CrossOver Mac Beta The days of virtual machines may be coming to an end with Macs because there are much better solutions available. Mac users can use Boot Camp if they want to run Windows directly on their machine or they can download the CrossOver Mac Beta which will let them directly run their Windows programs in the Mac OS X.

Why is CodeWeavers doing this? It is one step closer to their goal:

CodeWeavers’ goal is to make Unix (including Linux and Mac OS X) a fully Windows-compatible operating system. All Windows applications should be able to be run on Unix: cleanly, harmoniously, within the native environment, and without using an emulator.

If they really get it down pat then there may be no need for Microsoft to create a Mac version of Office anymore. Linux can already run Office 2003 almost perfectly with the hands-on experience that I have had using it.

The other cool thing is that you can vote or pledge money for applications that you want them to make compatible with Linux and Mac OS X.

Here are the top 5 voted applications:

  1. iTunes 6 – 44 votes
  2. Office 2003 – 41 votes
  3. Lotus Notes 7 – 39 votes
  4. Visio 2003 – 38 votes
  5. Outlook 2003 – 37 votes

Here are the top 5 pledges:

  1. Access 97 – $6099.90
  2. Dreamweaver MX 2004 – $4287.25
  3. Flash MX 2004 – $3476.45
  4. Visual FoxPro 8 – $2778.85
  5. QuickBooks Pro – $2449.15

Now you can see what a high demand there is to have these programs run natively on other operating systems other than Windows.

If you want more screenshots then head over to Engadget because they took a ton of them while they were setting it up. The trial version will expire after 30 days but I highly recommend you preorder it if you end up liking it. This is what you’ll get by preordering:

  • a lower upfront price ($39.95 instead of $59.95)
  • a longer support period (15 months instead of 12), and (of course)
  • a free upgrade to CrossOver Mac 6.0 when it is officially released.

Definitely worth the preorder!