VMware Workstation v8.0 icon
|Stable release||11.0  / 1 December 2014|
VMware Workstation is a hypervisor that runs on x64 computers; it enables users to set up one or more virtual machines (VMs) on a single physical machine, and use them simultaneously along with the actual machine. Each virtual machine can execute its own operating system, including versions of Microsoft Windows, Linux, BSD, and MS-DOS. VMware Workstation is developed and sold by VMware, Inc., a division of EMC Corporation.
VMware Workstation supports bridging existing host network adapters and share physical disk drives and USB devices with a virtual machine. In addition, it can simulate disk drives. It can mount an existing ISO image file into a virtual optical disc drive so that the virtual machine sees it as a real one. Likewise, virtual hard disk drives are made via .vmdk files.
VMware Workstation can save the state of a virtual machine (a "snapshot") at any instant. These snapshots can later be restored, effectively returning the virtual machine to the saved state.
VMware Workstation includes the ability to designate multiple virtual machines as a team which can then be powered on, powered off, suspended or resumed as a single object, making it particularly useful for testing client-server environments.
The VMware Player, a virtualization package of basically similar, but reduced, functionality, is also available, and is free of charge for non-commercial use, or for distribution or other use by written agreement. 
|This section requires expansion. (May 2012)|
|Red||Italic||Release no longer supported|
|Green||Normal||Release still supported|
|Major Version||Release Date||Significant Changes|
|3.0||1 November 2001|
|3.1||9 April 2002|
|4.0||23 March 2003|
|4.5||5 April 2004|
|5.0||11 April 2005|
|5.5||12 September 2005|
|6.0||9 May 2007|
|6.5||23 September 2008|
|7.0||26 October 2009|
|8.0||14 September 2011||
|9.0||23 August 2012|
|10.0||3 September 2013||
|10.0.1||24 October 2013||
|10.0.2||17 April 2014|
|10.0.3||1 July 2014|
|10.0.4||30 October 2014|
|11.0||1 Dec 2014|
Known limitations of VMware Workstation, as of October, 2009[update], included the following:
- Workstation 8 is the first version that requires an x64-compatible CPU.
- VMware virtual machines do not directly support FireWire.
- VMware Workstation version 5.5 provided only experimental support for 3D hardware acceleration, via Microsoft's Direct3D 8 API. A video has appeared on YouTube that demonstrates several 3D-accelerated games running under VMware Fusion and Mac OS X. The release notes for Fusion beta 2 include a list of 3D-accelerated computer games that can run within Windows XP-based virtual machines. In version 6.5, Direct3D 9.0 API support (only up to Shader Model 2.0) is provided on Windows 2000 and Windows XP guests (although not Windows 9x) and on any host OS. Version 7 has support for Shader Model 3.0 and OpenGL 2.1 graphics. It can run Crysis at 14-18 frame/s at low settings. Windows Display Driver Model support (version 1.0) was introduced in version 7.0, allowing Windows Aero to run in virtualized Windows Vista and later Windows guests, but OpenGL is regressed to 1.4.
- 64-bit guest operating systems require a 64-bit processor and a BIOS compatible with x86 virtualization. Intel processors require Intel VT hardware virtualization technology as Intel 64-bit processors without hardware virtualization technology do not have segmentation support in long mode. Only AMD64 processors of revision D or later, and Intel EM64T VT-capable CPUs, can run 64-bit guests.
- VMware workstation virtual machines did not have SATA support until the VMware Workstation 10 release.
VMware Tools is a package with drivers and other software that can be installed in guest operating systems to increase their performance. It has several components, including the following:
- Drivers for the emulated hardware:
- Drag-and-drop file support
- Clipboard sharing between host and guest
- Time synchronization capabilities (guest syncs with host machine's clock)
- Support for Unity, a feature that allows seamless integration of applications with the host desktop
Ready-to-use virtual machines
Many ready-made virtual machines (VMs) which run on VMWare Player, Workstation, and other virtualization software are available for specific purposes, either for purchase or free of charge; for example free Linux-based "browser appliances" with the Firefox or other browser installed which can be used for safe Web browsing; if infected or damaged it can be discarded and replaced by a clean copy. The appliance can be configured to automatically reset itself after each use so personal information is not stored. VMs distributed legally only have freely distributable operating systems, as operating systems on VMs must be licensed; ready-to-use Microsoft Windows VMs, in particular, are not distributed, except for evaluation versions.
- PowerWF - Provides a visual representation of VMware VIX scripts, converting them into workflows, or converting workflows into Powershell cmdlets and modules. VIX is VMware's addition to Microsoft's Powershell for automation of the VMware Player.
- "IEEE Xplore - Abstract Page". Ieeexplore.ieee.org. 2011-09-27. doi:10.1109/MCSE.2010.92. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- "VMware Workstation 11.0 Release Notes". Vmware.com. 2014-12-01. Retrieved 2014-12-09.
- "Processor Requirements for Host Systems". VMware Workstation 9 Documentation Center. VMware. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
- Warren, Steven (2008-11-20). "Snapshots in VMware Workstation". Blogs.techrepublic.com.com. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- "VMware Player 4.0 EULA". VMware. Retrieved 27 April 2012.
- "VMware Workstation 8 Now Available Worldwide!". Vmware.com. Retrieved 2011-09-14.
- "Does 5.5 support Firewire. If not, is VMWare working on it.". VMTN. 2006-04-27.
- "Experimental Support for Direct3D". Retrieved 2007-08-28.
- "Can 3D Graphics be Achieved on Virtualization?". InfoWorld. 2007-02-10. Retrieved 2007-08-28.
- "video". Youtube.com. 2007-02-07. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- "VMware Fusion Release Notes". Vmware.com. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duWkk872yM0][dead link]
- "Hardware and Firmware Requirements for 64-Bit Guest Operating Systems (1003945)". Kb.vmware.com. 7 February 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-05.
- "VMware Workstation release notes". VMware INC. Archived from the original on 2013-10-16. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
- "Timekeeping in VMware Virtual Machines" (PDF). VMware. 2005-08-01. Retrieved 2007-09-26.
- "Directory of VMs with 1539 entries as of 7 January 2011". Vmware.com. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- "Browser Appliance". Vmware.com. Retrieved 2014-04-05.
- Browser Appliance
- "powerwf.com". powerwf.com. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
- Review of VMware Workstation 7 at ZDNet UK, rated 9/10
- Review of VMware Workstation 7 at V3, rated 4/5
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