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VMwareVirtual machine software from VMware, Inc., Palo Alto, CA (www.vmware.com) that allows multiple copies of the same operating system or several different operating systems to run in the same x86-based machine. For years, VMware has been the leader in virtualization software (see virtual machine).
Client PC Versions
VMware Workstation supports Windows, Linux and Unix guest operating systems. VMware ACE is a deployment tool for propagating virtual machines created in VMware Workstation to other PCs. A user's desktop (OS and applications) can be stored on a USB drive for transport.
VMware Fusion for the Mac
VMware Fusion runs Windows, Linux and other guest operating systems on the Mac (see VMware Fusion).
VMware Player - Try It First
The VMware Player runtime engine executes applications packaged as a virtual appliance without requiring the full VMware in the computer (see VMware Player).
vSphere Server Versions
vSphere is VMware's brand for its ESX and ESXi products. ESX is the company's flagship server virtualization product, which includes tools for datacenter management. For example, VMware's Vmotion enables virtual machines to be migrated live from one server to another.
ESXi (formerly ESX Server 3i) is a compact version that was designed for both servers and embedded devices. ESXi eliminates the console operating system (COS) in ESX.
Free VMware Server
VMware Server (formerly GSX Server) is a free product. However, VMware Server requires Windows or Linux to work, whereas ESX and ESXi are stand-alone virtual machine monitors (hypervisors) that directly control the hardware.
Thin Clients - Virtual Desktop Manager
Under the umbrella of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) VMware's Virtual Desktop Manager (VDM) provides a desktop virtualization environment for thin clients. Each user's desktop resides as a VMware virtual machine in the server. See thin client and virtual machine.