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Parallels Tools Overview

Parallels Tools are a suite of special utilities that help you use your virtual machines in the most comfortable and efficient way. With Parallels Tools, you can move the mouse seamlessly between the virtual machine and your Mac, change the virtual machine's screen resolution by simply resizing its window, synchronize your virtual machine's time and date settings with the time settings of the host computer, share your Mac's disks and folders with its virtual machines, copy text and drag and drop objects from Mac OS to a virtual machine and vice versa.

Parallels Tools are available for the most popular Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X operating systems, and include the utilities listed below. All utilities supported by your guest OS are installed in your virtual machine as a single package when you install Parallels Tools.

Utility

Available for

Description

Mouse Synchronization Tool

Windows

Linux

Mac OS X

Mouse Synchronization Tool captures the mouse input in the virtual machine each time the pointer moves over its window and automatically releases the input when the pointer moves outside the window.

Time Synchronization Tool

Windows

Linux

Mac OS X

Time Synchronization Tool enables you to customize your virtual machine time settings. You can:

  • Automatically synchronize the time settings of your virtual machine with your Mac time settings.
  • Set up and maintain the time difference between your Mac and your virtual machine.

Drag-and-Drop Tool

Windows

Drag-and-Drop Tool allows dragging and dropping files between your virtual machines and Mac OS.

Clipboard Synchronization Tool

Windows

Linux

Clipboard Synchronization Tool enables you to easily exchange texts between:

  • the virtual machine and your Mac.
  • different virtual machines irrespective of the guest operating systems installed in them.

To copy and paste text, you should use the standard procedure for the current operating system. For example, to copy some text in the Windows guest OS, select the text, and press Ctrl+C. To paste this text in Mac OS X, press Cmd+V, or select Paste from the shortcut menu.

Dynamic Resolution Tool

Windows

Linux

Mac OS X

Dynamic Resolution Tool enables you to work with dynamic resolution. When you resize the guest OS window by dragging its lower right corner, the guest OS window resolution changes automatically.

Shared Folders Tool

Windows

Linux

Mac OS X

Shared Folders Tool enables you to share Mac folders with the virtual machine and vice versa. With this tool, you can access your Mac folders from the virtual machine and virtual machine folders from Mac OS X.

Coherence Tool

Windows

Linux

The Coherence tool allows you to work with your Windows or Linux applications like if they were Mac applications. It hides the virtual machine's window leaving only guest OS and Mac applications visible.

Shared Profile Tool

Windows

Shared Profile Tool enables you to share your Mac desktop, pictures, documents, downloads, music and videos with your virtual machine, which allows you to access them right from Windows.

Shared Applications Tool

Windows

Shared Applications Tool enables you to specify default applications for certain types of files, so that you can open some types of files in Windows applications by default, and others - in Mac OS.

Shared Internet Applications Tool

Windows

Shared Internet Applications Tool enables you to specify default Internet browsers, including those installed in the virtual machine, for different types of Internet pages. For example, you may set the Internet pages to open in your default Mac OS X Internet browser, and FTP pages to open in your virtual machine Internet browser.

SmartMount

Windows

Linux

Mac OS X

SmartMount automatically detects volumes connected to your Mac and makes them available to the virtual machine as well.

Printing Tool

Windows

Printing Tool allows you to synchronize the host and guest OS printers.

Tray Integration Tool

Windows

Tray Integration Tool allows you to use Windows tray icons in the Mac menu bar.

Parallels Tools are located on disc images that are installed together with Parallels Desktop. There is a separate Parallels Tools disc image for each type of the supported guest operating systems.

  • prl-tools-win.iso - disc image with Parallels Tools for Windows guest operating systems.
  • prl-tools-lin.iso - disc image with Parallels Tools for Linux guest operating systems.
  • prl-tools-mac.iso - disc image with Parallels Tools for Mac OS X guest operating systems.

These disc images can be found in the following location on your Mac: <username>/Applications/Parallels Desktop/Contents/Resources/Tools.