Monday, July 28, 2008

VMware ESXi Now Available Free

VMware ESXi licenses are now available at no charge. If you aren't familiar with ESXi (or ESX), it is VMware's hypervisor offering. Whereas VMware Server or Workstation would be installed on top of a full operating system, a hypervisor installs directly on your bare hardware and eliminates the need for an operating system on your virtual machine host hardware. This saves a bunch of overhead on your hardware because the hypervisor allocates resources directly instead of leaving it up to the base operating system installation. IN addition to better performance, this also allows for advanced administration features, such as those in Infrastructure and other tools.

With Microsoft making so much noise about Hyper-V, it seemed inevitable that VMware would have to revisit pricing, but this change in licensing availability was sooner and more dramatic than I had expected. With Paul Maritz replacing Diane Greene, I wonder what other surprises may be in store for us.

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