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Two Packages Put Windows On The Mac Pro

Apple's Mac OS X operating system gets more and more compatible with the PC world with each new release -- it supports both general industry standards and many proprietary de facto standards, and it integrates cleanly with networks, back-end systems, authentication, and authorization systems like Active Directory, network storage, and other historically PC-centric enterprise assets. In fact, an increasing number of key enterprise features have become significantly easier to administer on a Mac than a PC.

Nevertheless, there is an entire range of products that require not just interoperability, but need an actual Windows operating system to operate, and it is this area that Boot Camp and Parallels Desktop for Mac both address.


Product Info

Boot Camp

Apple Computer, Inc.

Price: Free

Parallels Desktop for Mac
Parallels, Inc.

Price: $79.99

Back in the spring, I took a close look at both
Apple's Boot Camp
, which allows Windows XP to run at native speeds on Intel-based Macs, and Parallel's Workstation 2.1 which, while slower, allows Windows to run in a window inside Mac OS X, instead of requiring a reboot. At the time, both solutions were quite new -- Parallels had just come out of beta, and Boot Camp was (and still is) in beta -- but both options for running Windows on Macs proved themselves to be well worth considering, even in that early state.

Six months later, I was able to try them both again, this time on a new Mac Pro. Besides a recent change in name from "Parallels Workstation for Mac OS X" to "Parallels Desktop for Mac," I found that the latest version of the Parallels Mac virtualizer (Build 1970) has garnered a substantial increase in speed and additional maturity, but Boot Camp 1.1.2 (beta), while still getting the edge for speed, compatibility and graphics capability, needed a workaround to operate on the Mac Pro.

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