VMware Fusion 4.1: Smarter, Better, Faster Than Ever

It’s been two months since we released VMware Fusion 4, and we have been thrilled with the response from our customers and the VMware Fusion community. We have also been listening carefully to how we can improve.

To that end, we’ve been working hard and are pleased to announce the release of VMware Fusion 4.1, available today as a free update for all VMware Fusion 4 customers.

Screen Shot 2011-11-16 at 11Here in the US we’re about to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. VMware Fusion 4.1 is our thanks to you, our users.

Here’s a short summary of the key features and improvements in VMware Fusion 4.1


Smart Full Screen

The number one feature request we saw from VMware Fusion 4 users was for native Lion full screen mode. But we knew we had to get it right; to work out all the corners cases and make sure it met all the same requirements as the old full screen and worked seamlessly with Mac OS X Lion. 

Here is how full screen works with VMware Fusion 4.1

  • The standard Lion full screen button is now used in virtual machine windows.



  • Like other full screen Lion applications, a VMware Fusion virtual machine will move to a new full screen space when using a single display.


  • If you are using multiple displays, VMware Fusion will intelligently decide whether to use a full screen space or not. If the virtual machine is configured to use all displays in full screen, it will move to a full screen space. If not, full screen will take the whole display in the current space. This allows working in Mac applications on one display while the virtual machine can make full use of the other.



  • The full menu bar is now accessible from full screen mode in both Snow Leopard and Lion. We added a short delay in showing the menu which allows users to access the top of the virtual machine screen, particularly useful when running Mac OS X Lion or Ubuntu in a virtual machine.

Screen Shot 2011-11-18 at 12

  • When working with multiple displays some users might prefer the optional full screen minibar. It provides quick access to common actions without leaving full screen mode. It takes minimal space on the screen and can even auto-hide.


The Return of automatically powering on favorite virtual machines

We removed this feature in VMware Fusion 4 and you really wanted it back. Virtual machines can now be powered on automatically when VMware Fusion starts. This can be set for each virtual machine under Settings > General.



Faster than ever!

We’ve worked top to bottom to make VMware Fusion even faster. A few of the improvements are:

Greatly improved graphics performance for Internet Explorer 9 with hardware accelerated graphics are up to 6x faster than VMware Fusion 4.

  • Improved rendering correctness in Solidworks 2012.
  • Improved graphics performance when using Mac OS X 10.7.2.
  • Improved animations for full screen mode, unity mode, library and snapshots.
  • Improved startup time with Windows 7 virtual machines.



OS X Lion as a guest just got better.


Improved Mac OS X Lion virtual machine support including smoother mouse movement and support for FileVault 2 when using Mac OS X 10.7.2 and later.


See the release notes for more details on other fixes:



Update to VMware Fusion 4.1 Today!

If you already own VMware Fusion 4, you will be prompted to install the free update to VMware Fusion 4.1 on your next launch or select Check for Updates from the VMware Fusion menu.

After downloading and installing VMware Fusion 4.1, make sure to update VMware Tools in the Virtual Machine.


Try VMware Fusion 4.1 Today!

If you would like to try VMware Fusion 4.1, click here to download a free 30-day trial.


Thanks for your support!

As we approach this Thanksgiving holiday in the US, we can’t thank you enough for your support and we hope you enjoy using VMware Fusion 4.1 as much as we did making it.


29 comments have been added so far

  1. I have upgraded and cannot resume my virtual machine which I suspended before the upgrade. I cannot even power it down. Please help.

  2. It says it is “Downloading VMware Fusion Core” and the bar is not showing any movement. Just now it showed a TINY part of dark grey in the gray bar; how long does it take to download with a decent Internet Connection? How big is the file? If it takes all day can I cancel and run at night?

  3. There’s a bug in full screen mode now – when you use Mission Control the Mac menu bar shows up over the full screen VM and wont’ go away no matter what.

  4. Thanks for the updates. I am glad to see you guys are listening. Now can we please have the abiltity to support 1 GB VRAM like Parallels 7 does?

  5. I’m a virtual box user, and have a customer which have the vmware server solution.
    I want to know if I prepare a CENTOS VM using fusion 4.1 my customer could import into their server environment later.
    Best Regards,
    Alessandro Oliveira

  6. But where is VMDKmounter? It’s possible for power users to force an install using Fusion 3 and OSXFuse, so it’s inexcusable that you aren’t including it as part of the default.

