Parallels Desktop 5 Gets Released

Not to be outdone by VMware Fusion 3.0, Parallels has released the latest version of Parallels Desktop today. In a press release issued early this morning, they highlight many of the new features in this release:

Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac introduces more than 70 new features and enhancements, offering a computing experience that is:


  • Full support for Aero in Windows Vista and 7 through Windows WDDM driver, including Aero Flip 3D
  • Virtual machine size automatically optimized for best performance with Parallels Compressor
  • Improved performance for Linux guest OS from KVM paravirtualization

“The excellent 3D graphics performance of Parallels Desktop for Mac makes it Autodesk’s preferred Mac virtualization software for customers who choose to run AutoCAD or our other design and engineering software on the Mac,” said Andrew Mackles, Director of AutoCAD Product Management at Autodesk.  “We are excited about the further graphics enhancements in Parallels Desktop 5 for Mac and the potential to improve the customer experiences.”


  • A more Mac-like experience in their Windows applications through Apple Trackpad Gestures technology (pinch, swipe, rotate and more), horizontal scrolling and the application of Full Screen active corners and curl page effect
  • Copy & Paste fidelity for formatted text and complete layouts including images, even between Windows and Linux guest OSs
  • Freedom and flexibility to run Windows and Mac applications across multiple monitors

More Powerful…

  • 7 times better graphic performance for games and 3D applications than the previous version with Direct X 9Ex with Shader Model 3 and OpenGL 2.1 support
  • Superior graphics performance for Linux guests through OpenGL 2.1 support
  • Full hardware resources can be utilized with support for 8 virtual CPUs, 64 bit Windows and Snow Leopard Server 64 bit
  • Easily move PCs (including Windows 7) and 3rd party virtual machines to the Mac  with the enhanced Parallels Transporter

It really sounds like they’ve put something together to go to war with Fusion 3.0. Hopefully they have this nailed down as the last time that Parallels came out with software, they ran into accusations of shipping buggy software, accusations of shipping pre-release code among other things that created a major public relations nightmare for them. Hopefully this time will be different.

Parallels Desktop 5 is out today and I plan on downloading a copy of it and putting it head to head against Fusion 3. I’ve been using Parallels Desktop for a couple of years now, but I’ve been experimenting with Fusion 3 lately. It will be interesting to see who comes out on top.

One Response to “Parallels Desktop 5 Gets Released”

  1. Two items: VirtualBox, free!

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