Other good news is a possible licensing change that could once again ease the virtualization restrictions placed around Mac OS X. The latest reports show that OS X 10.7 is blurring the lines between OS X Server and OS X Client, and this new release comes with a less restricted EULA:
(iii) to install, use and run up to two (2) additional copies or instances of the Apple Software within virtual operating system environments on each Mac Computer you own or control that is already running the Apple Software
According to this line, users should be able to run up to two additional instances of OS X Lion on the same machine without the need to purchase extra licenses from Apple. Presumably, this would take place with existing virtualization hypervisors like VMware Fusion, Parallels for Mac, and Oracle VirtualBox.
Being able to run multiple copies of Lion on the same machine will help users verify that a software update from Apple doesn't cause compatibility issues with existing software applications. It will also help with having a known-good environment for testing purposes or for trying out new applications in a controlled manner.
But it remains a mystery whether users will be allowed to virtualize a copy of the Snow Leopard client, so they can still run older applications that may not be compatible after upgrading to Lion.
Hopefully, virtualization pressure from consumers will push operating system and software manufacturers to keep adjusting and changing their licensing policies to make them more virtualization-friendly. This looks like another great step coming out of Apple, but there is still a lot of room to grow.
This article, "Mac OS X Lion expected to further ease Apple's virtualization restrictions," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in virtualization at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.