Anyway... I want to squeeze every last drop of performance out of Fusion running Windows 11 Pro.
My iMac 27-inch, 2017 configuration:
Processor: 3.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i5
Memory: 48 GB 2400 MHz DDR4
Graphics: Radeon Pro 580 8 GB
OS Version: Ventura 13.2.1 (22D68)
Hard Drive: Fusion 2TB
Now for my Windows setup, I mostly (99.9%) use it for playing desktop games (like all of the MicroSoft Casual Games).
My latest VM, I had configured it to use SCSI because of some of the things I've read on here, I used to use NVMe, but I'm not sure if they want to know how my current connection is through hardware or what I want to emulate in the VM. I'm not really NVMe because the Fusion drive has the small 256GB blade in there or about that size. SCSI hasn't been on a Mac since about the late 90's. So, I'd like to know what interface to use, which I think should be SATA, but like I said, I've read stuff about using SCSI over that.
Next, is my Display setup, I had it using 8GB in the VM, but I was still noticing lag, and if I switched to the Mac, my performance was really bad. Next to the 8GB option in the Display Settings, it says "Recommended", so that's what I went with. This morning I turned it down to 2GB and am getting the same performance, but it doesn't kill the Mac side like before.
Also on the Hard Disk settings, I've tried not splitting, Pre-allocating, etc, without seeing much difference in the performance.
I have the Processor set to use 2 processor cores, I have the RAM at 16,384MB (it says 4,096MB recommended).
I think that about covers the Fusion configuration.
On the Windows 11 side, I've read countless articles on Performance and 95% of them suggest not letting Windows handle the Pagefile System. But Microsoft says otherwsie.
I've also set everything to Performance (as far as power settings, display, etc. I've also turned off Restore points, turned indexing down to nothing). I also have my desktop set at 1920x1080 and 100% Scale. I sometimes go into Full Screen view. I also run Fusion as isolated as possible. I uninstalled practically every application that comes with Windows 11, plus I ran https://github.com/builtbybel/BloatyNosy, which seems to be a pretty good app. I have a solid color as my desktop background and just about everything I could think of to give up those precious CPU cycles.
Anyway, I'd like to know from the experts out there, what are the best settings for me. It's still a little laggy at times, but it shouldn't be. I don't mind re-installing Windows because I only play those games and don't do anything (except the occasional Web Browser) else.
It would be nice if there was a "Suggested Setup" or something like that for Fusion, taking a look at the Mac Hardware and the OS you want to Virtualize and go by that. VMWare should know better or I'd say pretty close to what MicroSoft knows about the OS after all these years. Even an online Web configurator would be wonderful. Also, VMWare giving suggestions on some of the vital Windows options/configurations/settings would be great.
If you made it to here, congrats! Thanks for reading.
So that machine is going to be marginal for running a Win 11 virtual machine - the host really wants 2 cores with Monterey or Ventura, and the guest definitely needs 2 cores at least. Two cores may run ok. For RAM, you don't say how much is in the host, but leave at least 4GB for the host OS itself.
NVME is the fastest - if you build a new Win11 VM, it'll be built that way automatically. Don't switch it.
There's no real difference in performance for disk splits or preallocation for a steady-state VM. One note though - if you have a fusion drive in the host, often MacOS will try to move the VM disk to the spinning disk, which is substantially slower.
For gaming, I use shadow.tech instead of VM's these days - far superior experience, especially if you have anything that needs 3d acceleration.
Good point, both have much lower requirements. Windows 7 is substantially lower, just make sure it's not online at all - but if it isn't, the performance will be far superior to Windows 11.
I will observe on the drive interface that VMware made a big deal about NVMe for performance, and this fellow's tests seem to bear that out - https://www.thomas-krenn.com/en/wiki/VMware_Performance_Comparison_SCSI_Controller_and_NVMe_Controll...
In practice I have switched to NVMe for the newer operating systems but I have not been empirical about checking my performance gains. In vSphere ESXi you lose the ability to hot add disk space with NVMe that you have with SCSI, but usually if you can hot add to a VM then you are giving up some amount of performance for the benefit.