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Honolulu_Johnny
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Dragon NaturallySpeaking Pro - Voice Recognition Software - Will It Work w/ VMWare Fusion (Mac)?

Aloha from Hawaii.

I'm considering purchase of a MacBook Pro and plan to use VMware Fusion to run both Mac OS and Windows. I'm hoping someone can answer this important question:

Whether Dragon NaturallySpeaking Pro v.9 (DNS Pro) - voice recognition software by Nuance (formerly ScanSoft) - will work with similar functionality as it does on a Windows PC? Specifically, will DNS Pro work via VMware Fusion on the Mac running Windows XP Pro OS, particularly in Unity mode, OR otherwise? More info below. . .

I'm disabled U.S. veteran, currently using DNS Pro on a PC running Windows XP Pro. I plan to purchase a MacBook Pro, with either 2.4GHz or 2.6GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor; 4GB RAM; and, 200GB Serial ATA Drive @ 7200 rpm, running OSX (10.5 - Leopard), and Windows XP Pro via VMware Fusion. Making this changeover is important, and due to cost implications, it's a financially serious question, so I really need to know that it's a technically feasible decision.

DNS Pro is Windows only app, and those familiar with adaptive technologies will be aware that it is the most sophisticated consumer voice recognition software available. Thus, please do not answer with info on other apps; e.g., iListen, ViaVoice, etc. I've tried these apps and they do not even come close to Dragon NaturallySpeaking Pro v.9. Rather, would sincerely appreciate just factual info on whether DNS Pro v.9 will work via VMware Fusion with the Mac running Windows XP Pro OS, particularly in Unity mode, OR otherwise?

I plan to use DNS Pro v.9 primarily for voice recognition/text dictation in all MS Office apps, e-mail, Internet browser, etc. Ideally, I would prefer to put DNS Pro to all of its other alternative uses and functions, which DNS Pro normally provides in Windows; e.g., voice recognition/text dictation in all other Windows apps, and voice-based commands for Windows OS. However, if I can be confident that VMware Fusion will provide at minimum the primary functions I need, it will allow me to make the switch.

Thank you very much,

Honolulu Johnny

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matthewls
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sorry to omit this information. No I am not using the internal microphone. Yes I am using a USB microphone, the Plantronics CS 50. Using a good microphone is key to getting good results with Dragon NaturallySpeaking whether you are using Windows natively or in VMware.

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matthewls
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Good news. I've been using DNS9.5 pro on my MacBook Pro (2.4Ghz) via VMWare, and it works well both in unity and every other vmware mode inside os x 10.5, including the bootcamp partition. The program works perfectly within windows e.g full screen or windowed windows VM sessions, so that you can use it as though you were running a native machine (e.g. "open microsoft word", etc.) as well as dictation. The program runs faster in native mode (bootcamp), but dictation is so smooth in VMWare that the difference is insignificant to me.

I've installed windows xp 32 and 64 bit editions in VMs, and DNS9.5 runs well in both. Boot camp requires 32 bit windows, so I've installed xp32 and DNS 9.5 there too. It's quite amazing, and makes the mac a delightful machine to use.

I use it all the time. Let me know if you'd like more information.

PS, I bought IListen to try a native mac dictation program, but gave up on it after a little while. It's relatively primitive compared to DNS 9....

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I think some people have reported problems with the internal microphone and Fusion, you may have to use a USB microphone. matthewls, are you using the internal mic?

rcardona2k
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Honolulu Johnny (love the name, btw - mahalo)

This thread has a bit more background on running Dragon Naturally Speaking in Fusion:

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matthewls
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sorry to omit this information. No I am not using the internal microphone. Yes I am using a USB microphone, the Plantronics CS 50. Using a good microphone is key to getting good results with Dragon NaturallySpeaking whether you are using Windows natively or in VMware.

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Honolulu_Johnny
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Aloha from Hawaii,

First, thank you all for the encouraging and helpful information.

In particular, mahalo nui loa ("thank you very much") to matthewls for your near immediate and comprehensive response, and the offer of additional information. Once I go through with the purchase, which is now a definite plan, I'm sure I'll be taking you up on your gracious offer.

Next, mahalo to etung for reminder RE: the microphone. As a relatively long-time user of DNS, I acknowledge that this is an essential detail.

To rcardona2k, thank you for the instructive thread, especially since it clarified feasibility of copying & importation of my speech files – very important. I suppose I should have initially searched the site harder; i.e., for “DNS”, but might not have hooked up with you all.

Again, thanks very much to you all.

HJ

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Neurosurg
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I am using DNS 9.5 on the XP Pro side of my MBP. It works great, but I use a Philips Speechmike Pro. The buttons on the speechmike are all working but the trackball does not. It is strange, because only the trackball works at the start of the session but Fusion thinks it is a mouse. I have to manually connect the USB device in VirtualMachine>Settings>USB to get it to work as a Speechmike, and as soon as I click OK, the trackball is no longer functional. Of course, until I connect, it works like a mouse but not a speechmike. Any suggestions on how to get both the speechmike function and the trackball function simultaneously? Thanks

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MacNephDoc
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Any updates to your experience with Naturally Speaking within a Windows VM? My environment(s) include a current generation MacBook Pro 2.8 GHz with 8 GB RAM/512 MB VRAM, Mac OS X 10.6.2, and Fusion 3.0.1 and a 2008 Dual Quad Core 2.8 GHz with 6 GB RAM and the same software versions.

Yesterday I looked at the medical version of MacSpeech (Mac application that uses Dragon's engine). The featureset was primitive, and it took the demonstrator longer to speak and correct a single paragraph than I would have consumed typing an entire page.

Any experience with the Bluetooth Mic that Dragon currently bundles with the latest version (10.1?),

Thanks so much,

Jim Robertson

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