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Monthly Archives: May 2009

Entrepreneur: Windows or Mac? You Don’t Have to Choose…

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Entrepreneur is an amazing magazine and online resource with great ideas to help you grow your small or medium sized business.

If you are a business owner,  you know that every dollar you spend matters and that is especially true when choosing technology products. You want to choose proven technology products that are easy to use and trouble free in order to focus on what matters to you most, growing your business.

Amanda Kooser in May 2009 issue of Entrepreneur wanted to run Windows on her Mac, but she thought it was too be good to true and was expecting the worst.

Fortunately, Amanda chose VMware Fusion and “it went smoothly”. Amanda found “sharing data is a no brainer“ and that she “…had all my usual Windows applications in action in no time.”

If you want to move to the Mac, but were afraid of losing specialized Windows apps for your business , you don’t have to choose when using VMware Fusion.  Amanda summarizes it best on why entrepreneurs need VMware Fusion.

 

Which entrepreneurs will want this? New Mac users with legacy Windows programs they can’t give up are an obvious audience. Me? I love both Mac and Windows for different reasons and different applications. Fusion means not having to choose a favorite child

 

If you are a small business owner that wants to integrate Macs into your business but still need Windows applications,  VMware Fusion makes it simple to standardize on the Mac while not having to spend additional money on a second PC just to run Windows apps you need. With VMware Fusion, you don’t have to choose!

A Message to VMware Fusion Users with Macs that have ATI Graphics Cards about Apple’s Mac OS X Update 10.5.7

Picture 1 Apple released the Mac OS X 10.5.7 Update yesterday, and I know many of you are eager to try it out. However, if your Mac has an ATI graphics card (MacPro or iMac), and you rely on VMware Fusion's 3D Acceleration feature to run either Windows games or other Windows 3D applications in your virtual machines, we recommend that you do not upgrade your Mac to 10.5.7.

We are making this recommendation because the ATI driver in Mac OS X 10.5.7 breaks the 3D acceleration feature in VMware Fusion. You will likely see issues ranging from slow performance, to incorrect rendering, and even crashes, when you run your 3D applications in a Windows virtual machine on Mac OS X 10.5.7.

Both Apple and ATI are aware of this problem and are working to correct it in a future software update. In the meantime, if you have an ATI graphics card in your Mac and need VMware Fusion's 3D features to work, we recommend that you do not upgrade to Mac OS X 10.5.7.

Stay tuned to the Team Fusion blog and follow us on Twitter for the latest updates.

Update May-14: many of you asked this so I thought I would clarify. The ATI driver issue only affects 3D functionality in VMware Fusion. If your Windows applications do not need 3D, it will run just fine under VMware Fusion on Mac OS X 10.5.7. If you are sure you do not need 3D, you can turn off 3D Acceleration in Virtual Machine Settings and upgrade to 10.5.7. To turn off 3D in Fusion:

  1. Power off your Virtual Machine
  2. Select "Settings" under Virtual Machine menu
  3. In the Settings window, click "Display"
  4. Uncheck "Accelerate 3D Graphics"

Windows 7 on Mac with VMware Fusion: A Practical Guide Revisited

win7 There has been a lot of buzz flying around Windows 7 since its public beta release earlier this year. Team Fusion released a Practical Guide to Windows 7 on Mac with VMware Fusion when the Windows 7 public beta was released earlier and lots of users took advantage of the opportunity to check out the forthcoming version of Windows.

In fact, I have been running my day to day work life out of a Windows 7 Public Beta VM using Mirrored Folders and Shared Applications since the beta was released and it has been working really well with a couple of known caveats that we mentioned at the time.

Today, Microsoft released a public release candidate of Windows 7. We have installed Windows 7 RC on a number of Macs from a first generation MacBook Air to a higher end MacBook Pro and Windows 7 RC is really responsive with the default VMware Fusion settings on all Macs we have tried.

