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Contributor
Contributor

Wishlist for VMware Fusion 4...

Given that Fusion 4 is probably not too far off, I thought I'd create a topic where everyone can post their wishlist for the next major version.

For me, I'm reasonably happy with the functionality of Fusion 3.1.2, so I'm not after any major features/changes (although that may change the more I think about what I want/need from Fusion), but below is my list...

1) Keep the stability which I've come to appreciate from Fusion (I know people bang on about how fast Parallels is supposed to be, but I have tried version 5 and 6 and haven't been able to get a stable VM - it's either really slow, or hangs).

2) If they can they can squeeze more performance out of it (which I hope they can), then the faster the better.

3) Proper full support for multi-threaded CPU's. Currently, the multi-threaded part of a CPU core is not utilised, thereby wasting processing power.

3) GUI interface for various tasks. For example, mounting physical disks/partitions in VM's - I know you can use rawdiskCreator, but there should be a simple GUI for selecting the partitions/disks you want in the VM, with Fusion handling the rest. Another example is disabling snapshots for virtual disks - again it can be done by manually adding a setting into the vmx file, but there should be a checkbox setting in a GUI.

4) Improved performance of shared folders. When accessing a shared folder, I get poor speeds and high CPU usage. In Parallels, it's faster with almost zero CPU usage.

5) Fixes for all bugs I've reported.

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Expert
Expert

BTW, will there be a more or less public beta for Fusion 4 (as with previous versions)?

Well, probably only time will tell: anyway, if there will be a beta, it should be rather imminent...

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Expert
Expert

Virtual SATA disks (BTW, isn't SCSI - and even IDE - rather old?) could be an interesting option (Parallels Desktop - and also VirtualBox, IIRC - already has them).

And a tabbed interface, à la Workstation (but also Mac-like, at the same time): that would rock!

And many other very good things, of course... Smiley Happy :smileycool:

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Contributor
Contributor

I would so like to see the ability to be able to create private switched networks for things like creating a testing lab.

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Champion
Champion

1) Performance.

2) GUI options for more features (menu bar selection is at the top of the list, disk management).

3) Performance.

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Community Manager
Community Manager

Thanks for the feedback everyone, it doesn't fall on deaf ears.

Anything else anyone would like to see in an future major release?

I'm all ears 😃

- Michael Roy - Product Line Manager: Fusion & Workstation
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Immortal
Immortal

Michael Roy wrote: Anything else anyone would like to see in an future major release?

Yes, all the features in Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac (except Compressor) that VMware Fusion doesn't have!

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The emulated disk bus doesn't really matter once you've installed VMware Tools, and SCSI is simpler to emulate for generic drivers.

As for tabs, please no.  Macs have vastly superior window management to Windows (ironic, isn't it?).  With Exposé, tabs are largely unnecessary.  They solve the issue of multiple similar documents in web browsers, but that's about the only place where they work.  As an option, sure, but it should not be the standard.

I would like something analogous to Workstation's Teams.  Specifically, a single play button to start multiple VMs.  The team networks would be a nice bonus, but being able to group VMs would be really useful for me.  Ultimately, I would like Workstation to make its way to Mac OS, but I don't expect that for quite some time.

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

well, since you asked,

A simple interface to the "pause" function. This was discussed before, and "pause" was deemed too complicated for mac fusion users (but not workstation users). But really, it is ok, we'll get it.

Virtualized firewire and SATA interfaces.

The same kind of "transparent" virtual audio card that exists in workstation. (Fusion seems to have a slower "pipe," but the two hosts I use are not fairly comparable (2.4 GHz core 2 duo MBP host vs 3.6 GHz 6 core AMD linux host).

A more informative "vControl Panel" that describes all of the virtual devices and their hardware hooks (maybe organized in a table of check boxes as an option (e.g., to switch among hardware sound cards), including network drives and their ip addresses.

Convince Apple to allow osx virtual machines and resizing windowsby dragging along any edge or corner. :smileylaugh:

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Contributor
Contributor

For me the 2 great features to include would be:

  • Compatibility with VMware Workstation Encrypted VMs
  • Ability to use and create Linked Clones just like in VMware Workstation

Then after that, I would want VMware to just make Fusion 4 as compatible and feature complete as VMware Workstation (except for the ACE / ThinApp stuff, that can come at the end imho, it's cool but not as crucial to me as the 2 features I've mentioned)

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Expert
Expert

I forgot one very important thing (at least, IMHO): better and more feature-rich VMware Tools for Linux and Mac OS X Server.

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

headless mode.

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

For both Fusion and Workstation, better  mouse wheel responses (e.g. horizontal scroll).

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Champion
Champion

A couple of additional things:

1) Better release of memory when Fusion.app is closed

2) Faster shrink process

3) GUI function specifically for splitting disks into 2 GB files

4) Probably not realistic, but I'd love to have the ability to apply all critical MS update across all VM's automatically (saves me having to boot, update, reboot, etc, all of them)....hey, you asked for a wishlist 🙂

5) Fix the runaway vm-natd issue.

6) Provide an option to truly virtualize CPUs to avoid reactivation on Win7 when migrating from Core2Duo to i7 (or future chips).

7) Ability to disable all host integration globally, rather than having to set it on each new VM created.

And some of the most common threads in the forum (a lot of these are relatively easy to do - just UI warnings):

1) Warnings when starting a vm (or changing the settings) with too many cores configured for the system config (i.e. more than 1 core on a 1-CPU system.   Ditto - warnings when the VM has too much memory allocated based on the current free memory in the system.  Similar warning when trying to give more than 2GB and 1CPU to XP (i.e. XP doesn't use either well).

