Mac News Review

Macs Still Apple's Core, Tiny 12 GB Store 'n' Go Drive, NeoOffice to Support OpenXML Docs, and More

This Week's Apple and Desktop Mac News

Compiled by Charles Moore and edited by Dan Knight - 2007.01.19

PowerBook, iBook, MacBook, and other portable computing is covered in The 'Book Review.

All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted.

News & Opinion

Apple Updates

Products

iPod Accessories

Software

Desktop Mac Deals

News & Opinion

Personal Computers Still Core of Apple's Business

The Boston Globe's Hiawatha Bray says:

"Jack Minsky built a successful business by writing software for Apple 's Macintosh computers. So when Apple last week dropped the word 'computer' from its name, and dedicated its annual Macworld trade show to noncomputer gadgets, Minsky might have felt concern for his company's future.

"Not so. Minsky, president of SoftwareMacKiev Co. of Boston, thinks Apple Inc.'s new strategy is right on target. 'We're excited as we can be about the way Apple is going,' Minsky said. In his view, Apple chief Steve Jobs's decision to downplay Mac computers is part of a strategy that will make the machines more important than ever.

"Despite the hoopla surrounding Apple's iPod music players, and the hype over upcoming Apple home entertainment servers and cellphones, the company still makes a lot of money on computers. During the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, Apple sold more than 39 million iPods, compared to just 5.3 million Macs. But the Macs brought in nearly as much revenue, $7.4 billion, as the $7.7 billion in iPod sales, and have a better profit margin. Besides, since the rise of iPod, Apple's computer business has been better than ever, with unit sales up 61 percent over the past two fiscal years."

Turning a Mac mini into a Mini ATX

The Spanish website Entre Maqueros has posted a tutorial on how to install a Mac mini in a mini ATX format PC case.

The site is in Spanish, but there are lots of illustrations. here's a translation of the article introduction with a tip of the hat to AltaVista Babelfish:

"Those that you are faithful of this blog you will know that when I bought my mini Mac Intel (first generation) already I had in mind to change its pretty body and turn it a Super Mini Mac. As Apple does not make the Mac that I need, I have no recourse other than to do it myself. Publishing a chapter every day, I will detail all the steps that I have followed to make the transformation.

"I must remark that all the steps that I have followed allow me to return the Mini Mac in to its original case if I wish. The process is totally reversible.

"Some will think I'm a crazy person to profane a so pretty housing. Before beginning I must say that this it is MY Mini Mac, I I have paid for it and I do with it what pleases me. To the rest of people that have desire to learn, I hope you will find this tutorial useful"

For Spanish-speakers:

"Los que sois fieles de este blog sabréis que cuando compré mi Mac Mini Intel (de los primeros) ya tenía en mente cambiarle su bonito cuerpo y convertirlo en un Super Mac Mini. Como Apple no fabrica el Mac que yo preciso, no tengo más remedio que hacérmelo. A partir del día 1 y publicando un capítulo cada día, detallaré todos los pasos que he seguido para realizar la transformación.

"Debo remarcar que todos los pasos que he seguido me permiten volver a montar el Mac Mini en su caja original en el momento en que lo desee. El proceso es totalmente reversible.

"Se que habrá quien me tache de loco por profanar una carcasa tan bonita y convertir el Mac Mini en un engendro. Antes de empezar debo remarcar que este es MI Mac Mini, yo lo he pagado y hago con él lo que me apetece. Al resto de gente que tengan ganas de aprender, os cito aquí el día 1 de enero por la tarde para empezar el tutorial.

"Espero que os guste como ha quedado y que os sea muy útil."

Apple Updates

Mac OS X: Firmware Updates for Intel-based Macs

An updated Apple Knowledge Base article says:

"Firmware updates for Intel-based Macintosh computers may not be displayed automatically using Software Update. If they do not appear in Software Update, they must be manually downloaded from the Apple Support Downloads site.

"If you are unsure whether your computer needs a particular update, simply download and open the update installer. The installer will alert you if the firmware update is already installed or not needed."

