VMware have released the latest edition of their desktop based virtualization software, VMware Workstation 8. With Workstation 8, VMware claims support for more than 600 operating systems, from MS-DOS to Windows 7 and can make use of up to 64GB of host RAM. This latest release also boasts over 50 new features which include:
- Remote Connections – VMware Workstation 8 provides a seamless way to establish remote connections to hosts running in Workstation, VMware vSphere, and VMware vCenter™.
- "Share" VMs – New in Workstation 8, users can share VMs so they can be accessed by teammates providing a quick way to test applications in a more production-like environment.
- Upload to vSphere –Workstation 8 enables users to drag and drop a VM from a user’s desktop to VMware vSphere. This feature allows users to deploy a complete application environment from a PC to a server for further testing, demoing, and analysis.
- New User Interface –The VMware Workstation 8 user interface has been revamped with simplified menus, live thumbnails, improved preferences screens, and a new virtual machine library with enhanced searching. Users can now search and access a large library of virtual machines that can reside on your desktop, a server, or on another PC running VMware Workstation.
- Improved Virtual Machine Capabilities – With support for HD audio with 7.1 surround sound, USB 3 and Bluetooth devices, Workstation 8 delivers new levels of virtual machine performance. In addition, improvements to virtual SMP, 3D graphics performance and new support for 64-GB RAM allows users to run the most demanding applications in a virtual machine.
For me the uploading of a VM to VMware vSphere by simply dragging and dropping it and the remote connections to hosts running workstation and VMware vCenter have got to be the most exciting of the new features. This level of VM management will no doubt prove to be a big hit amongst existing VMware vSphere administrators and will no doubt offer a whole new world of opportunities to those wanting to provide portable demos or operate in a development or vSphere lab environment where transferring VMs is a common requirement.
Here are the details on availability and pricing from VMware:
Availability and Pricing
VMware Workstation 8 is immediately available for purchase for $199. Upgrades from VMware Workstation 6.x and 7.x are available for $99. VMware Customers who have purchased VMware Workstation 8 between Aug. 1, 2011 and Sept. 30, 2011 are eligible for a complimentary electronic upgrade to VMware Workstation 8. For more details on VMware’s complimentary electronic upgrade program please go here.
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More information and VMware’s official announcement can be found here (Workstation 8.0).