How to: Virtualize Mac OS X Lion

A virtual machine (VM) is a software implementation of a machine that executes programs like a physical machine. VMs are separated into two major categories; these categories are based on their use and degree of correspondence to any real machine. A system virtual machine provides a complete system platform which supports the execution of a complete operating system. A process virtual machine is designed to run a single program, which means that it supports a single process. Any software running in a virtual machine is restricted and it cannot break out of its virtual world.


The virtualization story for Mac OS X is about to change, a lot. This is a positive change as Lion’s licensing changes the rules for virtual machines. In some circumstances for certain enterprise deployments, virtual Mac OS X environments are held in a very high light. By giving access to Mac only applications, the demand increases without having to supply Mac hardware on a one-to-one basis.


Leopard started the virtualization for Apple. Apple began to permit limited virtualization of Mac OS X, with two major caveats: you could only run VMs on Mac hardware (no blade server racks full of HP gear serving out Mac desktops). By doing this, it cost a steep price because you needed a Mac OS X Server license. Since it was so expensive, few people took advantage of it.


Lion’s new EULA is prepared to change all the rules. 10.7 users will be allowed to run one or two virtual Mac instances on each physical Mac. The tools will be helped by VMware Fusion, Parallels, VirtualBox or others. The people that will benefit from this are developers, IT managers and others who need to keep a known-good test environment or try out new apps in a controlled fashion. Like this article? Hate this article? Leave a comment and we will let you know as soon as possible.


Crossover Review

Having a Mac has ups and downs, it’s awesome for music, business, and school. One thing Mac is definitely lacking are games. All those awesome titles like Call of Duty, Battlefield, and others are usually only on Windows and occasionally iOS, but there is always an answer and in this case it is called CrossOver. CrossOver brings all those great applications made for Windows to your Mac and even Linux. It comes in three different versions to fit your needs: CrossOver Standard, CrossOver Games, and CrossOver Professional. Here is a quick summary of how it works. It emulates windows, but there is no dealing with virtual machines or full reboots. CrossOver simulates a reboot within the application if one is needed. CrossOver beats virtualizing games on your Mac in VMware Fusion or Parallels by not having to run unnecessary processes.

It also works with Wine, which pretty much ports or brings over the important files from Windows and allows your Mac to run the applications in CrossOver. It works very well with CrossTie games, but I have found that games that are not supported by CrossTie directly have a slight amount of lag, but for gaming on a Mac, the graphics and speed are on par. However, you also need to take into account that the lag might not be from the application, but the hardware of the Mac.

Above I talked about CrossTie, which helps you by supporting certain games that can be found on the CodeWeavers website’s compatibility page. CrossTie has everything you need, and downloads everything you need. Even if your software isn’t supported, almost all the time you can get your software to work. Also, if your software isn’t supported by CrossTie you can pledge for it, and get it supported by CrossTie.

My final thoughts of CrossOver are that it works extremely well when you think of all that CrossOver is doing. It is very fast, and being an avid game, I have found that games are just amazing on the Mac thanks to CrossOver.