nullstream weblog - VMware Player

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VMware Player

Cool Tech

October 20, 2005 01:01 AM PST

VMware has a free new product called VMware Player. This allows you to 'play' precreated virtual machines on Windows or Linux. (You need VMware workstation to create virtual machines.) What's cool about this is that it should allow you to test drive Linux distro flavors in an easy and safe way. I think this method is preferable over a live CD since it loads faster and I don't have to reboot my machine. I can also see this as being useful for testing apps and OS's as you can just give someone the entire VM as a repro case. There are a few VMs up on their site already. I expect more to come.

For grins I tried out their 'browser applicance VM.' This is basically a stripped down version of Ubuntu Hoary. (Yes you just caught me running Linux again.) The performance was pretty snappy on my AMD64 box. I couldn't get the sound to work though. I installed real player to see how the video performance was - not great but better than I expected for running under VM. I don't have the root password though so I couldn't get it properly installed and working as a firefox plug in. - Anyhow, worth checking out. Both Novell and Redhat have VMs of their latest versions to try.

Comments (6)
Paul, October 20, 2005 01:05 AM:

Dude! What are you running linux for?!?

"I couldn't get sound working..."
"I installed Real player..."

Have you gone mad?

John, October 20, 2005 10:10 AM:

Sometimes I have to run it to remind me just nice Windows is.

Paul, October 20, 2005 11:14 PM:

That's true, it's easy for you to forget. I get to work with linux 24x7 and its state of the art command line text technology.

Linux sound support was so bad I bought an iPod to listen to music (circa October 2003) at work.

John, October 21, 2005 12:35 AM:

So with those sweet monitors you have, does linux support the flash readers in the side?

Paul, October 21, 2005 12:52 AM:

There are flash readers on the monitors?

Wheelson, October 27, 2005 09:25 PM:

So I gave this a shot, but we mostly have Virtual PC and Virtual Server images. VMWare Player says it supports those though. It does but I get a stop exception with about 50% of the images I have tried so far. I use differencing disks a lot and VMWare Player doesn't like those so to get it to work I've had to merge the parent and child disks together. I think that might be screwing VMWare Player up. That's a real bummer.

We may scrap Virtual PC and go with VMWare however and if we do this free VMWare player would be the perfect solution for the interns that work with me. I could create the images and then they could use them without us having to buy a license for them. Doing a Pepsi challenge on my laptop, VMWare player is quite a bit faster than Virtual PC.

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