VMware Alternatives: Do you want to run multiple operating systems on your Pc or laptop? are you looking for something that can help you achieve great productivity providing you the ability to run both Windows and Linux operating systems on the same laptop?
Well, you have come to the right place. It loud and clear that Virtualization is a wast field of technology. Selecting a virtual machine depends upon the usage. Some recommend the usage of VMware Workstation if you are planning to work on an enterprise level. Another flavor VMWare provides is VMware Player mostly recommended for casual users.
Why should you look for alternatives to VMware Workstation?
VMware is not the single option you should look for. There are a number of VMware alternatives that can come very handy when you want to experience the taste of more than one operating system on your computer Or you are planning to use virtualization for enterprise production. There is a number of cons of VMWare WorkStation that would provoke you to look for alternatives.
- If you are not looking for enterprise Usage, VMware is not a good option as it is practically bloated.
- It is costly, with a free version having limited features.
- Closed source, you will have to be on the mercy of engineers for all bug fixes.
Top 10 VMware Alternatives to Replace VMware WorkStation & Player
If you are looking for free? VMware alternatives then VirtualBox is your best choice. VirtualBox is one of the most widely used general-purpose virtualizers for hardware x86, can be used at the server, desktop and embedded.
Supporting Windows, Mac, Linux operating system and Solaris hosts (64-bit only). Not only famous for personal use but is also popular for enterprise production.
VirtualBox is a high performance and extremely rich in features. One of the best free open-source virtual machine software for professional solutions. Some of the key features of Virtual box are given below:
- Portability: VirtualBox supports a large number of hosts of both 32 bit and 64 bit operating systems.
- Unlike other virtualization solution providers, VirtualBox doesn’t require you install hardware such as Intel VT-x or AMD-V, In Fact, VirtualBox even runs on older hardware too. For more information on this check out Virtual box section for Hardware vs. software virtualization
- Multigeneration branched snapshots: Another cool feature of Virtual box, which will create a snapshot of the state VM. This gives you the option to go any time to that snapshot and configure a new Virtual machine, VirtualBox will create a complete snapshot tree. check out more details here.
- VM groups
- Remote machine display (RDP)
If you are Mac user, but you also love Microsoft Windows, Would you like to have both the operating system running on your Mac Computer If the answer is yes, then Parallels Desktop for Mac is definitely for you!
Now you can taste both the operating system and the cool part is you can use all the applications of both operating systems without even rebooting. Parallels Desktop will tune itself automatically providing you with fasted, easiest and most powerful way to run both operating systems Seamlessly.
You can also run other operating systems on your Mac that are supported by Parallels Desktop including OS X, Win 10, win 8, win 7 Linux, etc.
Here are other key features Parallels:
- With Parallels taste both Windows and Mac applications.
- Parallels will help you to switch easily from Pc to Mac
- You can also create VM for OS X, Windows 10, Windows 8.1 & Windows 7, Linux operating system, and google chrome
- Robust Performance
- One-click tuning
- Business Class Software
For more information about Parallels Desktop for Mac visit here.
The only downside is you will have to buy the license for Parallels Desktop VM. It can prove to be one of the best alternatives to VMware Player.
If you are looking for open-source virtualization on Linux then the best option for can be KVM. It stands for Kernel-based
Virtual Machine used to run multiple operating systems on Linux hardware X86. Intel VT or AMD-V are its two popular extensions.
The core virtualization functionality related to infrastructure and processor is provided by KVM’S loadable module called kvm.ko. People usually compared KVM with Xen. Let see how are they different from each other
Difference between KVM and Xen
Xen external hypervisor which is a program that takes control of your machine by dividing the resources among guests you wan to run on the same machine. On the contrary, KVM is part of Linux Kernel which works on regular Linux scheduler and memory management.
This should give you the idea that KVM is much lighter and simpler with extremely rich features to be used. To give you an example one of the features of KVM is to swap guests to disk to free RAM.