Products

TechRestore, Inc. Launches DataRestore

PR: TechRestore, Inc. has announced that they have begun offering a data recovery service for Mac & PC laptops, desktops, iPods, Memory Cards and CD/DVD media. The new service, known as DataRestore, offers consumers a welcome alternative to traditional high priced data recovery services.

DataRestore simplifies the entire data recovery process by offering the following features:

Reality based up-front pricing for all recoveries. Door-to-door pickup from any location in the continental U.S. No recovery, no charge

Fast turnaround time - overnight analysis and return shipping.

"While most data recovery companies love to operate in vague terms, with lots of technical jargon to throw you off the fact that you're going to be hit hard in your pocketbook, DataRestore brings you easy to understand pricing that starts at just $199," said Shannon Jean, Founder and President of TechRestore. "We're bringing the same fanatical customer service and flat-rate pricing to the data recovery business that our laptop, iPod and PSP customers have enjoyed for years."

DataRestore was introduced to the public during last weeks' Macworld Expo, where the thousands of Mac users who visited the TechRestore booth expressed their support for the new service with one phrase: "It's about time." DataRestore is aimed at the consumer market, for customers that need to quickly recover their photos, documents and other data but that don't wish to break the bank to do so.

G-Drive Q Supports eSATA, USB 2.0, FireWire 400 and 800

G-Drive QPR: G-Drive Q storage solutions offer the ultimate in flexibility by providing users with FireWire 400, FireWire 800, USB 2.0, and eSATA ports all in a single unit. G-Drive Q is the perfect high-performance solution for storage intensive applications including audio/video editing, digital photography MP3 libraries and high-speed data back up.

The Ultimate in Performance!

G-Drive Q offers the best performance of any single disk external storage solution currently available . . . data transfer rates up to 85 MB/second!.

Capacities to 500 GB - SATA II Hard Drives

G-Drive Q utilizes the latest technology 7200 RPM SATA II hard disk drives with up to 16 MB cache. Available in capacities up to 500 GB, G-Drive Q can store over 38 hours of DV footage, 125,000 MP3 files, or 250,000 digital pictures!

G-Drive QEasy Setup!

Simply attach G-Drive Q to your Mac or PC via your interface of choice and initialize. That's all there is to it!

The Best Single Drive Storage Solution Available - Period.

Best of breed components coupled with superior design and high quality construction make G-Drive Q the storage solution of choice for professional applications.

The Best Warranty & Support in the Business

G-Drive is backed by the best support and warranty in the business.

  • The industry's first quad-interface external disk storage solutions
  • FireWire 400, FireWire 800, USB 2.0 and eSATA ports all in a single unit
  • "Fan-less" design with unique silent cooling technology
  • Storage capacities up to 500 GB
  • Utilizes the next-gen 924 chipset from Oxford Semiconductor
  • High-performance 7200 RPM SATA II drives w/up to 16MB cache
  • Security lock compatible
  • Standard 2-year factory warranty
  • Driver-free operation with Mac OS X and Windows 2000/XP

High Quality Aluminum Enclosure

G-Drive QFan-less Design

G-Drive Q features a sturdy all-aluminum enclosure and is engineered to provide adequate cooling to the hard disk without the use of a noisy fan.

This unique "fan-less" cooling system is designed to silently dissipate heat for superior reliability and data integrity

Product Comparison

G-Drive Q d2 Extreme*

  • Quad-interface: FireWire 400, FireWire 800, USB 2.0 & eSATA ports all in a single unit
  • Next-generation 924 chipset from Oxford Semiconductor
  • 7200 RPM SATA II hard druve w/up to 16 MB cache
  • All models feature silent "fan-less" design
  • Performance up to 85 MB/second*
  • Standard 2-year warranty (all markets)

* d2 Extreme is a trademark or registered trademark of LaCie Limited.

