Server Virtualization Software Features

Read what people say are the most valuable features of the solutions they use.
Dan Withrow uses XenServer
Senior Manager of Engineering at a financial services firm with 501-1,000 employees
All features of the product are valuable, depends on the situation. I have used all of the features at one time or another. View full review »
Rana Hamza Liaqat uses vSphere
System Support Engineer at TMN
Its compatibility with LUNs and its vMotion, HA, FT and VDS. It works very smooth with LUNs. When we talk about its Cluster feature, then the HA, FT, and DRS features are just great in how they support large scale servers and VMs without any trouble in the production environment. VMware offers VDS switches which are very efficient and useful regarding network configuration in your virtual environment. The configuration should be the same on your cluster-joined ESXis to improve performance and when running a production environment or VMs on any ESXi. These features are very good for us. View full review »
DpsaIii8dbb uses vSphere
DPSA III at a government with 5,001-10,000 employees
The most important feature is high availability (HA) which monitors the system and restarts virtual machines to a healthy host whenever the system senses an imminent hardware failure. Another great feature is DRS which is VMWare’s load balancing software which keeps our virtual machines running on the server cluster in a balanced manner. This automated system keeps all our systems running with a high uptime. View full review »
BrianGibson uses vSphere
Senior Network Engineer at a tech services company with 201-500 employees
The most important feature for us is clearly the foundation it provides. In addition to that, we've found the High Availability and flexibility to be important as well. View full review »
reviewer849252 uses KVM
System Architect with 11-50 employees
Our infrastructure is based on KVM and Linux Containers and KVM hypervisor for about the last year. Management and backup is a lot easier with with Ubuntu and KVM, especially combined with ZFS and snapshotting. View full review »
Chris Thibeau uses Proxmox VE
Technical Support Analyst at a tech vendor with 1,001-5,000 employees
The template option allows us to build a desktop in a VM, then quickly deploy as a linked clone. The hard drive file on the template is used (read-only), then all changes are saved in a separate hard drive file. It is like deploying a new VM based on snapshots. View full review »
ITInfras39c9 uses vSphere
IT Infrastructure Team Lead / Project Lead IT at a mining and metals company with 1,001-5,000 employees
VMware's high availability which supports our SLA, VMware on the fly features like LUN expansion, P2V and API integrations are the most valuable features. View full review »
Erik Benner uses Oracle VM
Enterprise Architect at a tech services company with 501-1,000 employees
I think the most intriguing thing about Oracle VM is it's an enterprise-grade hypervisor. So it handles all the virtualization, and it's free. You don't hear the word Oracle and Free a lot, but there's a lot of stuff at Oracle that is free and Oracle VM is one of those. It does most everything that you need in the enterprise for a hypervisor for virtualization. I can run VMs in it, I can do farms of VMs, I can run Linux, I can run Windows, I can run Solaris, I have a lot of choices of operating systems. It does everything that you need it to do for most of your needs for hypervisor. There's a lot of benefits with Oracle VM that I like. I've been working with 3.4.1 which just came out. I've been working that prior to release. There's some features there that they added like Live Storage Migration that is really a key feature for that enterprise ability in the environment. The other thing is how it handles what are called partitions, from a licensing aspect. When I have Oracle licensing challenges that I have with some of the other hypervisors, Oracle VM is able to be configured so I don't have those challenges. View full review »
Allan Trambouze uses vSphere
Senior Consultant at Cofomo
The most valuable features are: * ESXi Quick Boot * VM encryption * New security features. The new feature announced today with vSphere Update 1 inside vSan is impressive. I did not have a chance to test Update 1 yet. We shall see how it performs in the next few days. Because my server is too old, I am using my own lab for TPM. I did not have a good chance to test everything. VM encryption is quite simple to implement: Just check two boxes and it is done. It is very easy to do. If you want to move from on-premise to cloud, it is quite easy. View full review »
Stephen Parker uses vSphere
Systems Engineer at BYU Idaho
The HTML5 interface is much better, it's faster, faster than the old C# Client, which was very nice to have. But with the HTML5 interface, it's smooth, fast, responsive. I can do it from any device, from my Mac, my PC, even from my phone. The solution is very simple to use and to manage. Updates are simple. The biggest feature that enables the ease of use is the fact that you can update via the web interface. With a couple of clicks, the update is done; no manual intervention, you just click Update and it automatically reboots the server for you and you're back up and going again. View full review »
Blake Grover uses vSphere
System Admin with 1,001-5,000 employees
This version has added a lot more features to the HTML5 interface and that helps us monitor and manage the system better and faster than with the old interface. I also think it is very easy to manage. When it moved over to HTML5, bringing all those new features into the HTML5 interface, that improved it a lot. I don't know specific performance data points, but I would say it has helped tremendously in being able to stay in one interface and not having to manage multiple, different interfaces in connecting to it. View full review »
Stephen Krujelskis uses vSphere
Senior System Administrator
