Access a second operating system on your Mac with VMware's Fusion
We downloaded it to a MacBook Intel Core 2 Duo and then installed Windows XP without a hitch. Fusion will find and run the existing Windows OS that ships with Boot Camp, so a separate Windows installation isn't necessary in that case. According to the VMware website, Fusion also works with Vista. Once your OS of choice is installed, let the fun begin.
Fusion makes it sinfully easy to work with native Mac and Windows apps at the same time. It's not necessary to reboot your system to access Windows, simply select the tool in Finder and the virtual operating system opens in a separate, resizable window. From there, it's possible to do pretty much anything you'd do on a standard PC, including install software and browse the internet.
If the whole two-machines-in-one vibe doesn't fully grab you, then the Fusion's optional Unity tool will. This trippy feature puts virtual apps directly on the Mac's desktop, and does away with the separate window entirely. If Windows and Mac got married, Unity would be their lovechild.
Cut and paste text within documents, drag and drop files, and share folders between the OSes without missing a beat. Run Media Windows Player while surfin' with Safari (Beach Boys, anyone?). Play Minesweeper while you wait for iMovie to burn a DVD. Unity makes using a virtual machine practically painless -- and a whole lot of fun.
Despite the fact that Fusion is still in beta, we noticed very few performance issues. Installation was a breeze and both OSes were stable with no freezes or crashes. The Mac was a little sluggish at first but turning off the debugging mode sped it right up. We also noticed a bit of ghosting while resizing or moving windows but that also seemed to resolve itself when debugging was turned off.
Fusion is best appreciated through a hands-on demonstration and is available as a free download while it's in beta. The price will eventually be $79.99, but VMware is offering 50% off the price for a limited time. Still can't decide? Check out our Gallery to see more Fusion screenshots.