Virtualization Product Choices

110 pts.
Data Center management
Linux Distributions
Microsoft Windows XP
Virtualization technologies
I will be setting up my new system in a couple of weeks. I'll be running CentOS 5 on a quad core AMD Opteron. I'm going to run Windows XP as a guest OS, and possibly 1 or more Linux distros. Does anyone have any suggestions? I am currently considering Xen or Virtualbox, leaning towards Xen.

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From my experience, XEN has been the best. I have only done very limited virtualization, but XEN has handled all virtualization we have done thusfar. This includes XP, Vista, and a few Linux Distros as well.

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  • Nopius
    I recommend you to try all available choices before making decision. Xen is a CPU virtualization and is the most 'lightweight'. Currently there are 2 major Xen implementations: - open source (included in some Linux distributions) - commercial XenDesktop Express (with free version available for up to 2xCPU sockets, 4G RAM, 4x guest OSes): Commercial version should be more Windows-guest friendly. It has unified 'Virtualization Management Console' and most easy to use. I have no experience with Xen and Windows guest (because my CPU doesn't have virtualization features). I used open source Xen on Linux with Linux guest - it was very stable. VirtualBox is a hardware virtualization and quite heavy. I'm using it now for running all my guest OSes, sometimes it's quite slow, but faster than vmware. I have no problems with it on Windows guest. There are also 2 VirtualBox implementations: open source edition (VirtualBox OSE) and commercial (just called VirtualBox, it's also free but only in binaries): Making NIC work on guest at the same network segment as host is a little tricky, but possible. On commercial version there are tools for network configuration, that are absent on OSE, so I recommend you commercial.
    115 pointsBadges:
  • Gilly400
    Hi, Are there many other alternatives worth looking at? Regards, Martin Gilbert.
    23,730 pointsBadges:
  • Virtualaleph
    let's try ESXi --> it's free and very complete: no other product can compete with vmware (IMO). Manlio My virtualization Blog
    65 pointsBadges:

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