Please see our Review of Workstation 10. We are leaving this here for historical purposes.
It seems like a simple question doesn’t it? To go to VMware Workstation 9, or not?
The truth is it really depends on what you have going on. Clearly we have not had time for a full-scale review since the code went gold mere hours ago. And being frozen we now have a better idea of what is baked into VMware Workstation V9.
You certainly do not need the eyes of an eagle to see major changes between VMware Workstation V 8 and the release fresh out of the oven.
This is amazing considering its predecessor did not even live 365 days. And the current incarnation is certainly worthy of its own ‘dot-oh’ release.
In all honesty, it has a few people saying “Oh! Sh*t!” Its immediate predecessor was the first version that required an AMD/Intel x86 CPU that had to be capable of 64-bit operation.
Everything from the ground up (except for the look of the BIOS screen under the hood has been changed. This includes the handling of video. VMware is making no bones about the fact that handling the Windows 8 interface (The Interface Formally Known As ex-Metro) “was a real challenge for us.”
One of the first things I am looking to play with (as in as soon as I’m done with this entry) is to see how well VMware Workstation V9 works in conjunction with Windows 8 Release Preview on handling a multitouch trackpad. The firm says they’ve got it down.
Those of you who use AMD processors, take note. A 64-bit guest requires a revision D or later CPU. Intel users should be warned that even though you have a 64-bit processor, not all of them have the Intel VT hardware virtualization technology, as you would expect.
As I already mentioned, Workstation versions from VMware since mid-September 2011 require 64-bit CPUs. If you’re not absolutely certain your Intel CPU has the VT technology be sure to request from VMware a free 30 day trial before you buy.
My fellow geeks have been having very mixed reactions to this release. The firm is certainly alienating the hardware technicians that go after certification. Cost of theVCP-150 exam is $175. This is their entry-level exam. The vSphere exam (VCP-510) is $225. To move up the food chain in the vSphere world, you are strongly encouraged to attend an official training class. This comes at a cost of $3500.
As I can personally attest to the cost of getting certification is much more than the cost of the actual exam I can understand why people are upset, that after making the time / money / energy investment getting thrown out so quickly is a really negative ROI.
My professional geeks on the management side of the VMware equation understand why all this is happening so quickly. Microsoft is about to release its third version of Hyper-V and VMware has to stay ahead of the game.
So, overall the improvements in Workstation 9 are fantastic if you have modern hardware, ideally some SSD drives are part of the mix.
We will have a more in-depth analysis for you shortly. Stay tuned.