There are those who think of Apple's Macintosh computers as cute little PCs with a bent on graphic design. In past years, those pigeon-holers would have been right.
But VMware is proving that the Mac can handle more sophisticated workloads and (are you sitting down?) even run Windows applications.
The company on Monday will roll out Fusion, which allows Mac users to run Mac OS X, Windows, Linux, Solaris and other applications on a Mac computer. The idea is to help Macs break out of the mold that they can only run applications written for Apple's operating system.
While some computer employees prefer to use a Mac to do work, their corporate offices are typically bent toward Windows applications, such as Outlook and Exchange. Fusion will allow users' Macs to run those applications without complications.
The software allows Mac users to run both 32- and 64-bit operating systems. Fusion also lets users copy and paste text between Mac and Linux or Solaris, or drag and drop files from the Mac desktop to Linux or Solaris. Also, virtual machines created with VMware Workstation, Server or VMware Infrastructure can run on Fusion.
Fusion also has experimental 3-D graphics support to let users play some DirectX 8.1 games in Windows XP Service Pack 2 virtual machines. The software also supports USB 2.0 devices, such as video cameras, high-speed hard disks and GPS devices.
Fusion, which supports more than 60 operating systems, employs power management capabilities to safeguard virtual machines when laptops are running out of battery power.