Mac user on Windows version

I’m a long time SketchUp user on the Mac. I teach a class in SketchUp and a few students now run the Windows version (with Bootcamp on a Mac), and I get flustered because I’m just not experience with the Windows version. Any tips or cheat sheets that might help?

One specific question I couldn’t figure out on the spot: I’m used to having multiple SU files open at the same time on a Mac and copy-paste between them. Does Windows not support multiple SU models open at the same time?

Also, I have Windows 10 in Parallels on my Mac. Does my SU Pro license allow me to install the Windows version on my machine as well. That way I could spend some time and learn it a little better.

Yeah, because they haven’t put much effort into maintaining consistency between the Windows and Mac SketchUp GUIs it can be confusing switching from one to the other. Other than just using the other version, I don’t know of any easy way to adapt. The two greatest differences I’ve encountered are the toolbar systems (especially the tray system introduced in WIndows SU 2016) and the materials editor (the Windows version is much more useable IMHO).

To answer your specific questions:

Windows SU is single-document-interface. This means that each running instance of SketchUp can have only one model open. However, you can launch multiple instances of SketchUp and open a different model in each one. Then you can cut and paste between them because it goes via the system’s cut buffer.

I have SU Pro installed and running under Parallels Windows 7 on my Mac. I don’t know whether Windows 10 will add any issues. My interpretation of the License (I’m not a lawyer) is that the Parallels virtual machine is equivalent to a second computer and is allowed so long as you don’t run both installations of SU at the same time.

Just on the last point, you could install Make under Parallels. Most of the things you might want to test, like copy and paste for example, should be the same with Make.

I just tried that, and the not intuitive answer to your first question is that you can double click on the SketchUp icon again, and another copy of SketchUp gets run. You can copy and paste between the different windows, though you will have a little fight with Maximize to get the windows arranged like you see on Mac. It seems there can only be one model window for each copy of SketchUp that is running.

Interesting I didn’t know about running multiple instances in Windows.

The materials palette also tripped my up. More useable? I’ll have to look at it.

Yes, my initial thought was just to install Make. Actually, that’s what the students are using anyway, come to think of it.

To clarify, this is typical of many Windows programs, not just SketchUp. Mac is different - you have to go to extra lengths to open a second instance of a program instead of a second document within the current instance.

I’m wondering if that’s why Photoshop has a tabbed interface for multiple documents/windows even on a Mac, just to accommodate Windows?

Tabs are just a convenient way to switch rapidly between multiple documents with or without having multiple windows open on the screen at the same time. There are Mac programs that use tabs when the most common viewing practice is via a single window rather than multiple windows (e.g. Safari). The difference is that on Windows most programs can only have a single window whereas on Mac most programs open multiple windows, one per document.

The current macOS includes a tab approach for having multiple documents in one window. It works well with SketchUp.

There’s a long history of window docking, that involved law suits between MacroMedia and Adobe. That was solved when Adobe acquired MacroMedia.

But yes, I’m sure Adobe work that way so that they can develop things in a cross platform way. But on Mac you can tear off Photoshop document windows, if you want them to be separate.

for evaluation purposes or if you don’t wanna buy something Oracles free ‘VirtualBox’ may be an alternative option.

offic. MS Windows Downloads.

Well, well, what do you know? SU won’t run under Parallels! You get the following launch error from SU:

  • Your “Parallels using NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M OpenGL Engine” graphics card’s OpenGL version is 2.1. SketchUp requires a graphics card that supports OpenGL 3.0 or better.

This is the same graphics card used to run SU on my native MacOS, but the limitation seems to be Parallels itself with this knowledge base article. I guess Parallels won’t support OpenGL greater than 2.1 no matter what your hardware can do.

My students using SU in windows were doing so with Windows 10 in Bootcamp, so it obviously works there. Boot camp requires you to reboot your machine as a Windows machine or a Mac without the ability to jump back and forth the way you can with Parallels.

This is a known limitation of Parallels. Several of us have contacted them about updating their OpenGL driver support, but so far no change… I am told that VMWare does not have this limitation but I don’t have it (only Parallels) so I can’t confirm that. Also, some people have reported success using Virtual Box. Again, I don’t use it so I can’t confirm.

The key difference between these products and Bootcamp is that they are Virtual Machines, meaning that the product simulates an independent suite of hardware atop the OS X system. Because they do not actually run directly on the hardware, apps in a VM are stuck with whatever the VM implements.

Bootcamp literally boots your system using a different operating system. Doing so without a VM became possible when Apple adopted standard Intel architecture that the other OS’s support.

Yes, I just read the specs on VMWare Fusion and it claims OpenGL 3.3 support, and advertises itself as good for gamers, so you would expect good graphics support if that claim is valid. I had a hard time deciding between Parallels and Fusion when I got the former earlier this year. This issue wasn’t on my radar till I ran into it in practice. Parallels does run Forte® Software by Weyerhaeuser, which originally prompted me to get a VM solution, but I guess I didn’t make the optimal choice.

Parallels just got updated to version 13. It still is just OpenGL 2.1.