G-Drive Q (FW 400. FW800, USB 2.0, eSATA)

  • 160GB 7200 RPM / 8MB Cache, $219.00
  • 250GB 7200 RPM / 8MB Cache, $249.00
  • 500GB 7200 RPM / 16MB Cache, $459.00

Firewire Accessories

  • 3-port FireWire 800 PCI-X Adapter - Add (2) high-speed external FireWire 800 ports* and (1) external FireWire 400 port to any Power Mac G4/G5 or PC equipped with PCI-X expansion slots. This adapter supports DV, HDV, DVCPRO HD, 8-bit and 0-bit SD video workflows. *Computer must be equipped with a 64 bit PCI-X slot to achieve FW 800 speeds.
  • 9-pin to 9-pin FireWire cable (2m) - Need another 2 meter 9-pin to 9-pin FireWire 800 cable? This is the same high quality cable that ships with G-RAID and G-Drive FW 800 / 400. $19.99
  • 9-pin to 6-pin FireWire 800 cable (2m) - Connect G-RAID or G-Drive to a legacy 6-pin FireWire port with this 2 meter 9-pin to 6-pin FireWire 800 cable. $19.99
  • 9-pin to 4-pin FireWire 800 cable (2m) - Connect G-RAID or G-Drive to 4-pin FireWire connectors (camcorders, PC laptops, etc.) with this 2 meter 9-pin to 4-pin FireWire 800 cable. $19.99
  • 6-pin to 6-pin FireWire 400 cable (2m) - Connect G-RAID or G-Drive to 6-pin FireWire 400 connectors. 2 meters. $9.99
  • 6-pin to 4-pin FireWire 400 cable (2m) - Connect G-RAID or G-Drive to 4-pin FireWire 400 connectors (camcorders, PC laptops, etc.) with this 2 meter 6-pin to 4-pin FireWire 400 cable. $9.99

USB Accessories

  • USB 2.0 cable - Connect G-Drive USB and G-Drive Combo to a USB equipped Computer or laptop. This is the same high quality USB 2.0 cable that ships with the G-Drive USB and G-Drive Combo. $15.99
  • USB 2.0 cable (mini "B" to "A") - Connect G-Drive mini with a USB port to a USB equipped Computer or laptop. $15.99

Power Adapters

  • G-RAID2 Power Adapter - Replacement 3A Power adapter for G-RAID2 (4-pin power plug) Available Soon
  • G-RAID/G-SATA Power Adapter - Replacement 3A Power adapter for G-RAID and G-SATA products. (5-pin power plug) $24.99
  • G-Drive Power Adapter - Replacement 2A Power adapter for G-Drive products. Buy an extra for when you travel! $19.99
  • G-Drive-mini Power Adapter - External powers adapter for use with systems that do not supply the required bus power. $19.99
  • G-PLAY Power Adapter - Replacement Power adapter for G-PLAY. $19.99

Verbatim Launches Ultra-Compact 12 GB Store 'n' Go USB Drive

PR: Verbatim Corporation has unveiled its newest Store 'n' Go USB Drive based on 1" hard drive technology with up to 12 GB of storage in a unit slightly larger than a standard USB flash drive. Designed to enable users to carry volumes of data, video and audio in a single portable unit; the new 12 GB Store 'n' Go USB will have a projected street price of $179. Verbatim will show the ultra-slim device for the first time this week at its CES Booth in the South Hall, #4/36249.

The new Store 'n' Go Drive makes it convenient for users to keep vital information such as emails, photos, personal calendars, presentations and video files available at all times. The sleek USB storage device comes pre-loaded with Mobile Launchpad, a utility for downloading applications that can be run directly from the Verbatim USB Drive. Mobile Launchpad also allows users to have complete access to personal files and data without loading the content on a guest system. For quick and immediate access, the drives can also be used in the familiar drag 'n' drop mode.

Providing a true portable working environment with a flip-out USB connector and USB extension cable, the unit is highly compact and delivers high performance, low power consumption and superior reliability. With the device, users can carry and access up to 12 hours of MPEG-1 video, about 6,000 300-DPI photos, 6 hours of DVD-quality video or tens of thousands of personal or business documents.

The tremendous capacity, combined with Mobile Launchpad, makes it convenient for users to store mobile applications on the Store 'n' Go USB Drive, ready to use wherever they go. Many applications specifically designed to enhance the portable experience are available for download online. Programs include mobile photo databases, ID/Password management tools, and applications which use the drive to log in from any computer and make Internet phone calls or have online chats.

