I mentioned earlier that I had installed VMWare Fusion on my MacBook. One of my objectives with this was to be able to run Windows Live Writer on my Macintosh for editing this blog.
You might rightly point out that there are plenty of blog editors for the Macintosh, some of them reasonably good. However…I’ve tried several of them, and they don’t work quite as well for my purposes as Live Writer does. So…how did things go?
So far, the results have been mixed, but interesting. Setting up VMWare was pretty straight forward. You need to have a Windows OS install CD and license at hand: I used a Windows XP Home I had. Then, just as with a normal Windows configuration, you need to install all of the patches and updates. That’s one area I made a mistake with (more on that later).
When I launched the installer for the latest Windows Live Writer, I encountered my first problem. The following error appeared:
Windows Live Programs can not be installed on this operating system
Once again I completely misdiagnosed the problem. My first thought was that the issue related to the fact that I am running VMWare rather than Windows natively. I then found references to folks who were running into the same error when trying to install WLW on the 64 bit versions of Windows. Neither was the correct answer.
The solution? Well, I hadn’t properly finished patching Windows XP- Service Pack 2 hadn’t been installed. Once I completed patching, the Windows Live Writer installer worked without a hitch.
Then I had some problems with Windows Live Writer- it’s behavior was a bit odd: paragraphs of text were being formatted strangely, and editing them required double clicking on the blocks. I installed IE7, and once I did that and rebooted WLW seemed to work fine.
In fact…I’m writing this now in WLW running in a VMWare Fusion "Unity" window. In essence, it looks like a Macintosh application. I’ll find out in time how "seamless" this configuration is, but at least on the surface the results are rather impressive.