Set Virtualbox machine to separate desktop space in OSX Lion



One of new features in OSX Lion that I found very helpful is the icon at top right corner of every window. When you click it, the application will automatically open in a new desktop space. You can easily switch between working application, especially if you use a track pad or magic mouse.

Unfortunately many applications are not natively support this feature yet. It is a bit annoying that to switch between application you have to use a lot minimize-maximize icon, or run them in smaller windows then switch manually. This is not a problem anymore if you have upgraded to version 10.7.2. There is a new great feature answers this problem that I have been waiting for. Now you can manually manage spaces, rearrange them as you like easily.

One of example application that perfectly fit for this feature is virtual server application. Ideally every OS is running in separate desktop window space. You will feel really like working in different environment when you switch between each machine as if you have many dedicated machines. Since I use VirtualBox, I will show you how to do it in VirtualBox. The latest version of VirtualBox still not supports this feature.

Open VirtualBox, run your virtual machine, don’t change the window to fullscreen, after it is completely running, open Mision Control. You will see all opened windows, and opened desktops (with smaller window) at the top of the screen. Drag the virtual machine window that you wish to move to the top right area until a new window with “+” (plus) sign appear, then release your mouse to drop there. This action will create new desktop window. You can rearrange the order of opened desktops. Click the desktop that running the virtual machine, from there you can activate to full screen mode.

To remove the desktop, open the Mission Control, move your cursor to the desktop window that you want to remove, you will see the remove “X” icon. Click it to remove.  You can save your preferences in Mission Control Preference.  Open System Preferences, select Mission Control, set to Automatically rearrange spaces based on most recent use.

Manually rearrange full-screen apps, spaces in OS X Lion 10.7.2