updated 12:10 pm EDT, Mon August 27, 2007
Parallels Desktop 3 update
Parallels late last week announced Parallels Desktop 3.0 for Mac Beta2, a feature-oriented update to its virtualization software for Mac OS X. Parallels Desktop for Mac allows Intel Mac owners to install and use Microsoft Windows XP or Windows Vista right alongside Mac OS X without rebooting. The software blends Mac OS X and Windows application windows together using its "Coherence" technology to simplify interaction between the two operating systems, making Windows applications look and feel like Mac OS X programs. The update includes major enhancements to Coherence which include Coherence support for Expose and Transparent Windows; support for overlapping several Windows and Mac windows, and the ability to silently boot into Coherence mode. Parallels Desktop 3.0 for Mac Beta2 will be released as a free upgrade for existing Parallels Desktop 3 customers. New licenses are priced at $80. [updated, corrected]
Parallels Desktop allows users to migrate Linux PC and virtual machines to Macs using Transporter, and users can change a virtual machine's disk format using the updated Parallels Image Tool.
The update will allow users to change Sound Devices "on the fly," and offers support for connecting iPhones to iTunes in Windows. The update also adds the ability to use a Mac desktop and Music folders as Windows desktop and music folders, consolidating both desktops to reduce file copying/duplication.
The update optionally automatically maps and accesses Shared Folders using Windows drive, and includes significant improvements to CPU usage as well as overall performance and memory management. Additionally, Parallels Desktop 3 Beta2 provides support for more than 4GB of memory for multiple machines.
Share desktops, movies, pictures, music, and documents
New Shared Folders provide access to all Mac documents in Windows, negating the need for users to drag-and-drop or move commonly used files via a traditional shared folder. The update does not duplicate files, however, allowing both operating systems to manipulate the same set of documents for simpler control and management of documents.