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VMware Go: The Hyper-V Killer?

For a long time, if there is such a thing as a "long time" in the virtualization space, Microsoft's Hyper-V has had a significant advantage over VMware in IT shops that are just dipping their toes in the virtualization waters. Administrators could choose between the familiar, comfortable interface of Windows or grapple with the perceived interface and complexity of VMware. Not much of a choice. VMware Go should change all of that. VMware Go ESXi isn't a new operating environment as it is a wizard-driven deployment of ESXi servers. It's meant for small business interested in using virtualization, but who may have been put off by the complexity of learning a new environment. In effect, it removes much of the advantage Hyper-V has had in selling a Windows environment.  

VMware's ESXi server can be managed using either the vSphere GUI client or multiple ESXi servers, or can be managed using vSphere for an additional charge, starting at $1,495. In addition, the ESXi server can be monitored using the VMware's vCLI and the Power vCLI, but configuration changes are not allowed on the free ESXi server through either vCLI.

The software is a Web-based application available for free from VMware. Once downloaded, VMware Go leads the new customer through the configuration and installation of the initial ESXi server setup. The software  goes out and finds the machines in your organization capable of running ESXi server and verifies their hardware compatibility. The software then burns the ESXi installation media for installation at the server and verifies the configuration,  applying NTP to the configuration. Once the installation is complete, you're ready to deploy your VMs, and Go leads you through VM creation. You can convert an existing physical server configuration, create the virtual machine and install the OS manually or download a virtual machine from the virtual appliance marketplace. The latter is likely to be the easiest and fastest approach, and one that's usually free, as well.

Finally, Go helps you manage ESXi servers and virtual machines. A centralized management interface simplifies changes to a virtual environment and allows you to monitor virtual machines for basic performance and resource utilization. You can also scan and update virtual machines from a central console.