"Whether it's for business, school or entertainment, people want to have their content and data with them without carrying their computer everywhere they go," said Ron Hanafin, Verbatim Product Marketing Manager. "Our new Store 'n' Go Drive is a convenient solution for creating this portable working environment, where people can have access to applications and information with ease and style."

A stand-out in both design innovation and durability, the hot-pluggable 12 GB Store 'n' Go Drive has a polymer enclosure to provide shock resistance to the hard disc inside. With gently rounded corners, the slender case fits comfortably in the hand. When moving between different locations, the drive can be placed in its designer travel wallet and slipped into your pocket, purse, attaché, or backpack.

Using the rugged swing-out USB connector, the hot-pluggable Store 'n' Go Drives can be easily moved from computer to computer without having to shut down or reboot the system. For added convenience and usage flexibility, Verbatim also provides a USB extension cable to make it easy to connect to a personal or guest computer. When connected to a computer, the blue center area of the drive lights up, showing the drive is connected and powered. The area blinks when information is being transferred between drive and computer.

The drive's compact size makes it easy for students to carry research and class project files from school to home. Consumers can plug the device into a friend's or family member's computer and instantly share slideshows of family photos, vacation videos and personal MP3 selections. Busy executives who are constantly on-the-go can use a Store 'n' Go USB Drive to keep the latest company presentations, customer and partner contact information, databases, spreadsheets and key business files with them at all times, without having to carry their notebook systems. And, with the convenience of being able to carry diagnostic/repair, configuration and application files in their pocket, Verbatim's Store 'n' Go USB Drive is also a compelling storage solution for IT personnel and service technicians.

Weighing just 1 oz., the Verbatim Store 'n' Go USB Drive measures a mere 1.38" x 0.38" x 2.8". The drive is fully compatible with Windows 98SE, ME, 2000, XP, CE 3.0 and higher; Mac OS 9, X, and higher; Linux 2.40 and higher systems. Mobile Launchpad is compatible with 98SE, ME, 2000, XP and higher systems.

The Verbatim 12 GB Store 'n' Go USB Drives will be available this month through authorized Verbatim retailers with an approximate street price of $179. The complete package includes a travel wallet, USB extension cable and a quick start user's guide.

Software

ScreenRecycler Allows You to Use Any Networked Computer as an Additional Display

PR: Most Mac users have a spare computer sitting right next to their main computer on their desk including a nice display. ScreenRecycler now enables you to use this spare computer as second display for your Mac. You can even use an idle machine for that purpose.

It's like a dual monitor setup without the need to buy an additional monitor.

Just start ScreenRecycler on your Mac then connect to ScreenRecycler via VNC from your old machine.

Use any machine as additional monitor on your Mac

New in version 0.70:

  • Added support for client cursor encoding
  • Cursor color for Intel in 32bit fixed.
  • Hextile and client cursor support now in status text.
  • Hextile degration switching back and forth fixed.
  • Removed assertions from final build process.
  • Removed bug where ScreenRecycler shutting down on client hangup.
  • Driver installation script change

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 on the ScreenRecycler machine. A VNC client program on the client machine.

System support: PPC/Intel

Free

NeoOffice 2.1 to Support OpenXML Documents, VBA Macros

PR: NeoOffice.org has announced the development and forthcoming release of NeoOffice 2.1. Scheduled for release in Q1 2007, NeoOffice 2.1 will contain a number of unique features including:

  • The latest features from OpenOffice.org 2.1
  • Opening, editing, and saving of Microsoft Office 2007 OpenXML documents
  • Execution of Visual Basic for Applications macros in Excel documents
  • Support for linear programming extensions for spreadsheets
  • And more!

