When Apple's Boot Camp was announced (software that lets you choose between OS X and Windows XP at startup) I was mightily intrigued.
But--should've known it would happen--a little company called Parallels has come along, with software that enables you to run both *at the same time*.
The software is called Parallels Workstation for Mac OS X, although a better name might be No Reboot Camp. It, too, is a free public beta, available for download from parallels.com. You can pre-order the final version for $40, or pay $50 after its release (in a few weeks, says the company).Run Windows and Mac OS Both at Once - New York Times
Parallels, like Boot Camp, requires that you supply your own copy of Windows. But here's the cool part: with Parallels, unlike Boot Camp, it doesn't have to be XP. It can be any version, all the way back to Windows 3.1 — or even Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris, OS/2 or MS-DOS. All of this is made possible by a feature of Intel's Core Duo chips (called virtualization) that's expressly designed for running multiple operating systems simultaneously.
In the finished version, the company says, you'll be able to work in several operating systems at once. What the heck — install Windows XP three times. If one becomes virus-ridden, you can just delete it and smile.
Related: Parallels, Inc.
Hat tip: Greg.