[CentOS] VMWare vs. KVM - recommendations?

Ross Walker rswwalker at gmail.com
Tue Mar 30 02:25:22 UTC 2010

On Mar 29, 2010, at 10:01 PM, MHR <mhullrich at gmail.com> wrote:

> Okay, I'm being noisy today.
> I have VMWare Server 1.0.8 installed on my CentOS desktop, and it runs
> my XP and CentOS guests just fine, though I don't use them much.
> I'm considering moving to either VMWare Server 2.0 or switching to KVM
> instead, mainly because VMWS 1 is now obsolete and also because its
> limitations on video configurations is really annoying - I have a 22"
> 1680x1050 LCD monitor, hoping to upgrade sometime in the
> not-too-distant future to a 23 or 24" display with full HD
> (1920x1080), but VMWS 1 does not support any wide-screen
> configurations at all.  I tend to use on-screen real estate to maximum
> benefit, and the 1152x864 maximum useful size I have now is just too
> small for me, so I'm thinking maybe it's time to upgrade to something
> newer/better.
> I've seen some of the horror stories about problems with VMWare 2.0,
> which is not at all encouraging, and I've taken a look at the Red Hat
> Virtualization guides (the 5.4 one that's online in html only) and
> also a PDF version for 5.2 that I found somewhere, and it _looks_
> complicated.  (One of the main benefits of VMWare Server that I really
> liked was that it is fairly easy to use and relatively low
> maintenance, if it works, and 1.0.8 works just fine, except for the
> screen issue.)  OTOH, the built-in nature of KVM is really appealing,
> and if it works as well as other features of CentOS/RH/Linux, it would
> be nice to be able to avoid the separate upgrade and
> re-build-the-drivers-vmware-config.pl annoyance every time a new
> kernel comes along.  I'm a big fan of well-integrated software,
> especially in this area (virtualization).
> One question I had that overrides most other considerations is how to
> transfer my existing XP VM over to whichever new underlying system I
> choose - is that even possible, or do I have to go through all the
> reinstallation pain yet another time?  If I have to go that route,
> I'll probably opt for kvm and take that plunge so I can do it once and
> never again (ok, that was not supposed to be funny... :-).
> Recommendations?

For simplicity and reliability I'd give virtualbox a try, especially  
if your talking limited # of machines and fancy displays.


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