VMware Updates Desktop Virtualization Portfolio

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    VMware may be best known these days for its server virtualization software, but the product that the company was founded on was a workstation implementation of a virtual machine. Today, VMware announced an update to VMware Workstation along with updates to its desktop virtualization software that, among other new features, all add support for Windows 10 and IPv6.

    All told, VMware Workstation 12 Pro and VMware Workstation 12 Player bring with them 25 new features, including support for Microsoft DirectX 10 and OpenGL 3.3 graphics that results in 36 percent faster rendering on 3D images, along with the ability to run VMware Workstation on systems configured with 4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) displays.

    In addition, VMware Workstation 12 Pro is now three times faster when it comes to suspending or resuming encrypted virtual machines. VMware has also added support for additional guest operating systems, including Ubuntu 15.04, Fedora 22, CentOS 7.1, RHEL 7.1, Oracle Linux 7.1 and VMware Project Photon.

    William Myrhang, a senior product marketing manager for VMware Workstation and Workstation Player, notes that as a 64-bit implementation of VMware Workstation, it’s also now possible to run as many as 16 virtual CPUs accessing a total of 64GB of RAM.


    VMware today also released VMware Fusion 8 and VMware Fusion 8 Pro, the desktop virtualization software it offers for the Mac. Like the workstation offering, these updates add support for Windows 10, various flavors of Linux, DirectX 10, OpenGL 3.3 and IP v6. In addition, VMware says this release is compatible with a forthcoming “El Capitan” release of the Macintosh operating system that is expected later this year.

    Finally, to help spur adoption of its cloud service, VMware is giving users of all its desktop virtualization software updates access to $600 in credits toward the vCloud Air cloud service.

    Because most end users continue to run one favorite operating system, desktop virtualization software is still not widely used in every segment of the enterprise. But as the machines those operating systems run on become more powerful, the overall desktop virtualization experience continues to improve. As a result, there may soon come a day when, with or without the support of the internal IT organization, end users will routinely switch between operating systems on their desktop much like they switch between windows on any other application.

    Mike Vizard
    Mike Vizard
    Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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