Not one of my usual topics but last weekend I treated myself to a 13” MacBook Pro, after wanting one for a long time I finally gave in and purchased one. Having never used a Mac before, apart from wasting time in the Apple shop I didn’t really know what to expect from OSX. From a day to day perspective I haven’t really missed any elements of Windows apart from Microsoft Live Writer for blogging. I absolutely love iPhoto and have managed to edit my RAW photos from my Canon 40D with ease.
Where only using Mac OSX has been a little more tricky is using it for work related tasks, such as MS-CRM (Which Required IE), VI Client etc etc.
My first way around this was to use the Open View Client for Mac which meant I could easily connect to VMware View and access an XP desktop. >> http://code.google.com/p/vmware-view-open-client/
All well and good but means you need internet access when you need these applications, you need a view server and would make using something like Powershell at a customer site impossible.
So being the VMware fan that I am I had to install VMware Fusion.
Having used Workstation a lot on Windows I knew what to expect but the way VMware have integrated this with Mac OSX using the unity feature is fantastic. When using Unity applications run as if they were running natively on OSX appearing on the dock as expected with any Mac application.
Windows Live Writer on Mac OSX
What was the most pleasant surprise for me is how it handles file associations for files within the Mac file system that need to be ran from an application in your Windows VM.
For example I am a great fan of DropBox and this has meant I have a large number of Microsoft office files available to me on my Mac, without Office on my Mac they aren’t much use to me. Until I realised opening an MS Word file on my Mac, opened the document in Word on my VM via unity.
Double Click on Document
Word 2010 opens as if it was a native OSX application, with the document.
So there you have it, VMware Fusion has made my switch to Mac much easier and I’m always happy to be playing with a another VMware product. Probably not breaking news for all of you that are already using this but maybe will help people that are thinking about switching at the moment. Don’t threat those of you that follow my blog for server virtualisation, normal service will be resumed next post.