Poll: Which is better to run VMWare Server on

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General Chat Thread, Which is better.......... in General; I want to rebuild my laptop as I want to install VMWare server onit as I'm bored but I am ...
  1. #1
    richard
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    Which is better..........

    I want to rebuild my laptop as I want to install VMWare server onit as I'm bored but I am undecided as to the base operating system for the laptop. I would normally use Windows XP Pro as thats whats we use at school but I do playaround with linux on occasion at home and had thought about using Ubuntu as the base OS. So I was wondering what you lot would recommend as at the moment my mind won'tfocus on IT related stuff...............

    [Edited for spelling]

  2. #2

    Geoff's Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    Our VMWare server is running Ubuntu, as is my desktop. If I need to do anything windows related. I either boot my VMWare windows install or just RDP into a server.

  3. #3
    DSapseid's Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    I run VMWare on XP Pro

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    If you are purely using the machine for running VMs you can of course get away with a minimal install and hence have more resources for your VMs.

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    Re: Which is better..........

    I would personally recommend using a linux version of windows. Uses less resources and a little more stable. Not to mention its free

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    Re: Which is better..........

    I'd too go with Linux, as well as the lack of overheads you also get a choice of filesystem. XFS is good for large vmware files whilst NTFS gets fragmented: http://linux-xfs.sgi.com/projects/xf...ite_paper.html

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    Re: Which is better..........

    Can your base OS be headless? If it can you could save on resources and remotely manage it

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    Re: Which is better..........

    Quote Originally Posted by j17sparky
    Can your base OS be headless? If it can you could save on resources and remotely manage it
    That would be the case if Richard was setting up server (e.g. Apache or Samba) but he is thinking more about what to do for a workstation.

  9. #9

    Geoff's Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    Yes, our VMWare server is headless.

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    Re: Which is better..........

    Quote Originally Posted by mckeder
    linux version of windows
    My God! Has Bill Gates abandoned all his principles???

  11. #11
    ajbritton's Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    I know that by default on 32 bit systems (which can address an address space of 4Gb), Windows will allocate 2Gb of virtual address space to the Kernel and 2Gb of virtual address space to user mode processes.

    This means that even if you have more that 2Gb RAM you need to fiddle with BOOT.INI options such as the /3GB switch.

    I can see how this would affect the efficiency of VMs on a host with a lot of RAM.

    Does anyone know how Linux handles this sort of thing or is it a non-issue? Presumably it becomes a non-issue if you are in the 64 bit world anyway.

  12. #12
    richard
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    Re: Which is better..........

    My laptop runs 2 gig of ram so shouldn't have a problem with with the boot ini

  13. #13

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    Re: Which is better..........

    This means that even if you have more that 2Gb RAM you need to..
    Ermm.. no.

    For instance VMWare have long said you can make a 3.6GB VMWare guest on a 4GB box without the /3GB switch (because it doesn't map a VMs memory into user address space).

  14. #14

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    Re: Which is better..........

    I would go with Linux as well, mainly because it uses less resources

  15. #15

    Geoff's Avatar
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    Re: Which is better..........

    Does anyone know how Linux handles this sort of thing or is it a non-issue?
    You have the choice of a 2Gb/2Gb split, 3Gb/1Gb or 1Gb/3Gb. Additionally you can also use PAE (if the CPU supports it) and access 16Gb however this will eat double kernel memory for each allocation (as under Windows) so you can run out of kernel memory with certain workloads.

    Additionally under a Linux VMWare host you have an avenue of attack that is an unrealistic option to Windows VMware hosts. You can have your Linux host running 64bit Linux and run 32bit virtual machines. Windows can do this, however only with full emulation. Which is horrifically slow.

    If your emulating 64bit VM's on a 64bit host, you can ignore what I just explained and point and laugh at the unfortunate people who have to jump through the hoops.

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