Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a 500 GB hard drive on my MacBook Pro. I have OS X 10.7 (Lion) on my main partition and Windows 7 Ultimate on a secondary partition. Because I have older applications that I would like to run in OS X 10.5 (Leopard), I was thinking of creating an additional partition and install either Leopard on it. This raises the following questions:

  • What are the license restrictions on doing this type of install if I own all the software?
  • What are the license restrictions on using virtualization tools like VMware Fusion to access these partitions? I have read the only OS X Leopard Server was allowed to run virtualized, but I cannot seem to find an authoritative answer on this. I do not have Leopard Server, but regular Leopard.
  • Are these license restrictions different in Snow Leopard?

And then, there are the technical questions, like: Does VMWare even allow for me to access, say virtualized Lion from Leopard or virtualized Leopard from Lion? I know I can get to the Windows partition from either one, but I have never tried any OS X virtualized. What are your thoughts? Thanks.

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Legally, you can only run OS X Server in a virtual machine for 10.5 and 10.6. With Lion, they allowed regular OS X installations to run in up to two virtual machines. VMWare Fusion does support Leopard and Snow Leopard Server virtual machines (but not yet Lion), but I don't know if it will let you use the same installation both booted from disk and in a virtual machine.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.