VMware Fusion Beta 4 is available

Downloading VMware Fusion Beta 4VMware have released the latest beta of Fusion, their virtualisation offering for OS X. I’ve been using this on Kinky (my “Blackbook”) since it came out, and each release gets better and better: plenty of speed now, and beta 4 offers some familiar-sounding functionality to boot:

Unity: Break down the barriers between Windows and Mac OS X leaving the Windows desktop and Start menu behind. Run Windows XP applications intertwined with your favorite Mac applications and switch between any application with command-tab or Exposé. Use the VMware Fusion Launch palette to launch Windows applications eliminating the Start menu and save your favorite Windows applications to the Mac OS X Dock. Even use Mac keyboard commands to cut, copy, and paste between Windows and Mac applications.

I use VMware a lot: I do all my DominoWiki coding in Notes 7 running within VMware, and that really gives me the best of both worlds—for example, HTML comp-ing in Coda, then a quick drag-n-drop of stylesheet and / or Javascript data back into Windoze under VMware. It’s really very easy, and Windows performance on the Mac, whilst OS X is also in residence (together with a boatload of apps) is excellent. Virtualisation has come a long way since the creaky emulators of yore eh!

VMware are now gearing up for a v1.0 launch, with some pretty decent pricing: eighty bucks for the full kit-and-caboodle, half-price (for a limited time) for beta testers. Got to be worth a closer look wouldn’t you say?

Read more: VMware Fusion.


  1. We're running Parallels at home on a MacBook with roughly the same config as yours. Performance is great. And the 3.0 release is imminent which has a bunch of new features including 3D support. I've considered giving Fusion a try but it's not clear that there's any substantial advantage over Parallels.Bob Congdon#
  2. To be honest Bob, I don’t think there is an advantage as such (although VMware included better USB / iSight support from the get-go), its just what you’re used-to / what you’ve tried really. Having the choice is great though, after years of just VirtualPC.Ben Poole#
  3. USB support in Parallels is very good. I think it was spotty in earlier builds. VirtualPC on Mac OS had two main challenges: emulating x86 in software and hardware that didn't support virtualization. Virtual PC on x86 (non-Mac) works great -- as does VMWare.Bob Congdon#
  4. Hi

    I have been using Parallels for quite a while now but switched to VMWare Beta 4 a couple of day ago. I find "Unity" superior to "Coherence" - the option of selecting the Windows program from the menu just seems right to me. The shadowing etc. of the Windows apps fits better into the Mac world ;o)

    The main reason I converted was that we use VMWare at work and now I can setup a server etc. at home (I have a home office that I use about 3 days a week) and then just copy it at work - much better.

    Just my 2c

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