Parallels Issues Release Candidate of Virtual Machine — Parallels Desktop, a virtual machine environment for Mac OS X that runs operating systems that require an Intel processor (such as Microsoft Windows XP) has reached the release candidate stage, a point where all bugs should be fixed or classified as not worth fixing. Thanks no doubt to the high profile it garnered following Apple’s beta release of Boot Camp, the company said it had over 100,000 beta testers. The release candidate is available now as a 21.5 MB download. Although we normally don’t cover pre-release software in TidBITS, it’s worth noting that Parallels is still offering $10 off the $50 retail price for the product if you order before the actual 1.0 version appears.
Whereas Boot Camp will install only Windows XP Service Pack 2, and a generic Intel computer might balk at older operating systems or have other limitations, virtual machines such as Parallels Desktop can handle almost anything, including IBM OS/2, Windows 95, various versions of DOS, and the parade of Linux, Unix, and BSD versions. [GF]