VMware on Friday
released a second beta of its Fusion virtualization software.
This marks the second major release this week of virtualization software for running the Windows operating system on Macs. VMware rival Parallels
released version 2.5 of its software on Feb. 27.
Among the improvements in the new version of VMware’s Fusion is an ability to run Windows-designed 3-D gaming software, said Dan Chu, VMware’s vice president of emerging products and markets. Chu also noted that Fusion will be able to run in both 64-bit and 32-bit modes, while Parallels only supports the older 32-bit standard.
Parallels Marketing Manager Benjamin Rudolph said his company will add support for the 64-bit standard and 3-D graphics in an upgrade due later this year.
Although VMware is clearly the industry leader in virtualization, it’s largely focused on enterprise virtualization of servers. Parallels focuses on the niche Fusion is going after, that of running Windows on a Mac.
“I think we’re far ahead of them on virtualizing [Windows on] the Mac,” Rudolph said.
Parallels’ newest version of its Mac product lists for $80, although existing users can download the upgrade for free. VMware’s currently available version is free, but Chu would not disclose the price at which VMware’s final product will sell when it hits the market.