Parallels Desktop 9 continues in the tradition of previous versions by bridging the gap between Mac and PC environments. Running Windows on your Mac can be as simple as purchasing the Parallels desktop software along with a separate purchase of the full-version Windows OS of your choice, including Windows 8. If your Mac lacks a DVD drive you can download Parallels directly from their website and use their Virtual Machine Wizard to get your virtual environment up and running. Existing virtual environments can be imported as well.
Seamless integration remains a core component. You can easily switch between Mac and PC environments, copy and paste documents, and even launch Windows applications directly from the Mac desktop. Just like Parallels Desktop 8, transitioning between Mac and PC desktops is done without rebooting your machine. You can run apps from both environments side-by-side and expect a smooth transition between the two. Also suited for professionals, business users can run vital Windows applications on their Macs. Considering there are a number of Windows-based office applications that are not yet available on Mac, this is a good solution for power users. With Mac OS X Mountain Lion support, you can access features like Dictation, Mission Control, and Launchpad while running Windows applications; this gives you the feel of running one machine instead of a local and virtual one.
Parallels now also includes: support for Cloud Services: You can sync your favorite cloud services such as iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, Skydrive, and more without the worry of duplicating files—the virtual and local machines work together, creating a single hub for your synced data without the need for mirroring the files. It also includes enhanced Windows 8 support, including a Start menu to enhance usability and navigation of the Windows desktop. You also have the ability to view Windows tile apps in smaller windows rather than full-screen, freeing up desktop real estate for multitasking.
Macbook Pro and MacBook Air users can take advantage of the Power Nap feature in their virtual Windows environment as well. Power Nap keeps your applications up to date while your computer sleeps. In order to use Power Nap you must have an SSD-equipped Macbook Pro or Macbook Air.
Other small features you may appreciate are PDF printer for Windows. When working in any Windows application, you can convert whatever page you’re viewing or using into a PDF document and save it to your Mac desktop. This feature even works with applications that don’t support PDF printing natively. Also useful is Sticky Multi-monitor Setup. Parallels Desktop will retain your display settings when switching to an external monitor. If you’re running full-screen mode in Windows those settings will be transferred when you connect to an external display.
The Security Center gives you access to install complimentary security software updates to secure your PCs from viruses and malware. These updates cover both your Mac and Windows environments, which takes the hassle of going back and forth between each OS looking to see if you’re covered. You can also utilize Parallel’s Thunderbolt and FireWire Support, which lets you access Thunderbolt and FireWire storage devices, even from your Windows environment. You can view and edit storage contents in your Windows virtual environment just as if you were using the Mac OS.
For Mac users that have become accustomed to their interface you can even use Mac-centric gestures, like the dictionary lookup gesture, in your windows apps. There’s even an option for enhanced Mac OS integration for Linux users, because Parallels Desktop 9 doesn’t want to leave anyone behind, apparently.
Parallels Desktop 9 has put forth a notable effort in combining your Windows and Mac experiences. Now you don’t have to make the switch and choose between either one. With Parallels 9, the best of both worlds can exist on one desktop.
At least 700MB of disk space on the boot volume (Macintosh HD) for Parallels Desktop installation plus space to allocate to your virtual machine.
For more information, stop by the B&H SuperStore in New York, speak with a sales professional on the telephone at 1-800-606-6969 or contact us online via Live Chat.