Netflix Online on the Mac: View on Demand Streaming with VMware Fusion

netflix[7] I’ve recently been introduced to the wonder that is Netflix, and have been having a great time playing around with my queue, and so forth thinking about what movie I want to watch next, and so on.

But the other day, I went to check out Netflix’s “Watch Instantly” product, which lets Netflix customers watch videos on demand, right from their computer.

I was browsing around in Firefox 3 on my Mac at the time, and as such, ran into the oft talked about issue that Netflix online doesn’t support  Mac browsers. 

Luckily, I happen to know a thing or two about running Windows on the Mac with VMware Fusion, so I just popped into my Windows XP demo VM, and proceeded to go through the installation process to see what all our users out there in VMware Fusion land would have to do in order to watch Netflix on their Mac. 

Turns out, in about five minutes, after doing some updates to Windows Media Player, and rebooting my VM, I was on my way.

And I just happened to be running screen capturing software the whole time, so I could cut it into the demo you see here.

So, it appears Netflix can run on a Mac, after all, and without rebooting even! Enjoy!


8 comments have been added so far

  1. What Mac system are you running this on?
    When I run Netflix in Fusion I can only run it in Full Screen mode with regular framerates. If I run it in Unity mode the video lags considerably. Yet in the video above you show it running in Unity mode.
    I have an iMac 2.8GHZ with a NVIDIA 8800 GS card running Leopard and Fusion is running my boot camp partition.

  2. When I tried on my 24″ core 2 duo iMac, I found a second or two lag between audio and video which made it unwatchable. I’m hoping Fusion 2.0 fixes this.

  3. I tried this many moons ago with Parallels, and now that I’ve switched to VMWare Fusion (having heard rumours that it had better graphics support) it’s got the same problems that Parallels had.
    1) If you want to watch Full Screen you have to have IE Full Screen to start with, otherwise part of the image ends up cropped away (VMWare actually does much better than Parallels on this front).
    2) There is occasional lag and shoddy framerate.
    3) There is horizontal video tear.
    Neither has any audio/video synching delay.
    Any hints as to how to avoid this? I’d really like to be able to watch full screen on my TV. I don’t care so much about absolute video quality, but much more about things that can totally ruin the experience like jitter and tear.
    Please mail me if you do reply with a solution – I don’t know that I’ll be automatically notified by this comment system.
    Keep up the great work with Fusion!

  4. Hi people,
    Well there is service in netflix in which we can place the order by the post, but I think this streaming service is more reliable and user friendly.

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