Personally, I am excited to see the improvements in my day to day use of Windows 7 at work. More important, I am excited that the Windows 7 Release Candidate is the easiest way for you to try out Windows on your Mac for FREE (at least until the beta expires). That’s right, you can download Windows 7 Release Candidate through July 1st and it’s free to use until it expires on June 1, 2010.

While VMware Fusion won’t formally support Windows 7 until it is released later this year, the Windows 7 Release Candidate works really well in VMware Fusion 2.0.4 based on our initial testing.

Getting Up and Running with Windows 7 in VMware Fusion

Windows 7 Release Candidate, both 32-bit and 64-bit editions, is not officially supported with VMware Fusion 2 today, but the VMware Fusion features you rely upon including Drag and Drop, Unity, Shared Applications, and more all seem to work really well so far.

The caveats we mentioned for the Windows 7 Public Beta around 3D, Shared Folders, and Mirrored Folders are NO longer an issue with the Windows 7 Release Candidate.

We plan to fully support Windows 7 after it is officially released with a future release of VMware Fusion.

See below for some guidance on how to set things up for best success.

NOTE: If you have an existing Windows 7 Beta virtual machine or Windows XP virtual machine, you CANNOT upgrade them to Windows 7 RC according to Microsoft. You will need to create a new Windows 7 RC virtual machine.

Download the Windows 7 Release Candidate

First, download the Windows 7 Release Candidate ISO from Microsoft’s Windows 7 site and get yourself a release candidate product key. You can use 32-bit or 64-bit, but the world is moving to 64-bit for better performance, so this example will assume you are using the 64-bit edition of Windows 7. Just download the Windows 7 ISO to your desktop.

Creating Your Windows 7 Virtual Machine

First, you’ll create a new virtual machine, the same as you’ve done before via “File>New”:

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Next, we’re going to point the New Virtual Machine Assistant at the Windows 7 Release Candidate ISO you just downloaded. Typically, if you just insert a Windows install disk, VMware Fusion automatically recognizes what OS is in it, but in this case, we have to point it at the ISO.

Click “Continue without disk.”

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Then, choose “Use operating system installation disk image file”:

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Just select the ISO in the dialog that pops up:

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Windows Easy Install will parse the disk image as Windows Vista (either 32 or 64 bit, depending on which ISO you downloaded). Accept the Vista default option.

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Next, enter the serial key that was provided to you by Microsoft, and paste it into the Windows Product Key entry in Windows Easy Install.

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At this point, you should see your final configuration setup, with 1 GB of RAM assigned, and a virtual hard disk that will expand up to 40GB (but will start much smaller). Click “Finish.”

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Once you hit “Finish,” Windows Easy Install will be off and running, installing Windows 7. You’ll see some reboots, and VMware Tools will install automatically.

After that’s all finished, you should be able to play around with Windows 7 as you would expect.

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While the Windows 7 Release Candidate works well in our limited testing so far, it is not a supported configuration today, so there could be bugs you encounter until we have full support in a future VMware Fusion release with the final shipping Windows 7 software.

Tweaking Windows 7 for the Best Experience

Securing Windows

One of the most used VMware Fusion features is Unity 2.0, which includes Mirrored Folders so that Windows applications work like Mac apps and they work with your existing files and folders stored in your Mac

Twitter Relies on the Mac and VMware Fusion

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Here on the VMware Fusion team, we are avid users and huge fans of Twitter. We rely on Twitter to communicate to our users who want to see what we are thinking about or who want to ask us quick questions about how to get the most of out VMware Fusion.

Apple posted a customer profile of Twitter that talks about how the Twitter team relies on the Mac to be their most productive and how they rely on VMware Fusion to make sure Twitter also works well for Windows users.

Twitter design teams run site testing by flipping between Safari and Firefox, and if they want to test on Windows, they fire up a virtual machine running VMware on their Mac systems.

 

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We are glad that VMware Fusion helps the Twitter team be more productive and maximize their Mac, while still running Windows to make sure things work well for everyone.

If you aren’t following us already, make sure to follow VMware Fusion on Twitter.