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Apple, Parallels, VMWare and Microsoft

Last week, the buzz around the net exploded with the release of Apple's Boot Camp, which allows Intel Mac users to boot into Windows XP. This was quickly followed by Parallels' release of Workstation 2.1 Beta for Mac OS X which allows users to launch Windows under Mac OS X on Intel Macs.

Parallels has already posted Beta 2 which addresses issues early beta testers have had, and is pricing the finished version at a discounted $39.99 for now.

Meanwhile, another of the large virtualization software companies, VMWare, has a Mac OS X version of their product in testing in labs, according to comments by the CEO (previously rumored)

Virtualization technology allows multiple instances of a computer's operating system to be running at one time. Microsoft also took interest in this technology when it acquired Virtual PC from Connectix back in 2003. The future of Virtual PC remains in question, however. Microsoft has stated it is working on updating Virtual PC for Intel Macs, but has made comments that it will have to be a complete rewrite.

This is like building a brand new version for us, Lefebvre said. Its not just a new operating system, its new hardware, toothis is a really big transition. Its hard to say right now what it will look like or when it will be.