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VMware supports 64-bit systems

Jun 29, 20042 mins
Data CenterVMware

* VMware adds 64-bit extensions to virtual server technology

VMware last week announced that its GSX Server and Workstation products now work on AMD64 and Intel Extended Memory 64 Technology (Intel EM64T).

The company has unveiled what it calls experimental support for these platforms. Experimental support is available for the beta version of Windows Server 2003 for 64-bit systems, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3 and SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8.

Experimental support means that VMware will work with customers and technical support to resolve any customer issues relating to the 64-bit extension technology. The products will move from experimental to official support over the next 18 months.

The updates let customers migrate their operating systems to 64-bit versions while still using 32-bit applications.

VMware GSX Server 3.1, which supports the 64-bit extensions, is free to customers that have current support contracts. VMware Workstation 4.5.2 is also free for VMware Workstation 4.x customers.

The company was acquired by storage leader EMC in January and announced its 64-bit roadmap in April. In the future, customers will be able to run 32-bit and 64-bit virtual machines concurrently on AMD64 and EM64T machines.

VMware is the first vendor to announce virtualization of 64-bit Intel and AMD environments. Neither Microsoft’s Virtual Server 2005 RC, which it acquired from Connectix in January 2003, nor SW-Soft’s Virtuozzo for Enterprise support 64-bit platforms.

Vmware GSX Server is designed for departmental consolidation of servers and to streamline maintenance and testing. It supports Linux, NetWare and Windows and is installed on an Intel or AMD Opteron server platform. GSX Server lets a server run several operating systems concurrently to optimize resources. For instance, when an IT manager wants to perform maintenance on a single CPU, the resources of that CPU can shift to another until maintenance is completed. Alternately, jobs can be load-balanced across servers, moving them from one server to another to increase utilization.

VMware Workstation 4 lets users run multiple operating systems simultaneously on a single PC. Like GSX Server, it supports Windows, Linux and NetWare clients.

GSX Server starts at $2,500 for two CPUs. Workstation 4 starts at $189. Both products are available now.