Support for interoperability with Microsoft Office 2007 OpenXML formatted documents and Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is drawn from the ooo-build project, a branch of OpenOffice.org that includes several features which Sun has not yet integrated up-stream. ooo-build is a collaboration between many individuals & vendors spearheaded by Novell. Leveraging the ongoing contributions from ooo-build, NeoOffice.org is pleased to deliver the most compatible office productivity application suite for Mac OS X for today and beyond. NeoOffice.org is proud to collaborate with ooo-build to help make these important features available for all Mac owners. "It's great to have NeoOffice making their work available under the JCA to OpenOffice.org via. ooo-build, and building on our substantial investment here, I'm excited about working with them going forward." said Michael Meeks, Distinguished Engineer, Novell.

The NeoOffice 2.1 release will allow Mac users to utilize OpenXML documents prior to the announced availability of translators from Microsoft. With Microsoft's announced intention to remove VBA support in Microsoft Office Mac 2007, NeoOffice 2.1 will be one of the only available ongoing solutions for Mac users who use VBA macros in their Excel documents.

NeoOffice 2.1 is currently scheduled for release on 27 March 2007. The scheduled preliminary availability for NeoOffice Early Access Program members is 27 February 2007. With many thanks to an anonymous donor and the work pioneered by Novell, NeoOffice.org is proud to be able to continue to provide the most advanced set of office productivity applications available for Mac OS X with industry leading support for cross platform document exchange.

NeoOffice.org is an open source project dedicated to delivering a first class free software office productivity suite for Mac OS X. Based on OpenOffice.org, NeoOffice provides word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, drawing, and database applications. In addition to all the features of OpenOffice.org, NeoOffice features a fully native Mac OS X user interface, Spotlight integration, drag and drop, and other features to provide the ultimate Mac OS X user experience. With nearly 500,000 downloads each month, NeoOffice is the leading open source office productivity suite for Mac OS X.

iStat nano System Monitor

iStat nanoPR: An advanced system monitor in a tiny package. View detailed information on CPU, memory, hard drives, IP and external IP, bandwidth, CPU temperatures, fan speeds, battery, uptime and the top four processes. iStat nano features the lowest CPU usage of any stats widget we've seen (compare it if you don't believe us, I'm sure you'll be pleasantly surprised!).

New in version 1.8:

  • Added module to read temperature and fan speeds on Intel based Macs (speedit no longer required for temps)
  • Various bug fixes

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 or later.

System Support: PPC/Intel

Free

Airlook Monitors AirPort Base Stations

AirlookPR: Airlook is a Mac OS X widget which displays Airport Express Base Station information.

The widget makes use of SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) which Airport Base Stations offer, as a mean to inspect internal information. What the widget displays is actually a small subset of what can be retrieved using the SNMP commands.

Under normal conditions, the following information is displayed:

  • Name: the device name
  • Uptime: the time elapsed since the last reset
  • TCP reset sent: represents the number of TCP Reset sent by the Airport station. When using Airport in combination with a ADSL modem, this represents the number of incoming TCP connection received from public Internet and being refused by Airport. Of course, if the ADSL modem already implements firewalling, this value may equal 0.
  • Octets received: this value is relative to the Ethernet interface of Airport
  • Octets sent: this value is relative to the Ethernet interface of Airport
  • Wifi users: represents the number of Wifi users being associated to the Airport. This should at least be equal to 1.

From the V2 version of Airlook, the information is refreshed periodically every 2 seconds. The widget content is also updated when Dashboard is put to front (e.g. by using "F12" or by clicking on the dashboard dock icon).

Some parameters need to be set up for the widget to work properly. The input screen is the back side of the widget, which is displayed when clicking on the bottom right "i":

  • The Airport IP address
  • The configuration password (the same the the one used with the Apple Airport Configuration tool)

The parameters need only to be specified once. When being entered, they are stored as part of the widget preferences.

In case the parameter values are not correct, the widget will obviously not work as above. For more information on erroneous case and the possible workaround, please have a look to the readme file.

System requirements

  • Mac OSX 10.4.3 and above
  • An Airport Express (although it may also work with other Wifi devices implementing SNMP)

New in version 4.0:

  • displays detected Wifi users.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4.3 or later.