Most valuable features are * quick provisioning * High Availability * DRS for balancing workload. I definitely find vSphere to be simple and efficient to manage. A key feature that enables this is vCenter. It is super simple to stand up, and once you're in there, especially with the new HTML5 client, everything is easy to manage. View full review »
LeadITSyb210 uses vSphere
Lead IT Systems Engineer at a tech consulting company with 10,001+ employees
Most valuable features of vSphere 6.7, for us, at the management level would be: * VCHA is a nice redundancy feature that they added in 6.7. * I like the quality of life improvements with the VMFS-6 for using auto UNMAP on the data stores. * We really appreciate the improvements to the Clarity UI where we can manage Update Manager (VUM) and our vSAN stack within the modern interface. The solution is also very simple and efficient to manage. Features that have made it simple and easy to manage include the newer VAMI for the V-center appliance, it's very easy to see what version we are at, and very easy to upgrade to the next version. The fact that we can now use VCHA at the appliance level just decreases our chance of having an outage, because so many of our customers rely on the API interface for V-center. View full review »
Sean Crawford uses vSphere
Information Systems Analyst at Sandag
The most valuable feature would be enhanced, what we call, Linked Mode to link our disaster recovery site to our primary site across different vCenters, without being required to be broken apart. Meaning, we have identity management and the actual vCenter servers split. We can actually do embedded now, thanks to vSphere 6.7. For the security features for vSphere 6.7, VM encryption was really critical because we're required to protect virtual machines. We have to adhere to PCI DSS for credit card protection. So the VM encryption was very critical to passing our audit. View full review »
Brandon Morris uses vSphere
System Administrator at City of Sioux Falls
One of the most valuable features that vSphere has is its HA and DRS protection, where it can simply make sure that all the machines are always where they need to be and how they need to be taken care of. We have a lot of servers and services for emergency services, for police, fire, and the like. We have the ability to use DRS as Anti-Affinity Rules to make sure that those redundant server pairs always stay away from each other. But then, if anything would happen to one of them, we have HA to be able to come up and bring it right up and going again. A lot of companies will say, "Oh no, we lose so much money per hour when something goes," but in our particular use case, if our emergency services would go down, people could actually die. That's a little bit more important. vSphere does offer quite a bit of security stuff built-in. It is nice to know that we can have the virtual machines encrypted, so that if somebody were to get a hold of any of those files, we don't have to worry about them actually being used. Since we do have so many different departments and areas with a lot of people that need access into the solution, we can use the role-based access controls to really restrict and control who can do what, so everybody can do what they need to do, but they can't do anything else past that. I do find vSphere simple and easy to manage. Most of the common tasks that you would do are very quickly available. One particular case that we go in all the time for is provisioning new servers. If you take that to the analogy of the physical world, that was something that, by the time you got it and you plugged it in and you stacked it, you did everything, you got the firmware up and going, you got the OS loaded and patched, you were easily in it for a day to two days, trying to prep up something that way. Just yesterday, I was sitting in a session (here at VMworld 2018) and I got a request for a brand new SQL Server for somebody and it was literally: right-click from template, new machine, here's its name, here's its IP address. Oh, by the way, tag it out as an SQL machine, and in 10 minutes the machine is up and running and is already installing SQL on its own, automatically. So it's pretty cool stuff. View full review »
Mikael Korsgaard Jensen uses vSphere
Server Manager at Herning Kommune
For me, the most valuable feature would be the EVC, but EVC has been changed to be per-VM which makes it possible for us to migrate the VMs to cloud and not take into account what hardware they're running on. Also, a big improvement from the previous version is that I'm now able to schedule backup for the VCSA. That is, in my opinion, a huge improvement. The last thing that I think is really great is, I'm now able to boot the OS and not the entire server. That's going to save me a lot of time. I find vSphere easy to manage, especially because of both the vCenter and probably because I've been doing it for 15 years. View full review »
David Grimes uses vSphere
VP of Product Engineering at Navisite
* The most valuable feature of vSphere is vMotion, because it rocks. It radically changes the way we think about how we can operate a large infrastructure, and notably, in terms of proactive maintenance. * The second biggest feature is HA, because complexity around IT resilience is a difficult problem to solve, especially at the application level. Therefore, being able to rely on the infrastructure to provide a 90:10 or 99:1 rule is more than enough resilience for most applications, and getting that directly from the infrastructure is fantastic. These features are useful day-to-day, because we operate a very large number of single-tenant private ESX deployments, managed by vCenter, as well as VCD-based public cloud. Frankly, with hundreds and thousands of hosts under management, there's no way we could operate that infrastructure without the use of vMotion. The ability to migrate those workloads to free up the physical infrastructure for maintenance activities, patching, BIOS updates, etc., is a critical requirement to operate. An important vSphere feature from a security perspective is VM encryption. As is the right thing to do in this day and age, security needs to be the number one concern for any IT operator. While there are security solutions which can be delivered at the physical, hardware layer, they don't necessarily address all of the requirements from an encryption perspective. Being able to have VM-centric, VM-level encryption is a great feature of vSphere. View full review »
