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VMware Fusion 2.0 Beta 1

VMware has released Beta 1 of VMware Fusion 2.0, the next major upgrade to VMware’s desktop virtualization product for Mac OS X. Even more exciting, VMware has announced that version 2.0 of VMware Fusion will be a free upgrade for existing Fusion 1.x owners, as a “thank you” to their early adopters. Sweet!

The list of new features is far too long to reproduce here, but a few stick out as notable:

  • Multi-monitor support: Guest operating systems will see multiple monitors attached to the Mac, and when in Unity mode you’ll be able to drag Unity windows between monitors.

  • Improved 3D support: Fusion 2.0 now supports DirectX 9.0 Shader Model 2, allowing even more 3D applications to run as a VM under Fusion.

  • Easier Windows printing: Windows VMs will pick up printers attached to your Mac without any additional setup.

  • Various networking improvements: Fusion 2.0 Beta 1 also includes a number of networking improvements, such as the ability for bridged VMs to detect changes to the Mac’s network connection and refresh their network address automatically.

Be sure to visit the Fusion 2.0 Beta 1 landing page for the complete list of features and more complete information.

Personally, it’s interesting to me to see how the VMware Fusion team has really capitalized and focused on the user interaction side of desktop virtualization. Much more so than with VMware Workstation, VMware Fusion is really bringing to life the idea of application agnosticism (great idea, not so great name, but I coined it so I guess I’m stuck with it) or personal computing as a collection of VMs. As virtualization becomes more pervasive, it also needs to become more transparent, and as its transparency increases its adoption—at least among consumers—will also increase.

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