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March 6, 2014updated 22 Sep 2016 1:16pm

5 things you should know about VMware

Virtually everything you need about the virtualisation giant.

By Joe Curtis

VMware is a virtualisation and cloud computing specialist that offers a range of services within those industries.

VM doesn’t actually mean virtual machine, though; here it is only a nod to them. In fact it is an operating system used very widely on IBM-compatible computers and servers, that in turn can host another operating system.

A good way to think of it is as the sole of your shoe, upon which an insole (another operating system) can be laid.

Here CBR talks you through the five key things you need to know about what VMware offers your business.

VMware Workstation (desktop software)

This hypervisor (a piece of software that creates and runs virtual machines) lets people set up multiple virtual machines on top of their physical desktop.

That means you can run another operating system on your computer, or even run several. It can also simulate hard disk drives, and offers a web interface to connect users to local or server-hosted virtual machines via their desktop or mobile device.

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VMware Horizon View (desktop infrastructure)

Formerly just VMware View, this solution provides remote desktop capabilities to allow users to run typically Microsoft operating systems like XP, Vista or Windows 7 within a virtual environment hosted on a server somewhere.

This is what’s known as thin client computing, where the desktop’s capabilities are virtualised, so the server in VMware’s data centre provides the processing power for your computer, meaning all you really need is a monitor, keyboard and mouse.

Essentially, it’s all the hardware you need without, well, you know, all the hardware.

VMware vCloud (cloud computing)

This solution is VMware’s effort to allow users to move data and works-in-progress between their own network of internal virtual machines and an external group of virtual machines.

The idea behind this is to combine the power of cloud computing with the flexibility of virtualisation.

vCloud could be useful for those interested in a hybrid cloud solution, presenting the possibility of moving less sensitive workloads to public cloud to free up internal resources.

VMware vSphere (cloud operating system)

This is the operating system that vCloud runs on, and it aggregates a variety of services; infrastructure services like server, storage and network resource virtualisation, as well as the management of applications.

That means vSphere provides control over all applications it runs, regardless of the type of application or the operating system involved.

VMware Horizon Application Manager (applications)

This piece of kit manages access to software, allowing users to securely access applications ran in the cloud.

CIOs can control security settings, level of access and user policies through this service.

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