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Sun's VirtualBox hits 5 million downloads

The virtual-machine software, which enables users to run Vista on a Mac, is picking up steam. Perhaps this is when the company realizes its open-source vision.

I didn't pay much attention to VirtualBox when Sun Microsystems first acquired Innotek, but RedMonk's Michael Coté just posted an interview and demo of the software, and it's very cool.

In a few clicks, you can see VirtualBox create a Vista instance and run it on the Mac. There are many options for virtualization at this point, but I would expect Sun to make this its weapon of choice (versus Xen), since it owns it and can tweak it for Solaris.

On the Mac, I'm not sure it's any better than Parallels, but it is open-source, which should be very appealing for many users.

VirtualBox is a free download available under the General Public License, or GPL.