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Author Topic: End of the line for VMware Workstation?  (Read 1082 times)

xtabber

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End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« on: January 27, 2016, 01:11:58 PM »
Monday, VMware laid off their entire U.S. development staff for Desktop products, which includes Workstation, Player and Fusion.

The company did say that they were moving development for those products to China, which probably means they will keep the products alive as long as they can charge for them, but I don’t expect much more than that.

mwb1100

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2016, 02:10:03 PM »
Well, that's a shame.  It did become difficult to justify spending money on upgrades, but it's still a pretty amazing product.

40hz

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2016, 02:22:32 PM »
Well, if nothing else it'll go a ways towards moving up the timeframe for when the power users finally all start migrating over to Type-1 hypervisors, and get it done once and for all.  ;)

Not necessarily a bad thing if you think about it.  8)

Deozaan

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2016, 02:28:16 PM »
Well, if nothing else it'll go a ways towards moving up the timeframe for when the power users finally all start migrating over to Type-1 hypervisors, and get it done once and for all.  ;)

I would love to run a hypervisor on my machine, but I need full GPU capabilities on Windows, which AFAIK isn't possible. :(


mwb1100

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2016, 08:40:09 PM »
The last time I used a Hypervisor or VirtualBox the host/guest integration wasn't very good.  That's fine if you're using them to have virtual more-or-less  headless servers.

But my typical use is for virtual workstations and  I use drag-n-drop and the shared clipboard extensively between the VMware host and guest.

40hz

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2016, 10:45:12 AM »
I don't know why the GPU support should be lacking with a Type-1. That runs bare metal, and you're running a full OS under that sans any host OS in between. So if the support for the GPU is in your OS instance, you should have access to it. But I'm not that big a workstation type so I'll defer to those who do more with those than me. If you say it's a problem, you'll get no argument from me.

Shared clipboards etc. would be a problem however since in a Type-1 environment, each virtual machine runs completely isolated. But that's the whole idea with a Type-1, so "it's not a bug - it's a feature" as the saying goes.  ;D

Deozaan

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Re: End of the line for VMware Workstation?
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2016, 04:44:47 PM »
I don't know why the GPU support should be lacking with a Type-1. That runs bare metal, and you're running a full OS under that sans any host OS in between. So if the support for the GPU is in your OS instance, you should have access to it. But I'm not that big a workstation type so I'll defer to those who do more with those than me. If you say it's a problem, you'll get no argument from me.

This is a summary of the info I found when I looked into using Xen as a hypervisor sometime last year:

Xen is an hypervisor that runs on metal (the pc / server) and then hosts virtual machines called domains.

A Xen PV domain is a paravirtualized domain, that means the operating system (usually we're talking linux here) has been modified to run under Xen, and there's no need to actually emulate hardware. This should be the most efficient way to go, performance wise.

A Xen HVM domain is hardware emulated domain, that means the operating system (could be Linux, Windows, whatever) has not been modified in any way and hardware gets emulated. This is rather slow, so usually you install PV drivers in the guest os for critical hardware (usually disk and network), so the guest as a whole will run fully virtualized but the most performance-critical pieces of hardware will run paravirtualized. Recent linux systems have pv drivers for both disk and network in the kernel, and there exist various PV drivers for Windows too. With all the development on HVM in recent years there usually is little difference in performance between HVM and PV for standard workloads.

Since Windows is proprietary, it has not been modified to work with Xen. Therefore, it can only be configured under Xen as an HVM, which means all the hardware is emulated and thus slower. This is especially true for non-standard workloads, such as gaming.

Or at least that's my understanding of the info I've found. That said, I'd love to be proven wrong, because I really like the idea of using a hypervisor instead of a bunch of VMs.