System Support: PPC/Intel

Free

Hardware Monitor Widget Edition

PR: Hardware Monitor Widget Edition is the Dashboard version of its "bigger brother" Hardware Monitor. You need a working registered copy of Hardware Monitor in order to fully use this widget. The applications are designed to give you access to all sensor readings Mac OS X uses to monitor and cool your computer.

The widget allows you to select two of your computer's sensors which should be displayed via Dashboard.

Unlike other widgets, Hardware Monitor is capable of processing the hardware calibration data Apple stores individually into each G5-based computer. So it displays the exact readings Mac OS X internally uses for cooling control, not just an "educated guess".

Hardware Monitor Widget Edition is electronically distributed software. You can download the product and test it before you decide to purchase an unrestricted usage license.

New in version 2.1:

  • Added support for a large number of voltage, current (amperage), power, and light sensors for Intel-based Macintosh systems.
  • Added full support for the new Apple Xserve Quad Xeon.
  • Added support for S.M.A.R.T. temperature sensors in SATA drives connected via an SAS bus.
  • Removed support for the internal Intel CPU sensor monitoring the target value of the core voltage. This is now superseded by the voltage sensors monitoring the actual core voltage supply.
  • The button to start the main application was removed.
  • The sensor menus on the preferences backside have been enhanced to better differentiate between sensors measuring different quantities at the same location.
  • The rounding of readings from frequency sensors of x86 processors has been updated according to Intel's recommendations.
  • Corrected a problem where a memory sensor in portable Core 2 Duo systems was misidentified as being a memory riser-card sensor.
  • Corrected a problem where the internal temperature sensor of Hitachi Deskstar 7K500 drives was no longer seen as functioning sensor.

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.4 or later.

System Support: PPC/Intel

Shareware

Apple Boot Desktop Theme

PR: A desktop theme including wallpapers and screensavers optimized for Mac OS X Tiger and Leopard.

Are you sometimes tired by the original aqua desktop theme or other selfmade desktops?

You like to have a simple desktop theme ? Then apple boot desktop is for you.

Apple Boot Desktop ThemeUse the wallpapers to get a nice backround on your desktop, choose between original gray apple, light gray apple and white apple.

How to:

Choose your computers resolution, select the image from the folder and copy it to your favourite folder of desktop pictures.

Open systems preferences, go to desktop pictures/screensavers and select the new wallpaper, your desktop will be changed.

Use the apple boot screensavers, wich are in the same design. resolutions are for standard and widescreen.

How to:

Select the screensaver from the folder and copy it to your favourite screensaver folder.

open systems preferences, go to desktop pictures/screensavers and select the new screensaver.

New in version 1.1:

  • Changed name (was Gray Apple Desktop Theme)
  • Improved Intel support

System requirements: Mac OS X 10.0 or later.

System support: PPC/Intel

This desktop theme is provided for free and noncommercial use only. The graphics and icons can only be distributed as freeware.

Parallels Desktop for Mac 2.5.3120

PR: Parallels Desktop for Mac is the first solution for Intel-Macs that give you the flexibility of running Windows on a Mac OS X simultaneously without rebooting. You can use Parallels Desktop for Mac on any Intel-powered iMac, Mac Mini, MacBook, MacBook Pro, & Mac Pro Towers.

Now you can take advantage of important Windows-only software applications like Internet Explorer, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Project, Quicken, Microsoft Visio, Microsoft SharePoint, SQL Server, and more, without giving up the security, comfort and functionality of your Mac!

Why use Parallels Desktop for Mac?

It's Fast!

Parallels Desktop for Mac is the only solution that automatically takes full advantage of Intel Core Duo Virtualization Technology which allows you to run Windows and its applications at full speed.

It's Secure!

Parallels Desktop virtual machines work as isolated files, not partitions, which means they are totally secure and completely isolated from OS X. There is no chance of infecting your Mac with a Windows virus, spyware or malware.

Because Parallels Desktop virtual machine files can be easily compressed by 50% or more with built-in Parallels Compressor technology, you can easily back up your whole Windows virtual machine on a network or even burn it to a CD or DVD.

It's Flexible!