Ganesh Sekarbabu uses vSphere
Windows Virtualization Engineer at a tech vendor with 5,001-10,000 employees
The most valuable feature is performance, especially the 6.7 version. We were looking for content library options for templates and were happy that VMware introduced it in 6.7 version. I like the speed and the quickness of the boot in the newest version of vSphere. The mission-critical applications in our company, like SAP, Siebel, and a lot of financially related applications are running. Our developer uses most of animation, etc., and we are using the vSphere for that. We have seen a performance boost compared to the previous versions, like a 5.1, five years ago. It has gradually increased. Previously, we hadn't migrated any database, like SQL or Oracle, into VMware. However, we are planning to now. We are moving forward because a lot of new features are now available on 6.7. We are doing a PoC, which we are happy about now. We may move over the database into our VMware environment. It is simple to manage. However, some of our operation teams, they are used to the desktop line, but VMware removed it in the previous version. Initially, we had an issue on the flash, but now we are happy. With VMware moving to HTML, it's really fast. We did a bit of version testing, and it's really fast and easy to use now. View full review »
Tony Reeves uses vSphere
Network Administrator
The most valuable features for me are a very easily scalable infrastructure. I can have a couple of hosts to do basic workloads. I can have a lot of hosts to do a lot of workloads. vSAN integrates my storage so I don't need an external storage SAN. I love having everything integrated in the same UI. The new HTML5 interface doesn't require any plugins anymore and it's super-fast. Really liking that change. In terms of the built-in security features that I'm using, currently I am using vSAN Encryption, using an external KMS server, and it works great. It's pretty easy to set up, very easy, especially in the UI, to integrate that and get that set up. The way that I find vSphere simple and easy to manage is that the interface is all laid out for you. You've got various different views based on what you want to do in the UI. You have your Hosts and Clusters view, if you're doing something where you need to manage at the cluster level. You can manage at the host level in there. If you're doing something very VM-specific or on a vApp level, you can go into the VM and Templates view. It's very easy to scale and use what you need to use. View full review »
Eric Garrison uses vSphere
Customer Engineer at ATTO Technology
The vCenter management is huge: ease of use, the simplicity of it. It gives us, with the Enterprise Plus version, pretty much all the tools that we need right on hand that work great with our products. We can help our customers make their data centers run a lot smoother. View full review »
reviewer930288 uses Hyper-V
User at a healthcare company with 201-500 employees
* Live motioning of VMs, which I consider to be a standard function. * When upgrading clusters from Windows Server 2012 to 2012 R2, we were able to live motion VMs from one cluster to another. View full review »
Preston Lasebikan uses vSphere
Lead Systems Engineer at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
The most valuable feature would be the slight changes they've made to VMFork instant cloning, in which they have abstracted out the parent-child relationship in cloning, in which certain features, like HA and DRS, are now usable on that parent virtual machine. That is wildly amazing and something that wasn't available until 6.7. We are actually making a lot of use of the VM Encryption feature. We're using that mainly because it's a customer requirement, especially after all the changes in the European Union for security. And that's a major issue. We've been adding in NSX and that, combined with the ability to have encrypted VMotion as well, has been huge. In addition, the simplicity and efficiency in managing it has always been one big thing with the entire vSphere suite. It has been very straightforward if you're just using it from the user interface. Hitting the API has always been great, and they're continuing to grow that, which has been really good for us. View full review »
Luis Arencibia uses vSphere
IT Operations Services Manager at a energy/utilities company with 10,001+ employees
It is a single pane of glass that lets you access your hosts and VMs. This makes the solution impactful, as you have one place to go to manage everything from one console. The encryption security is great. It is a topic we take into consideration daily. It is important that we enable all the features and make sure our data center is secure. Nobody can hack us, get in, steal information, and use it from our systems. We run an electric grid. Our apps that run on the electric grid are going on VMs, so these are very secure apps. View full review »
CIO9dd5 uses vSphere
CIO at a library with 201-500 employees
* Flexibility * Ease of management View full review »
Raden Evangelista uses vSphere
Systems Engineerineering Manager at a wholesaler/distributor with 51-200 employees
* The hypervisor * I use the ESXi a lot for my users to create their own templates and control their own VMs without my interaction. * The stability of the networking site * I can automate deployments. * I use customization to prevent any network and DNS collisions to the router. Our mission critical apps are mostly database servers. We are pretty much a Windows platform company. View full review »

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