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VMware Fusion: Cross Platform Developer’s Delight

Sol Young has a great post on using VMware Fusion on a Mac to provide the best of all worlds for cross-platform development.

In this case, Sol’s rig consists of a MacBook Pro with XCode installed, and VMware Fusion hosting both a primary development virtual machine with Visual Studio installed, and a handful of other Windows virtual machines (XP Home, XP Pro, Vista, etc. etc,) for doing regression testing of built apps.

Sol does a great job of doing a quick intro of how VMware Fusion can be used above and beyond just letting you run Windows on a Mac, but can even help turn your Mac into a serious development platform for Windows applications. 

Sounds funny to the ear at first, but Sol, and lots of other users are doing just that, using VMware Fusion to take full advantage of their great Mac hardware, while using the power of virtualization to do things like snapshot and rollback to allow a clean base state for testing.  Not to menion: finally getting Visual Studio for Mac!

Great post Sol!


5 comments have been added so far

  1. Fantastic stuff….any possibility we’ll see Workstation level snapshots in Fusion? (That’s about the only thing that has considering Workstation on a Mac Pro vs. Fusion….I just can’t see giving up multiple snapshots and clones from snapshots.)

  2. I’ve tried this workflow (as it’s one I would LOVE to use), but Visual Studio (both 2005 and 2008) seems incapable of reliably building projects that live in a Shared Folder (lots of bogus errors)… is there a trick to getting this to work?

  3. I’m having horrific problems with Visual Studio 2008 running on Fusion 3.0. I have Visual Studio 2008 installed on a Windows Vista Enterprise virtual machine running on Fusion 3.0 on my unibody MacBook Pro which is running Snow Leopard. Anyway, whenever I try to add a reference (such as a dll) to a Visual Studio 2008 project, I get the following error: “A reference to ‘C:\Users\username\Documents\Visual Studio 2008\Projects\MyProjectName\MyProjectName\bin\my.dll’ could not be added. Please make sure that the file is accessible, and that it is a valid assembly or COM component.”
    Now, this has got to do with the file system and “shared folder” settings but it happens whether I have shared folders enabled or not. It also happens when I place the dlls to be added to my project on the actual virtual machine instead of on the Mac’s drive. The name of the shared folder is (\\vmware-host) (Z:) but it also happens if the share is called (\\.host)(Z:)
    Has anyone encountered this issue as well? This bug actually prevents me from using Visual Studio 2008 for any coding projects which involve adding a reference to the project, and that will probably happen 90% of the time which, of course, blocks almost all developers from being able to use Visual Studio on Fusion 3.0.

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