updated 09:20 pm EDT, Wed July 30, 2008
VMware Fusion 2.0b2 posted
VMWare on Wednesday released VMware Fusion 2.0 Beta 2, a new free public beta of its software for running Windows (and other operating systems) within Mac OS X. The update brings better utilities and performance, support for multiple screenshots, better gaming, full 1080p HD video acceleration at near-native speeds (with less CPU utilization), and support for Mac OS X Leopard Server. Adding more Windows-integration features, users can now share applications between Windows and Mac, launch Mac files with Windows applications (as well as Windows files with Mac applications) and also set web, email, and other links for to default to either Windows or Mac. In addition, VMware's new Mirrored Folders map the contents of the Desktop, Documents, Music, and Pictures folders to the Windows Desktop, My Documents, My Music, and My Pictures folders users can now use the Mac keyboard to send custom keystroke combinations to the virtual machine. The free beta is available online along with a key.
The second beta also adds the ability to take and manage multiple snapshots for each of virtual machine, enabling users to keep checkpoints before installation of new software or other changes. The new Fusion beta also offers AutoProtect, automatic, enabling timed snapshots at half-hourly, hourly, or daily intervals.
The company also said that Beta 2 also adds more usability and "Mac-friendly" features, like CPU utilization reductions, Mac OS X Leopard Quick Look integration, Apple Help integration, and better activity monitors in the status bar.
DirectX 9.0 Shader Model 2 3D acceleration is also improved in the latest beta, offering broader support for running Windows games (without rebooting), VMware noted in its blog. Other features include better Linux support (with support for Ubuntu Hardy Heron and Linux Unity view) and support for up to four virtual CPUs in each virtual machines along with the ability to control virtual machines from the Command Line using VMrun.
Finally, VMware says that users can now mount the virtual disk of a powered-off Windows virtual machine using VMDKMounter (under Mac OS X 10.5 or higher) as well as resize virtual disks.