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5 The Great Parallels Video Testimonial – Our First Winner!

Congratulations to Eric Morales of Fairfax, VA, who was selected by me and my team as the first winner of the Great Parallels Video Testimonial Contest.

Eric has type I diabetes, and uses an insulin pump to control his condition. As with many medical devices, the software that powers it is Windows-only. Eric has a Mac. Rather than buy a new computer, Eric uses Windows XP in Parallels Desktop to keep his insulin pump running, and keep himself healthy.

Hear him talk about it in his own words. He explains it much better than me!

Thanks for a great video Eric, and I hope you enjoy the box of Parallels swag!

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8 Ask Ben Anything – Vista compliance, managing Windows applications in Coherence, GA version of the Update

I’ve got build 1848 of Parallels Desktop for Mac, and when I tried to install my new copy of Vista Ultimate, I got told that my machine isn’t ACPI compliant and the installation failed. I thought I saw on the blog that Parallels does run Vista, so what’s going on?

– Andy K.

Parallels Desktop does run Vista in a virtual machine, but you’ll need to upgrade to our most recent publicly available build, build #1970. You can get it here.

In the future, make sure that you have auto-update enabled so you get new builds the minute they come out. You can turn this feature on by clicking “Help” in the Parallels menu bar, then clicking “check for updates”. There’s a checkbox in there to select auto-updates.

Is there an easy way to add/remove Windows apps from my dock in Coherence? Kind of a pain to go to Windowed mode, open an app, then select “keep in dock”.

– Elena N.

There are two easy ways, actually. If you go into your Windows virtual machine file (located in home -> library -> Parallels), you’ll now see a folder called “Windows Applications.” This folder houses a shortcut to every Windows app you’ve opened in your VM. Just drag an icon to your application dock and you’re set.

There’s also a very cool third-party application called Valet which offers easy access to all of your applications, Windows or Mac. Valet will inutively learn which apps you use most, and help you organize them into categories for easier access. I’ve been playing with Valet on my Mac for some time, and I find it indispensible for quick access to my Windows and Mac applications, especially when working in Coherence. You can learn more about Valet and try it out here.

When will the Update be out of beta?

– Anonymous

Very soon. Development is going well, testing is coming along nicely and we’re working hard, so expect this in the next few weeks. Thanks again to everyone who’s participating in the beta and helping us make this the best Parallels Desktop version yet.
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6 Parallels on the Pomcast


Want to see coherence in action and learn more about what’s coming in the Parallels Destkop for Mac update? Check out the interview I did at MacWorld with StuFFmc and the Pomcast crew:

For those of you unfamiliar with Pomcast, its a multilingual video/audio podcast that covers all things Mac. A great resource for those of you (and me) who are slightly geeky. You can get Pomcast at the main Pomcast page, or via iTunes.

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49 Vista is here. So what does it mean for virtualization?


Unless you’ve been in hiding, you probably know that Microsoft finally unveiled the consumer versions of Windows Vista today. It’s undeniably cool, and without question will be the OS that most of the world will be running in the months and years ahead. If you buy a new Windows machine, chances are that it will be pre-loaded with Vista. There are 4 increasingly powerful consumer flavors of Vista – Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, and Ultimate – each of which are licensed for unlimited and unrestricted use on a PC.

If you’re moving to a new machine, getting up and running on Vista will be relatively straight forward (NOTE: I’m writing a post for later this week on how to use Parallels Transporter to ease the migration from XP to Vista, so stay tuned). But what if you want to run Vista in a virtual environment, via a product like Parallels Workstation 2.2 or Parallels Desktop for Mac? That’s where things can get sticky.

Microsoft has released a new EULA (End User License Agreement) that states that only certain versions of Vista – Business and Ultimate (and Enterprise for corporate customers) are eligible to be run in a virtual machine. The EULA says that Home Basic and Home Premium CANNOT be run in a virtual machine.

Here’s the tecnical legalese from the EULAs:
For Vista Home Basic and Home Premium Editions:
“USE WITH VIRTUALIZATION TECHNOLOGIES. You may not use the software installed on the licensed device within a virtual (or otherwise emulated) hardware system.”

For Vista Enterprise and Ultimate Editions:
“USE WITH VIRTUALIZATION TECHNOLOGIES. You may use the software installed on the licensed device within a virtual (or otherwise emulated) hardware system on the licensed device. If you do so, you may not play or access content or use applications protected by any Microsoft digital, information or enterprise rights management technology or other Microsoft rights management services or use BitLocker. We advise against playing or accessing content or using applications protected by other digital, information or enterprise rights management technology or other rights management services or using full volume disk drive encryption.”

In short, this means that if you’re a user and you want to run Vista virtually, you MUST buy the highest end versions of Vista, or you’ll be in violation of the Microsoft EULA.

Here are the price points for each version:

  • Home Basic $199
  • Home Premium $239
  • Business $299
  • Ultimate $399

To me, this strategy could hold back users who embrace cutting-edge technologies like virtualization, which means they won’t upgrade to Vista. This means that Microsoft has effectively lost an upgrade customer (in the case of Windows PCs) or an entirely new customer (for Mac and Linux users).

Microsoft has a great opportunity to open their operating system to an entire market of Mac users who would never normally use Windows, and to ease the way for enterprises around the globe to upgrade to Vista.

Want to weigh in on the debate? Leave a comment here, and make sure to contact Microsoft and let them know what you think! You can email them, or post a note on their Vista community forum.

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3 Parallels & SWsoft: one-stop-shopping for everything virtualization



As you may or may not have seen, David Kirkpatrick of Fortune Magazine wrote an article today that reveals that Parallels is owned by SWsoft, a global company that offers Virtuozzo, its own OS-level virtualization solution, and a range of automation products.

You’re probably asking “So, why make this announcement now?” Here’s why:

You all know that 2006 has been a very big year for Parallels. Even though we’re a young company, we’ve achieved a lot, especially in the Macintosh space with our Parallels Desktop for Mac product, and SWsoft’s guidance and resources have been extremely valuable as we built Parallels from tiny newcomer to industry leader. However, there’s a lot more to Parallels than our Desktop forMac product, and as we grow our business and move towards new versions of our desktop products, and beyond the desktop into the server virtualization space, we felt that it is now appropriate to let everyone know how the business is set up, and what that means for our customers.

This announcement makes a lot of sense for us, and for you. With the combined strengths of SWsoft and Parallels out in the open, we’ve got your virtualization needs covered top to bottom. In short, you can now hit us as a “one-stop shop” to outfit your organization with industry-leading hardware and OS-level virtualization that fits your server and desktop setup, regardless of what combination of Mac, Windows and Linux you may be running.

If you’re a Parallels customer, breathe easy – working with us won’t change. You can still contact us directly for support, sales, and partnerships, you’ll still be able to buy Parallels branded products in the Apple Store and through other great retailers like Staples, Office Depot, CompUSA, and Amazon.com, and you’ll still be able to track us down at a show or conference in our bright orange shirts!

When you get right down to it, all this means is that we’ve got more ways to help you get the most out of your machines. I’m pretty psyched about it, and I’m sure that you will be too.

  • Read David Kirkpatrick’s article in Fortune here.

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