Monday, December 25, 2006

Christmas Wish: VMware FreeBSD Host Support

I noticed this BSD News story mentioned a long-running VMTN thread showing requests for FreeBSD to be supported as a VMware host OS. This means you could run VMware on FreeBSD, instead of Windows, Linux, or (soon) Mac OS X.

If you share this interest, please post to the VMTN thread and let your desire be known. Thank you.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

My POV -

With FBSD being dropped as a supported guest OS in ESX, I think the chances of it being a host OS for workstation is pretty low. I doubt there is a very big potential audience for workstation that will not buy/run the product because they MUST have it on FBSD. Most FBSD users will settle for running workstation on Linux and just grumble a bit about it. Its not really a lost sale, just not a 100% pleased one.

Better way to spend time might be to lobby a smaller virulazation company like parallels for support. Their product is good as well, the picked up sales might be enough to make it worth their while.

Anonymous said...

Richard,

You should stop using VMWare and FreeBSD (as a host OS). I think you would be happier with Xen and NetBSD. NetBSD/xen 4.0 will have Xen by default, including fixed-up block/network backends.

XenSource and Virtual Iron appear to be dropping paravirtualization in favor of native virtualization With their new techniques and administrative interfaces, I don't see VMWare player, nor ESX server, being around much longer. It appears that Windows XP SP2 and 2003 Server work fine as host/guest as well.

Anonymous said...

Since posting in their forum requires registration, I opted not to. Thankfully, you don't require us to hand over personal information or waste our time we spend to fake it.

Anonymous said...

My recommendation would be for FreeBSD users to press for native support in VMWare, period.

Companies that are using FreeBSD - whether openly or as a "secret weapon" - have invested in learning curve/training as well as compatible hardware. It seems reasonable that they would like to stick with an OS that they know, as well as a virtualization platform (VMWare) that they know technically and feel comfortable with from a market share and support perspective.

It is often an uphill battle to convince management to go with an open-source OS that does not have a large support infrastructure behind it *provided by the OS vendor themselves* (like anyone other than like RedHat, Novell, Sun). Once management has been convinced to go with a FreeBSD-based strategy, asking them to switch would make the person who made the FreeBSD recommendation look ridiculous and would possibly prejudice management against any BSD because there is no vendor to choke. That'll end up being the last BSD recommendation of any kind that is made by anyone in that organization, and who benefits when that happens?

In sum, the business benefit to virtualization is to better leverage your hardware *and* stay on your current platform - less learning curve and potential for mayhem that way, as long as the virtualization platform works with the target OS.