Friday, 24 August 2012 09:29

VMware beats Parallels to next-gen Mac virtualisation

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VMware Fusion 5, the latest version of the virtualisation software for OS X, is designed to take advantage of Mountain Lion and Windows 8.

Fusion 5 works with AirPlay Mirroring to stream applications to a connected TV, uses the Notification Center, and adds Windows applications to Launchpad.

It also takes advantage of the Retina display and USB 3.0, and provides better support for Macs fitted with 16GB or more of RAM.

VMware claims substantial performance improvements over Fusion 4 in terms of Windows 8 reboot time, Windows resume, battery life, and 3D graphics.

Among the 70 new features are improved virtual machine management, one-click snapshots, a Linux 3D graphics driver, and support for more operating systems including Windows Server 2012 and Ubuntu 12.04.

According to company officials, Fusion 5 has been optimised for Windows 8, and supports the basic, Pro and Enterprise.

Mountain Lion, OS X Mountain Lion Server, OS X Lion and OS X Lion Server can all be run in virtual machines for testing during development or to allow the continued use of software that only works with the older versions of OS X.

Apple changed its licence to permit the use of OS X in a VM starting with Lion, where previously only the server versions were authorised for use in virtualised environments.

VMware Fusion 5 costs $49.75. A free trial is available.

Parallels is expected to announce a new version of its virtualisation software (Parallels Desktop) within the next few weeks.


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Stephen Withers

Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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