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Author Archives: David Liu

VMware Fusion 2.0.6 Update Now Available

Fusion We are pleased to announce our latest maintenance release of VMware Fusion 2. VMware Fusion 2.0.6 is a free update for all VMware Fusion 1.x and VMware Fusion 2.x users. You can download the bits here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.6 fixes multiple issues when running VMware Fusion 2.0.x on Mac OS X Snow Leopard (32-bit kernel mode), including:

  • Mouse losing focus on Snow Leopard hosts
  • Driverless printing fails after an upgrade install of Leopard or Snow Leopard Software Update
  • VMware Fusion 2 claims to be unlicensed after upgrading to Snow Leopard
  • Slow 3D graphics on Macs with NVIDIA graphics cards running Snow Leopard

And much more! Read the Release Notes for more details.

Enjoy the new bits!

Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 Series: Find a Missing Pointer

Cover_vmware_fusion_2 The Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 blog series is back! This week, we are going to talk about finding a missing mouse pointer. If you are new to the series, the ebook Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 by Joe Kissell, teaches you all the fundamentals of VMware Fusion 2, as well as tips and tricks to get the most out of running Windows on your Mac.

Here is this week's excerpt from Joe Kissell's new book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2:

Find a Missing Pointer

In a few of situations, you may find yourself without a pointer—you move the mouse but nothing shows up, either in Windows or in Mac OS X. Don’t panic. It’s likely one of three issues:

•    First, during part of the time that Windows is starting up, shutting down, suspending, or resuming, the VMware Tools drivers aren’t active, so Fusion can’t perform its usual trick of handing off the pointer between Mac and Windows. In most cases, if you wait a minute, it’ll come back. If it doesn’t—or if you can’t wait—press Command-Control to release the pointer from the virtual machine’s control and hand it to Mac OS X.

•    Second, in rare cases, your pointer may move just fine in Mac OS X, but when you move it over the virtual machine window, the Windows pointer doesn’t move (or doesn’t appear at all). If this happens, choose Virtual Machine > Grab Input, which jogs Fusion into attaching mouse input to the virtual machine.

•    Third, Fusion may lock your pointer to the virtual machine window to make a game work correctly. If this happens, you won’t see your Mac pointer even when you try to move outside the window. If this happens at an inappropriate time, see the section “General Preferences” for the gaming-related settings to change.


To learn more about the book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2, or buy it, click here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.5 Update Now Available

Fusion We are pleased to announce our latest maintenance release of VMware Fusion 2. VMware Fusion 2.0.5 is a free update for all VMware Fusion 1.x and VMware Fusion 2.x users. You can download the bits here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.5 fixes over 80 bugs and comes with the following enhancements:

Snow Leopard Host!

For you adventurous types who run Apple's latest Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard seed on your Mac, VMware Fusion 2.0.5 runs on your machines. Only 32-bit kernel is supported at this time. And because Snow Leopard is a pre-release operating system, VMware Fusion's Snow Leopard support is currently experimental.

Better Mac OS X Guest Support

We provided experimental support for Mac OS X 10.6 Server (Snow Leopard) as a guest operating system starting in VMware Fusion 2.0.3, and in 2.0.5, this support is extended to include the latest Snow Leopard seed (32-bit kernel only). We also worked with Apple to fix an issue with installing Snow Leopard guest on Macs with the powerful Intel Nehalem processors. Both Mac OS X 10.5 and 10.6 run well in virtual machines on Mac Pros and Xserves with Nehalem processors.

Ubuntu 9.04 "
Jaunty Jackalope" Support

Of course, we have not forgotten those of you Linux fans. VMware Fusion 2.0.5 supports Ubuntu 9.04 as a guest operating system out of box, with pre-built modules and Easy Install. You no longer have to apply tricks like this.

Lower Idle CPU Usage

The VMware Fusion team is committed to providing a very stable and highly performing virtualization environment on the Mac. In this maintenance release, we reduced CPU usage when a virtual machine is idle under VMware Fusion.

For all the details of what VMware Fusion 2.05 has to offer, read the release notes.

What about the ATI Graphics Issue on Mac OS X 10.5.7?

I posted a note last month warning you about the problematic ATI drivers in Mac OS X 10.5.7. Unfortunately, the issue still exists. But be assured that we are following up with Apple and ATI on a resolution and we will update the blog when we have any change in status.

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"

Ubuntu 9.04 “Jaunty Jackalope” on VMware Fusion 2

Images Ubuntu 9.04, otherwise known as "Jaunty Jackalope", was released last week, and the geek in me was eager to try it out. So I grabbed the Ubuntu 9.04 ISO image and created a new virtual machine with it in VMware Fusion 2.0.4. And I am happy to report that with a couple of tweaks, things work pretty well today.