KVM is limited to processors that support x86 KVM whereas when we come to Xen uses the paravirtualization Technique to run modified operating systems on non-KVM x86 processors. Paravirtualization is not supported by KVM. Though paravirtualization is supported by KVM for device drivers to improve Input/Output performance. You can study further features of KVM here.
Another best and most powerful tool for Linux virtualization. QEMU is an opensource emulator and virtualizer having the ability to run different Operation systems OSes and applications programs (that are made one machine ) on a different machine.
It runs on the back of KVM, sending guest code to the hosting Control processing unit CPU providing high performance in virtualization. Some of the key features of QEMU are:
- Virtualization tool for Linux machines
- Supports auto-resizing virtual disks
- x86, server and embedded PowerPC, and S390 guests can be virtualized using QEMU
- Support thumb-drive based portable virtual machines
- QEMU is one of the members of Software Freedom Conservancy
- It is the free and best alternative to VMware.
If you are a Linux fan and want to use alongside your Windows OS then MobaLiveCD is for you. It easy to run Linux within Windows by just download your ISO image for the Linux you want to use, MobaLiveCD will help you run Linux with one click.
Now you can experience a taste of Linux with a single click using MobaLiveCD, no need for any sort of installation. You can even save it using a USB drive and use where ever you want. Some of the features that are worth mentioning are :
- Lightweight, and portable.
- package size of only 1.6 MB
- No installation need just use the ISO image of your favorite Linux cd.
- One-click to change your Windows into Linux.
- It has a very easy to understand interface
- Free for personal or professional use.
- Best Free alternative to VMWare.
6: Microsoft Hyper-V Server
The stand-alone Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 is best in providing optimization and reliable virtualization to organizations. Microsoft Hyper-v can be plugged into most of the existing infrastructure allowing the organization to reduce the cost and still have high-performance server utilization by bringing workload to a single server. Microsoft Hyper-V us mostly used in organizations for the development and test environments.
Paragon Virtualization Manager is another powerful and reliable tool that helps you provide virtualization Management by migrating your complete operating system to the hard disk of a virtual environment (P2V).
Allowing you to manage all your virtual machines in one place and still work on them. It provides you an easy migration of Windows PC to a virtual machine that can be used seamlessly.
It has a technology called ConnectVD that keep the maintenance and the configuring intact for the virtual drives. Now you are provided with a shift to a physical hardware platform.
Transferring of data among Virtual machines is increased by 200% using Paragon Virtualization Manager. All popular hypervisors are supported. The price of the Paragon Manager is fairly low as compared to the features it provides, you see the price and plans here.
8: Boot Camp
But is one the most used utility that provides virtualization solutions by allowing you to install Windows Operating systems on your MAC device. You can install even the latest Windows versions such as Windows 8, 8.1 and Windows 10.
While installing Windows OS Boot Camp simply takes you through re-partitioning of hard drives using either Leopard or snow disc for installing Windows drivers. Few of the things that should be taken care of before you start:
- Use your Mac machine
- (ISO image of Windows) the select version you want to install
- An Apple keyboard,
- a minimum of 60 GB of free disk space should be available on your start-up drive.
Once again a very nice tool for virtualization to run Windows applications on your Mac. VMware Fusion can be your first choice when shifting from Windows to Mac, plus you can take all your Windows applications with you too.
Now you can switch seamlessly between Operating Systems in no time. Linux and Mac OS X are also supported by VMware Fusion. The two latest and most likely OS from two different platforms can be brought together using VMware Fusion 8. Here is a quote from VMware Fusion 8 about the two operating systems.
If you are a Mac lover but are using Windows machine, worry not now you can bring Mac to your computer using maComfort. It provides you the same look and feels like that of Mac on your Windows device.
It is a window program bring you the best features of Mac OS. Allowing you to enhance your workflow by using the same key combination you have been using on Mac OS. It is a premium tool, give it a try and make your life easier with maComfort.