2) Warnings about trying to backup VM's with Time Machine (i.e. when creating a new VM or starting Fusion, prompt the user to exclude VM's from TM).  Get that in the forums all the time too.

3) Built-in backup capability to replace #6.

4) Detection of OEM install media and warning regarding microsoft licensing policies

5) Warning in VMWare tools if incompatible AV installed or system restore active (i.e. may degrade performance).

Oh, and one particular PITA:

Fix the forums so that email notifications on threads are OFF by default.

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Community Manager
Community Manager

Everyone has some great suggestions here, and while I can't comment on specifics, I'm really happy about what's coming down the road.

A couple of things I wanted to note:

1) We're not trying to have a feature-race/parity with Parallels, we have a different direction that we want to go in.

3) GUI function specifically for splitting disks into 2 GB files

The GUI already does this... or are you referring to something different thn what's in the Settings > Hard Disks window?

4) Probably not realistic, but I'd love to have the ability to apply all critical MS update across all VM's automatically (saves me having to boot, update, reboot, etc, all of them)....hey, you asked for a wishlist 🙂

I did ask 😉 ... sadly, that's very much not possible.  (Microsoft prevents 3rd parties from distributing security updates, iirc)

6) Provide an option to truly virtualize CPUs to avoid reactivation on Win7 when migrating from Core2Duo to i7 (or future chips).

We do 'truely' virtualize a CPU.  That's what VT is for. The activation comes from the rest of the virtual hardware ('base system device', graphics card, nic, etc), and that is stuff that has to be emulated as there's no hardware virtualization for those components (it has to happen at the physical level).

4) Detection of OEM install media and warning regarding microsoft licensing policies

We do this currently for P2V/Migration Assistant (which is where most of the issues tend to come from), but that's not a bad idea at all.

I don't have time to respond to _everything_ in this thread (even in cases where I'm able to say anything), but I at least wanted to touch on what we've already got out there for these points.

So, please keep the feedback coming, this is great and you guys are awesome 😃

- Michael Roy - Product Line Manager: Fusion & Workstation
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Champion
Champion

1) Sorry, looking for an option to break apart existing VMDK's without having to use VMDiskManager.

2) My Win7 VM's all detected an 'i7 CPU' when I migrated to my new machine, and reactivated.  Are they supposed to know what kind of CPU I'm on?

Thanks for sharing what you can.  I completely agree with not wanting to get into a feature/function race.

Along those lines, there's a couple of things I would NOT change:

1) Ability to limit host integration (or conversely, don't force host integration)

2) Rock-solid stability

3) Great support

🙂

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Immortal
Immortal

1) Sorry, looking for an option to break apart existing VMDK's without having to use VMDiskManager.

Can you be more specific about what you'd like to see? Fusion 3's UI lets you split vmdks, and there's also vmware-vdiskmanager. What more do you want?

2) My Win7 VM's all detected an 'i7 CPU' when I migrated to my new machine, and reactivated.  Are they supposed to know what kind of CPU I'm on?

Yes, this is normal and expected. Guests are (most of the time) actually running on the physical CPU. It's possible to use certain vmx flags to change the guest-visible capabilities of a CPU, but they're more for vMotion compatability and may not do what you want.

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Champion
Champion

Ahh, I guess I haven't done it in a while - didn't know the V3 GUI would do that to an existing disk.

In general, the command line is OK, but I'd rather avoid the re-learning curve on those once-in-a-blue-moon activities - ditto on hacking preferences files for things like the menu bar).

I didn't realize that the CPU wasn't virtualized, so that behavior makes sense.  Thanks!

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

How about an on-the-fly compression-decompression for suspend mode? The goal is to speed up suspends and un-suspends. I guess users of flash drives wouldn't care, but my bet is that a quick compression algorithm could help 'cause there are likely many 0s in the vmem.

OK, a quick (and not optimal) test showed my 1.6GB vmem filed compressed 10x into 164 MB. Just a thought.

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Big big user of fusion and love it.

1) I think the most requested thing I have is make the function keys become native when in vm mode. What I mean by that is in mac the f1 / f2 keys control brightness. In VM make them be normal f1/f2 keys and so on. WOULD BE ideal. I know there is an API to switch them, maybe do it on active window? Would be very cool. Still allow FN+F key to reverse or change this.

2) Allow passthrough of certain types of keys when ignoring mac keys. For instance, I always switch ALT and CMD buttons so they are more windows like. But ALT+TAB switches mac windows. I know you can in preferences disable it altogether and just have all keys pass to windows, but I don't want that. Certain ones like volume, dashboard and some custom-mapped keys i want working. The only ones I don't want are CMD+TAB passing through to the mac. Simple setting to not allow mac to handle the CMD+TAB keys would make me love this thing on a whole new level. That way I can use my custom mappings to spaces, etc

3) Create some way for time machine backups to work. Maybe create your own backup software that deduplicates the vms so the time machine doesn't fill to 100% in a day with 6 machines. Even what parallels does is acceptable (autocreate daily snapshots, but remove from snapshot the currently running file so that it's not backed up since it's probably corrupted if writing on the fly). It still fills up since every 7 days it pushes everything back to the original vm, but maybe think of something new.

Oh and thanks for having good support! I tried parallels and after 12 tickets for the same problem, I'm back to vmware.

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