks hosted on windows. There are community created drivers for older OS versions but nothing official.
~stratum~
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nonnaci
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97 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:22 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

Ok, this is a good news then. Was curious about the performance considering emulation overhead but that doesn't seem to be a problem outside non-graphics related tasks; can't seem to enable graphics hardware acceleration on VMWare workstation->Sierra. This may be a problem for WDL-OL as it uses LICE library although I haven't tested it at that point. That aside, which deployment target do you guys typically use. Earliest seems to be 10.6 for xcode 8.x.

Also, I get an intermittent scratchy effect with all sounds; playing around with buffer size and latency settings in the vmx file, as well as changing windows host sampling rate/bit depth helped a bit but couldn't remove all the artifacts.
stratum
KVRian
 
955 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:32 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

There is a pretty large 'hackintosh' community in the net and if you go there and ask these questions to them they can probably find a solution, but I'm not sure this is worth the hassle. I'd get a mac mini instead:)
~stratum~
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nonnaci
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97 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:42 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

stratum wrote:There is a pretty large 'hackintosh' community in the net and if you go there and ask these questions to them they can probably find a solution, but I'm not sure this is worth the hassle. I'd get a mac mini instead:)


I considered the mini but the specs are poor and they've discontinued it in 2014 so future support is a bit dubious. This seems also to apply to the rest of the low-to-mid tier macbooks so future-proofing along the mac-lineup may not workout. Looks like I'll continue with the VMware route for now as it produced some success with building and running sample WDL-OL projects.
stratum
KVRian
 
955 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:48 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

Future support for a mac is always dubious (my old macpro runs centos nowadays - nice subversion server:) ) and mac mini isn't really useful for anything other than porting and testing but the only other alternative on a budget would be to build an hackintosh. That doing so is illegal may be a problem when you need a mac developer account, at that moment they might validate your 'mac's serial number..
~stratum~
syntonica
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224 posts since 24 Sep, 2014

Postby syntonica; Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:09 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

nonnaci wrote:
I considered the mini but the specs are poor and they've discontinued it in 2014 so future support is a bit dubious.

Huh? The mini is still being sold new from a 1.4ghz i5 to a 3.0ghz i7.

A hackintosh may work for you, but maybe a MacBook with dual boot? ;)
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nonnaci
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97 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:18 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

syntonica wrote:
nonnaci wrote:
I considered the mini but the specs are poor and they've discontinued it in 2014 so future support is a bit dubious.

Huh? The mini is still being sold new from a 1.4ghz i5 to a 3.0ghz i7.

A hackintosh may work for you, but maybe a MacBook with dual boot? ;)


The latest 2014 high-end mac mini is still using a dual-core i-7, no idea from what intel generation ;(

Dual boot may be worth the investment for linux.
syntonica
KVRist
 
224 posts since 24 Sep, 2014

Postby syntonica; Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:53 pm Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

Apple accidentally put out a really good quad-core Mini. It sold so many, I think it cut into their other product sales in a big way as the next version of the mini had like not just slow processors, but silly slow processors. :lol: The minis were supposed to be gateway computers to attract you to the fruity side.

They now keep them strictly to duo cores and one of two generations behind on both the main chip and the co-GPU. They are using Haswell chips right now, unless they've updated recently.

That said, I got my 2.6ghz MacBook as a refurb direct for $800. I waited for a good deal, of course. It's not the speediest book out there, but does fine since I print my VSTi's once the arrangement is set, then I pile on the effects as needed.

Programming wise, with Xcode, which I still despise, it compiles my VSTi in just a couple of seconds, but that's just using Objective C++ with Cocoa headers. Not sure how it would do with nib files for graphics, probably not any worse, just less compiling, more linking.

You can run any Linux easily in Virtual Box and reboot directly into Windows with Bootcamp so you won't run into any issues with audio drivers there.

I found my dad a terrific deal on an i7 MacBook that smokes my computer :( as the original owner had replaced the hard drive with an SSD. So if you're patient, good deals can be had. I'm still using my 2007 MacBook running 10.6 and it's just getting to the point where it's ready for the knackers. It may get turned into a Chromebook, though to squeeze a couple more years of life out of it.

I have a point in there somewhere. :lol: I think it's, yeah, you may pay a few more bucks, but you can get several more years of life out them. Just don't buy the cheapo model. ;)
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nonnaci
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97 posts since 7 Feb, 2017

Postby nonnaci; Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:23 pm Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

syntonica wrote:Apple accidentally put out a really good quad-core Mini. It sold so many, I think it cut into their other product sales in a big way as the next version of the mini had like not just slow processors, but silly slow processors. :lol: The minis were supposed to be gateway computers to attract you to the fruity side.

Ah, explains those windows vs mac user TV ads from the 2000's :hihi:

That said, I got my 2.6ghz MacBook as a refurb direct for $800. I waited for a good deal, of course. It's not the speediest book out there, but does fine since I print my VSTi's once the arrangement is set, then I pile on the effects as needed.

Also going a similar route now with deal alerts but those prices... No wonder Apple protects its brand.
ghettosynth
KVRAF
 
7491 posts since 13 Oct, 2009

Postby ghettosynth; Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:06 pm Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

syntonica wrote:Apple accidentally put out a really good quad-core Mini. It sold so many, I think it cut into their other product sales in a big way as the next version of the mini had like not just slow processors, but silly slow processors. :lol: The minis were supposed to be gateway computers to attract you to the fruity side.


Yep, they were totally worth the extra dosh. I think mine was about nine bills and change a few years ago. I don't know if they continued them when they did the 4K update, but I know mine won't drive a 4K monitor without a lot of hassle but the next generation did.
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Guillaume Piolat
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74 posts since 21 Sep, 2015, from Grenoble

Postby Guillaume Piolat; Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:18 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

I bought a Mini and regretted it.
With 4gb memory it was completely unusuable, had to go to 16gb at the first OS upgrade.
Also bought an external screen in the end to stay mobile.
Poor value for the money.
stratum
KVRian
 
955 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:56 am Re: Cross-platforming to Mac

Poor value for the money.


I think the same is also true for any other apple product. If I add a 4K 50" LG display to a comparable P.C. the end result is still a lot cheaper than an iMac with 27" retina display. Go figure:)

I know local prices for macs are a bit expensive, but since all this stuff is imported, the end result is probably consistent with what happens in other parts of the world.
~stratum~

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