Mac Users worried about being open to viruses by installing Windows XP on to their new intel-based Macs thanks to Apple's new beta Boot Camp shouldn't be according to analyst firm Gartner.

In a report published on the firms website Gartner said:

"All users should ignore any hype about the possibility of exposing the Mac OS to more viruses or worms. The Mac software will be located on another partition within a different file system; thus, running Windows on a Mac will not expose the Mac software to more malware."

But the author, Mike Silver, goes on to warn that

"However, if Mac sales and Apple's market share increase, the Mac OS could potentially become a more attractive target for malware."

He also warned Apple Mac owners about to install their copy of Windows XP on to their new computer that

"Reusing a disk from a Windows PC that they already own would violate the terms of their license."

Because of this Smith doesn't believe that the move to allow people to run Windows on a Mac will have any significant boost to businesses switching to Apple hardware over traditional cheaper PC manufacturers.

"Enterprises and midsize businesses without a particular business need to fulfill are unlikely to pay a premium price for Mac hardware or support an extra operating system. Thus, Gartner does not believe that Boot Camp will make Macs significantly more attractive to enterprises outside of Apple's traditional strongholds in the graphic arts, video production, scientific research and education."

Although currently only in beta status at the moment, Apple is expected to include a version of Boot Camp, within the Mac OS X "Leopard" release due out later this year.