Here are the steps I took to get a working Ubuntu 9.04 virtual machine:

1) Download the Ubuntu 9.04 x86 Desktop CD image.

2) In VMware Fusion 2.0.4, use the New Virtual Machine Assistant (File -> New), and point it at the Ubuntu CD image file.
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3) Follow the instructions in the New Virtual Machine Assistant, and select Easy Install. Since VMware Fusion 2.0.4 was released before the Ubuntu 9.04 release, it does not include Pre-Built Kernel Modules for Ubuntu 9.04. As a result, there are a couple of issues with VMware Tools that I will address further down, but Easy Install is still a good place to start – it will still get a lot done during the initial setup.
Picture 4  
4) Finish the New Virtual Machine Assistant, and let Ubuntu install. Once the Ubuntu virtual machine finishes installing and then boots up, you will have a working Ubuntu 9.04 virtual machine with a couple of minor issues that we can work around.

First, you will immediately notice that you cannot move your mouse cursor outside of your virtual machine window. You will need to use key combo CTRL+CMD to do that. This is because the vmmouse driver, a VMware mouse driver that enables the mouse ungrab feature, was not installed by X.org included with Ubuntu. This can be easily fixed by running command "sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-input-vmmouse" in a terminal window in the Ubuntu virtual machine:
Picture 5

After reboot, you should be able to mouse in and out of the virtual machine window without the ungrab key combo.

Second, shared folders do not work. The kernel module vmhgfs that powers the shared folder feature, failed to compile during the VMware Tools install. The failure is due to a kernel API change in the new Linux kernel that ships with Ubuntu 9.04. A small source code change is required to fix this. If you don't mind getting your hands dirty a bit, check out this VMware Fusion forum post where some VMware Fusion users discuss how to do this. (Credit: the original workaround for this was posted by Laptopbisnis in their blog).

After making these two small changes, all the great features you have come to expect with Linux virtual machines in VMware Fusion now work, including file drag and drop, text copy and paste, automatic screen resize, shared folders, and even Unity.

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While VMware Fusion 2.0.4 does not support Ubuntu 9.04 guests because Ubuntu 9.04 came out after VMware Fusion, hopefully this post will get you up and running with the "Jaunty Jackalope" right away, until we ship official Ubuntu 9.04 support in a future VMware Fusion release.

Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 Series: Remap Mouse Buttons

Cover_vmware_fusion_2 In this week's installment of our Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 blog series,
we are going to talk about remapping your mouse buttons. If you are new to the series, the ebook Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 by Joe Kissell, teaches you all the fundamentals of VMware Fusion 2, as well as tips and tricks to get the most out of running Windows on your Mac.

Here is this week's excerpt from Joe Kissell's new book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2:

Remap Mouse Buttons

Some Mac mice have a single button, but Windows requires at least two, and sometimes three, buttons. If you have a multi-button mouse—or trackball—attached to your Mac, it will most likely work correctly in a Windows virtual machine without any further configuration. However, if your mouse has fewer buttons than you need, Fusion can step in to provide alternative ways of clicking.

By default, Fusion lets you emulate a right-click (also known as a secondary button) by holding down the Control key while clicking. (On a Mac laptop, you have other options as well; see the section “Right-Clicking” for details.) To get a “button 3” response, hold down the Command key while clicking.

If you want to change either of these settings, do this:

1.    Choose VMware Fusion > Preferences, click the Keyboard & Mouse button in the toolbar, and then click Mouse Shortcuts.
Picture 1
2.    Double-click the setting you want to change—for example, to change which shortcut you use to simulate the secondary button, double-click Secondary Button.
Picture 2  
3.    In the dialog that appears, select the modifier key(s) and mouse button you want to use. Then click OK.


To learn more about the book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2, or buy it, click here.

Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 Series: Look Inside a Virtual Machine

Cover_vmware_fusion_2 In this week's installment of our Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 blog series,
we are going to talk about how your
virtual machine is stored on your Mac. If you are new to the series, the ebook Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 by Joe Kissell, teaches you all the fundamentals of VMware Fusion 2, as well as tips and tricks to get the most out of running Windows on your Mac.

Here is this week's excerpt from Joe Kissell's new book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2:

Look inside a Virtual Machine

In Fusion, a virtual machine includes a number of components: settings files, the file(s) constituting the virtual disk image(s), any snapshots you’ve taken manually or using AutoProtect, log files, and more. All these files are packaged in a special format called a bundle, which looks like a single file in the Finder but which is really a folder in disguise.
Picture 1
To see the contents of a virtual machine, follow the instructions just previously. Then, in the Finder, Control-click (right-click) the file (which has the extension .vmwarevm) and choose Show Package Contents.

