3 Replies Latest reply on May 17, 2016 5:34 AM by JDLangdon

    VMWare free vs. paid version & job interviews

    Kelkin Novice

      Hi everyone,

      I come from an extensive MS Hyper-V background beginning when there was no P2V tool and having to rely on Windows Deployment Services to create P2Vs, and then moving on to the MS P2V tool and MS SCVMM.. I'm working in an environment where we use VMWare 3.5, but I don't really touch it.. I can.. but I don't need to...

      My contract is coming up, and every job description wants proficient experience with VMware these days.. Unfortunately I just don't have the opportunity here to become proficient with it, while I do have full admin rights to our farm. I have some interviews coming up and need to ramp up quick, so what I was wondering is this:

      I purchased the VMWare for dummies book hoping I can read through it quickly and ramp up somewhat, and figured I could download the free version of VMWare vSphere and install it at home to run my environment for a while. I'm currently running MS Hyper-V 2008 R2 at home with a few VMs (DCs, Exchange 2010, etc..).. My question is this:

      Is installing VMWare vSphere Hypervisor (Free) the same experience and interface as the paid versions? I'm hoping that with my extensive MS Hyper-V background, I can quickly learn VMware and be able to say I've done installs and can mange it. Of course this doesn't give me the SAN experience they all want, but it's something I can leverage with the rest of my experience.

      Of course the bad thing is I won't be able to use my server as a desktop anymore since it'll be running VMware instead of Server 2008 w/ hyper-v. (I've been told not to waste my time with the VMWare version that rides on top of windows, plus I don't think using that version will help me get the experience I need for these interviews)

      I'd love to hear anyone's thoughts on this.. Thanks!


        • 1. Re: VMWare free vs. paid version & job interviews
          EdWilts Expert

          The key thing you're missing between the free hypervisor and the full suit is Virtual Center - this is THE key management component for VMware hypervisors.


          What I'd suggest is that you download the full hypervisor, not the free one, and run it in evaluation mode.  This gives you a 60-day trial of all of the features.  Similarly, install the Virtual Center server somewhere - perhaps spin it up as a VM on your Hyper-V lab at home.  If you've got enough memory, you can spin up multiple virtual ESXi instances so that you can build a virtual cluster and experiment with vMotion and DRS.


          If you google for "ESXi home lab" you'll find a lot of references of how people have built a home lab for their own certification training.


          You may want to pick up Scott Lowe's Mastering VMware vSphere 5 book if you can afford it.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: VMWare free vs. paid version & job interviews
            Kelkin Novice

            Thanks for the reply Ed. That's a very good point... I wish VMware had a program like MS Technet where engineers like us could purchase the software inexpensively (or use it for free) in a lab environment to become familiar with it so we could push it as a solution and be in a better position to support it. I'd convert my Hyper-V setup to VMWare but if I can't use VCenter unless I do the 60 day trial I'm sort of locking myself in a corner where in 60 days I'll be SOL.. so that's not really an option.


            You're saying I could spin up ESXi instances as Hyper-V VMs and run VCenter as well? I didn't think you could run a hypervisor host as a VM, but if you can that might be an ideal situation. I'm running an Intel Core i7-2600K 3.4Ghz CPU with 16GB RAM and a 4TB RAID 5 setup..


            Can you convert VMs from VMWare back to MS-Hyper-V VHDs? I'm thinking also as an option that maybe I can migrate to VMware for 60 days, then migrate back before the trial ends.


            My friends are telling me to learn on v5 and not v4 as I was planning to give me an edge in the interview process.. so trying to figure out the best way to make this all work.


            • 3. Re: VMWare free vs. paid version & job interviews
              JDLangdon Master

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