  7. VMware Updater service not responding – fails.
    Pinging ueip.vmware.com shows its down.
    Can’t update…. any advice?

  8. Set up virtual Mac OSX 10.6 machine! But I’ve got no sound… No output devices in System Preferences and no settings in VMWare Tools. Any ideas?

  9. “Like other full screen Lion applications, a VMware Fusion virtual machine will move to a new full screen space when using a single display”
    Well this just screws me up big time. for years I have been using VMWare Fusion in full screen mode in an assigned space. I use ctrl+(number) to switch between spaces quickly as I work. Now I can’t do that. This totally breaks my work flow.

  10. – I check for updates ..
    – I start 4.1 download
    (download progress bar completes)
    – request that I suspend
    progress bar dissapears
    – I suspend
    when I launch again tells me, “Fusion 4.1 is now available
    endless loop!

  11. I just updated and WTF. As with nearly every update, it causes the VMs to lose the ability to auto adjust their screen resolution. It is a PAIN in the B. Hours lost fiddling to try and recover. Some VMs have to be thrown away. Geez people.

  12. I know that Apple decided that fullscreen mode should work the way it does in Lion, but I’ve been used to for years to have all my primary VM (Win7) on the second space (also with spaces on Leopard and Snow Leopard), now with Lion and Fusion 4.1 full screen will create a space at the end (number 5 for me) which cannot be directly address with a hot-key.
    It would be nice if you could make it user selectable if one wants to use “Lion” full screen mode, or just fullscreen….

  13. Does this mean that it can no longer use dual screens at the same time (ie. Windows using both monitors)? It looks like it’s only single screen no matter what the Smart Full Screen setting is. (I have not yet upgraded to Lion).

  14. I agree with others. I’ve been using Fusion for years and have become used to hot keying ^2 to get to my full screen Linux space and ^1,3,4, etc. to get to another space. The new Mission Control, only, interface forces me to go to it, select the Fusion space. Thankfully, I can get back to Lion by hot keying to another space.

  15. Although I find these changes okay on my Lion machine, I, too find the inability to run Fusion in a space annoying. I alternated with Alt+1…Alt+2 etc, and now have to resort to swiping.
    But even worse… I use Fusion on Snow Leopard on my work machine, because we haven’t approved Lion yet for our network because of security concerns. Full screen mode in Snow Leopard is awful. Every time I try to access a title bar to drag a Windows app, the delay on the Mac menu bar is too short, and I wind up highlighting and selecting a menu item. The new mini bar is a total waste: there’s no minimize now, because it’s assuming I’m using Lion. And I can’t press Command+M to minimize, because I have my Command key remapped in my Windows environment to be “Control”, so Command+M is really triggering Control+M in the windows environment.
    This really sucks VMWare… if you’re going to change or takeaway behavior, either explain the new method of doing it, or provide a toggle to change it back. Not being able to minimize quickly from full-screen Windows and switch back to OS X is a royal pain. I don’t want to see the OS X menu bar at all when I’m working in the Windows environment. Give me the option to disable that completely. Please.

  16. Thanks to everyone for your feedback in this thread. To address a couple of the most popular requests directly:
    Applications can be assigned to spaces and spaces to shortcut keys under Lion as described here:
    The full screen menu drop-down delay can be adjusted to your preference as described here:
    The full screen menu can be disabled completed using Cmd-Shift-M (View > Hide Menu Bar in Full Screen)
    A VM can use all displays by enabling View > Use All Displays in Full Screen. This requires VMware Tools to be installed and up-to-date and a relatively new version of MS Windows, otherwise the display will be mirrored.

  17. I still didn’t manage to assign a hot key (shortcut) which should take me directly to vmware fusion space. I couldn’t assign either the vmware fullscreen to a certain desktop(space)…
    May be you coul help.
    Thank you.

  18. I recently created a Snow Leopard non-server VM with Fusion 4 and it ran fine. Today one of my team members tried to do the same with Fusion 4.1.1 and the VM won’t run. He gets this error:
    The guest operating system is not Mac OS X Server.
    I tried to create another 10.6 VM and got the same error. I then tried to run my original 10.6 VM and got the same error as above.
    I updated to 4.1.1 after creating the original VM so that appears to have broken it. Is this a bug or a feature? Did Apple serve a cease and desist order after Fusion 4 was released?
    Please advise.

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