Ben's blog entry describes it better than I ever could.
Today I have worked towards solving the issues 3 and 4 he mentions. Issue 4 turned out to be an Apple bug.
You guys, Mac lovers, have no life! You should be in the middle of preparing your end-of-the-year celebrations instead of trying out VMware virtual machines on the Mac! Well, I plea guilty too: I spent the rest of the day thanking you for your feedback and responding to it.
Headless virtual machines in Fusion? Check!
One of you was complaining about the fact that Fusion didn't have all the new and nifty features of VMware Workstation 6, in particular the ability to run a virtual machine headless, a typical use scenario if your virtual machine runs a bunch of server processes, for example if it is a virtual appliance.
Well, it turns out that we did build that feature in Fusion, but it is kind of indirectly exposed. We have confidence in our user interface code, but as the saying goes:
No program is completely bug-free until the last user dies.
We knew you guys would push the Fusion user interface and potentially crash it. When that happens, you gentle user are annoyed, and we developers are embarrassed. The last thing we want in that case is to also lose whatever you were doing in your virtual machines.
So we actually implemented the headless feature in Fusion: if the user interface crashes, then we make sure all your virtual machines immediately become headless. That way, all you have to do is restart the user interface, re-open your virtual machines, and you see them exactly where you left them off!
The corollary feature is that if you want to start a virtual machine headless in Fusion, all you have to do is open it up in the user interface, then go to the Apple menu and select the "Force Quit..." item.
This is the design philosophy we have adopted everywhere for Fusion:
- Keep the user interface dead simple and easy to use for users who use a Mac because they just want their computer to work.
- Expose the power of the VMware platform for technical users and developers.