Review: SWsoft Virtuozzo for Windows 3.5.1

Virtualization technologies provided by VMware, Microsoft, XenSource, Serenity and Parallels aren’t the only available solution for server consolidation, fast provisioning and so on.

A different approach, usually called operating system (OS) partitioning, can achieve same results and actually seems to be very appreciated by many customers.

OS partitioning is considerably different from virtualization.
In a virtualization solution we have virtual machines, insulated, empty boxes with a dedicated set of virtual hardware devices (from hard disks to memories), ready to sustain various operating systems, even different from the one installed on real, physical hardware.
In an OS partitioning solution we instead have partitions, insulated boxes, forks of the underlying operating system, sharing with it the same software base and the same hardware, but maintaining their own network identity and applications pool.

Today two companies are mainly offering an OS partitioning solution: Sun, which offers a free, embedded partitioning engine within its Solaris 10 operating system called Solaris Containers, and SWsoft, which offers a commercial partitioning engine for Windows and Linux operating systems called Virtuozzo.

Since few months SWsoft also launched an open source version of Virtuozzo, called OpenVZ, available just for Linux operating systems.

The following review is based on SWsoft Virtuozzo 3.5.1 (build 3.5.338.0) for Windows, the latest available on February 2006, installed on Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition with Service Pack 1.

But before continue if you are familiar with VMware/Microsoft terminology better check this simple comparison:

VMware/Microsoft SWsoft
Host Operating System Hardware Node (HN)
Virtual Machine (VM) or Guest Operating System Virtual Private Server (VPS)

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