Never experience a media or website compatibility issue again! Use Parallels Desktop for Mac to browse the Internet with Internet Explorer or play movies and mp3's in Windows Media Player.

Stay connected to various devices that are not Mac-compatible, like web cameras, Windows Mobile 5 devices, and USB devices.

Use Parallels Desktop for Mac to connect to your company's corporate network and share documents with your co-workers who are working on Windows, Linux, or Solaris computers.

It's Easy to Use!

We added features in Parallels Desktop for Mac that automatically installs and configures all your hardware drivers for Windows.

We've also included a simple wizard, backed up by easy-to-follow user guides, that enables any user, even a true computer novice, to easily build and configure a virtual machine & quickly install Windows or any other operating system.

Product features:

  • NEW! 64-bit Mac Po towers and iMacs support - no RAM limitations and no need in hardware re-configurations while using Windows and it's applications on your modern Mac
  • NEW! Wide OSes support - full compatibility for OS X "Leopard" & support for Microsoft Windows Vista. Get the full list of supported OSes...
  • NEW! Strong USB support - easily use multi interfaced and isochronous USB devices (including Windows Mobile 2005 and webcams)
  • Portable Support - take your virtual machine anywhere you go! You can copy your whole Windows computer on a CD/DVD and use it on any Parallels enabled computer
  • Keyboard support - use all of the keys on your Mac keyboard, such as the eject CD button, right-left and Shift/Ctrl/Alt (option)/Windows keys, in any virtual machine
  • Unicode path support - name files and paths in national languages
  • Mac OS X performance support - optimize Mac OS X or guest OS performance by switching off the Mac cache function
  • Graphic performance support - enjoy faster, smoother video playback
  • Shared folders performance - open folders and files faster, and transfer data across OSes with almost zero lag
  • Disk management build in tool included - improve virtual machine performance and save storage space by 50% or more with Parallels Compressor tool included - FREE $49.99 value

New in version 2.5.3120 (beta):

  • USB 2.0 support - "Plug and play" popular USB devices like external hard drives, printers, and scanners, and use them at full native speed.
  • Current Build 3094 doesn't support isochronous devices such as web cameras, microphones, etc.
  • Full-feature virtual CD/DVD drive - Burn CDs and DVDs directly in virtual machines, and play any copy-protected CD or DVD just like you would on a real PC
  • Improved Coherence mode - The groundbreaking feature that lets you run Windows applications without seeing Windows just got better! Now you can:
  • Place Windows applications on your Mac desktop or in your application dock. Just click to launch them directly from OS X!
  • Use Command+tab to cycle through Windows and Mac applications simultaneously, and "hide and show" Windows applications just like you would with Mac applications
  • View the Windows Command Console in Coherence mode
  • Use Coherence in Windows 2000, Windows 2003, Windows XP and Windows Vista!
  • Better Boot Camp support - Using your Boot Camp partition in Parallels Desktop is now easier than ever. Beta2's Boot Camp support includes:
  • Full support for FAT32 and NTFS partitions
  • Easy offline configuration. Simply tell Parallels Desktop that you want to create a virtual machine from a Boot Camp Partition and click start. No complicated set up required!
  • No need to re-activate Windows each time you switch between Boot Camp and Parallels. Activate Windows only once inside Parallels and work in both environments

Update Details:

  • IMPORTANT! It is not possible to suspend a Virtual Machine that is connected to Boot Camp as it could result in an unstable system.
  • VERY IMPORTANT! Beta1 (build 3036) users must boot natively into Boot Camp and uninstall Parallels Tools for Boot Camp prior to running it in Beta2 (build 3094).
  • Parallels Transporter Beta2 bundled - migrate your real Windows PC, or existing VMware or Virtual PC VMs to Parallels virtual machines! Learn more about Parallels Transporter Beta2 >>
  • IMPORTANT! Beta1 users MUST upgrade their Transporter package on their Windows source machine before using Parallels Transporter in Beta2. Failing to do so may result in a system crash and loss of data

System requirements: Intel Mac running Mac OS X 10.4.4 or later

System support: Intel

Get Parallels Desktop for Mac for $79.99

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