What virtualisation software to start with?

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There are an array of paid for, free and open source virtualisation software (hypervisors) to choose from. Each has their foibles and the purpose of this post is to document the unusual features we've discovered in the course of building and deploying hundreds of VMs.

VMware Player

General notes

  • Available to download for free for non-commercial use.
  • NAT machines are allocated 192.168.47. subnet addresses. These should be accessible externally to the host OS and other guest OSs running on the same machine.

Version-specific notes

  • Version 4 (4.0.3 build 703057) doesn't allow external access to 192.168.47. NAT addresses by default. You can change the settings (using the Virtual Network settings in Workstation >= 4) or alter the config file (as described here, although in Player >= 3 you can extract a special executable (vmnetcfg) from the downloaded install files or Google code). Upgrading to Version 6 solves the problem and 6 also makes it easy to change the network settings with a GUI like its big brother.

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