Art Alexion on 5 Dec 2009 12:15:42 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] Virtual Setup Suggestions Wanted

My experience is with VMWare in the enterprise, and kvm/qemu and VirtualBox on 
the desktop.

On Saturday 05 December 2009 12:23:59 Casey Bralla wrote:
> I'm looking for suggestions from the group on which hypervisor to
>  use.   here  are my current thoughts:
> Virtualbox
> 1.  I already know it well from the desktop version
> 2.  I could use the open-sourced version, so no licensing issues
> 3.  Requires a full GUI to run under (at least to run it easily)
> 4.  Requires a normal Linux distro to hold the hypervisor

The more I use this, the more I like it.  Easy to use, and "just works".  As 
fast as kvm on my desktop, but more stable and easier to use.  It also 
supports a lot of stuff I could never get to work in kvm.

> VMWare Server
> 1.  Not open source, but free, and likely to remain available for a good
>  while 2.  I'm not that familiar with it
> 3.  Requires a normal Linux distro to hold the hypervisor

Don't bother.  For what you want, use ESXi.  The VMWare stuff, even the free 
ESXi runs very well as long as they aren't broken by host kernel updates.  The 
ESXi host eliminates the need for a full blown host OS with that potential.

> Xen
> 1.  I'm not at all familiar with it
> 2.  Would need a new CPU ($$ - I've got old hardware) to enable it to run 
> without a separate Linux distro as hypervisor
> 3.  Doesn't produce a "pure" virtual machine unless you have a modern CPU, 
> which I don't have at the moment

No experience.  When demoed at Plug North a few months ago, it seemed even 
more tedious than kvm.

> 1.  I'm not familiar with it at all

QEMU without the kernel virtualization provided by kvm or kquemu is really 
slow in my experience.  I really liked kvm until I tried VirtualBox.  Things 
like clipboard sharing and not having to escape the mouse and keyboard are 
nice in VBox.  VBox makes it really easy to access host shares.  I found these 
features lacking in kvm.

But VBox seems better for desktop virtualization, and you want to virtualize 
your servers.  I'd go with ESXi.

Art Alexion

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