“There are two common methods for running Microsoft Windows and Windows programs on an Apple Macintosh, and one of those methods just got better and easier,” Walt Mossberg reports for The Wall Street Journal.
“The first approach uses a feature called Boot Camp that comes free on every new Mac. Using Boot Camp, the entire Mac is turned into a Windows PC, with the full capabilities and speed of a standard Windows machine. No trace of the Mac operating system is left running,” Mossberg reports. “The downside is that you can’t run Windows and Mac programs side by side.”
Mossberg reports, “The second approach uses one of two third-party programs to create a virtual Windows PC inside your Mac. This faux Windows machine runs at normal speeds and can operate simultaneously with the Mac’s own operating system. Programs native to each operating system can run side by side. The downside is that, because Windows doesn’t get complete control of the computer’s hardware, it isn’t quite as fast as in Boot Camp, and a few of its functions, like 3D graphics, don’t work as well.”
“This latter method is enabled by two excellent, closely matched $80 programs: Parallels, from a Swiss-based company of the same name, and Fusion, from VMWare (VMW), a U.S. company,” Mossberg reports. “It is Fusion that just got better, because VMWare just issued version 2.0 of the product with lots of new features, some of which let it catch up to the older Parallels and some of which push it ahead.”
Mossberg reports, “I’ve been testing Fusion 2.0 for a couple of weeks on two different Macs, and using it to run both Windows XP and Windows Vista. My verdict is that while you won’t go wrong with Parallels, Fusion edges it out as the better product.”
Read the full review here.