Picture 2
A new window opens, revealing all the constituent files and folders.
Picture 4  

To learn more about the book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2, or buy it, click here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.4 Update Now Available

Fusion "2.0.4 already?", you ask. That's right, we are releasing VMware Fusion 2.0.4 today to address a critical security issue. At VMware, we take security very seriously and always stay vigilant to provide the safest products and solutions possible. Here is the security issue fixed in this release:

Host code execution vulnerability from a guest operating system: A critical vulnerability in the virtual machine display function might
allow a guest operating system to run code on the host. The Common
Vulnerabilities and Exposures project (cve.mitre.org) has assigned the
name CVE-2009-1244 to this issue.

You can read more about it at VMware security advisory VMSA-2009-0006.

VMware Fusion 2.0.4 is a free update for all VMware Fusion 1.x and VMware Fusion 2.x users. You can download the bits here. The release notes is here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.3 Update Now Available

Fusion
We are pleased to announce our latest maintenance release of VMware Fusion 2. VMware Fusion 2.0.3 is a free update for all VMware Fusion 1.x and VMware Fusion 2.x users. You can download the bits here.

VMware Fusion 2.0.3 is a concentrated effort by the team to fix a small number of high-impact issues. Here are the highlights of the release:

Printing Works Again!

VMware Fusion's driverless printer sharing feature allows you to share your Mac printers very easily with your Windows virtual machines, with no driver installation or configuration needed. However, the feature stopped working on Mac OS X 10.5.6 after Apple Security Update 2009-001. We raced to get this fixed, and I am happy to announce that you can share your printers again in VMware Fusion 2.0.3!

Picture 3

We also fixed another printing related issue, where the Enabled check box in VMware Fusion Printer Settings (shown above) might get deselected automatically.

Runs on the Latest Macs

You can run VMware Fusion 2.0.3 on the new Mac Pros, iMacs, and Mac Minis that Apple released in March 2009. If your new Mac comes with the default graphics option, Fusion 2.0.3 will run great on it. For users who opted for the non-default ATI graphics card on the Mac Pro or iMac, there is a known 3D issue and we recommend you turn off 3D acceleration for the time being.

Overview_hero4_20090309


Experimental Support for Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server as Guest

If you are a Mac developer and have access to Apple's Snow Leopard seeds, you can now run the latest Snow Leopard Server builds (32-bit kernel) released before April 2009 in a virtual machine. This allows you to play with the latest Apple operating system in the safety of a virtualized environment, and to test your software in different versions of Mac OS X on a single Mac.

Picture 2

You can read more details including known issues in the release notes. Enjoy VMware Fusion 2.0.3!

Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 Series: Install Boot Camp Drivers

Cover_vmware_fusion_2
In this week's installment of our Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 blog series, we are going to talk about installing Boot Camp drivers in your Windows virtual machine. If you are new to the series, the ebook Take Control of VMware Fusion 2 by Joe Kissell, teaches you all the fundamentals of VMware Fusion 2, as well as tips and tricks to get the most out of running Windows on your Mac.

Here is this week's excerpt from Joe Kissell's new book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2:


INSTALL BOOT CAMP DRIVERS

The VMware Tools package includes drivers for most of the Mac hard-ware that Windows will use when running in a virtual machine, with a few notable exceptions—particularly Apple’s proprietary devices that use USB internally, including iSight cameras, Bluetooth transceivers, and the infrared port used for the Apple Remote. Drivers for these devices are available only from Apple, and only as part of the Boot Camp driver package (included on your Leopard Install DVD—you can’t download them separately).

So, if you want Windows applications to be able to access your iSight camera or Apple Remote directly, or if you want to use Bluetooth devices such as headsets or PDAs in Windows without going through Mac OS X, you’ll need these drivers. (If you’re already using a Bluetooth mouse or keyboard in Mac OS X, you can continue using it in Windows without any additional drivers.) If you don’t plan to use any of these devices in Windows, you can skip this section.

To install the Boot Camp drivers under Windows:

1.    With Windows running in Fusion, insert your Leopard Install DVD. The Boot Camp installer should run automatically.

Picture 2
 

Auto repair: If the installer doesn’t run, check if the virtual CD/DVD drive is in use. To do this, open the Virtual Machine > CD/DVD menu. If Disconnect CD/DVD is enabled, select it. That should cause the Boot Camp installer to run; if not, choose Start > (My) Computer and double-click the DVD icon.

2.    Follow the onscreen instructions to install the software.

Picture 3

3.    You’ll be prompted to restart Windows when the installer finishes.

After your virtual machine has restarted, you can use your iSight camera (see the section “Connect and Disconnect Devices”), Apple Remote, or Bluetooth devices from within Windows. (To learn about using USB devices, read the section “USB Device Settings.”)


To learn more about the book Take Control of VMware Fusion 2, or buy it, click here.