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I have a Mac, and I want to be able to run multiple versions of OS X separately so I can test my applications under the different versions. I have two questions:

  1. Is there any sort of virtualization that I can use, like vmware, to run OS X in a VM on a mac? I know you can't do it on a PC, but I'm specifically interested in running different versions of the OS on a mac.

  2. Where can I get older versions of the OS to install? I have 10.5 on CD, but that's it.

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jul 11 '11 at 20:05

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Noteworthy for asking questions about that on Super User: How should we act upon “Install OS X as virtual machine” questions? –  slhck Jul 11 '11 at 20:55

3 Answers 3

The license for earlier versions of OS X only permit virtualization of OS X Server. VMware Fusion will do this. I don't know about Parallels.

Because the Server components are an add-on to OS X Lion, Apple has changed the license to permit virtualization without the Server components.

VMware checks if the install image is Server and they'll need to modify that check for Lion.

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1) Oracle VirtualBox comes with Mac OS support for VMs.

2) You will have to buy any editions after version 7 (I think, off the top of my head). That is the oldest version made freely available. After that you'll have to use eBay or buy directly from Apple.

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SheepShaver might be helpful for you too. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SheepShaver –  E. Rodriguez Jul 11 '11 at 20:08

Rumor has it that this will be allowed with Lion, it's also rumored that Lion will be released in about two weeks.

But I don't have access to Lion, so I don't have first hand knowledge.

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