KVM vs vSphere

KVM is ranked 5th in Server Virtualization Software with 3 reviews vs vSphere which is ranked 1st in Server Virtualization Software with 29 reviews. The top reviewer of KVM writes "KVM allows me to run virtualized environments for my customer projects and to modify the code as it's open-source, although there were stability issues when running I/O intensive tasks. ". The top reviewer of vSphere writes "Putting some VMware ESX storage tips together". KVM is most compared with vSphere, Hyper-V and XenServer. vSphere is most compared with KVM, VMware Workstation and Proxmox VE. See our KVM vs vSphere report.
Cancel
You must select at least 2 products to compare!
+Add products to compare
20619
Based on 3 reviews.
22823
Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about KVM vs vSphere and others in Server Virtualization Software.
283,354 professionals have used our research since 2012.

Quotes From Members Comparing KVM vs vSphere

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
KVM has a rich options set which can be directly used or via wrappers, such as libvirt.If you are a Linux desktop user, KVM is the solution to go with if you have to start virtual machines with Linux or other operating systems with almost zero extra configuration needed.A very reliable solution which can be used for x86 architecture virtualization with reasonable overhead.

Read more »

The benefit of the solution is that you can create template-based servers within minutes. If you were to use a physical server, it would probably take several hours, if not a whole day, to get everything set up the way you need.The UI is very intuitive, you don't have to spend hours before you figure it out. All in all, compared to other environments, like Hyper-V, we find vSphere a lot more user-friendly and intuitive to use.It is easy to maintain our data machines and take snapshots with the solution.It is easy to manage the solution. It is scalable and very stable.We are able to patch our hosts during production hours with the ability to keep services running.The easy of use with reduced space provides a better use of infrastructurevSphere has enabled an enterprise class virtualization environment with a central point of monitoring and management stretched over multiple datacenters (multi-site use), adding all the features of clustering for high-availability and failover, VM migration, and operations.vSphere brings the features required for an enterprise class system with a lot of supporting components: An intuitive user experience that simplifies and helps operational management.

Read more »

Cons
The only negative aspect of needing hardware support is a fully functional KVM can be dropped. It would be nice if the support for other platforms, like ARM or Risk, were as good as the x86 one. However, with the democratization of Chromebooks based on these chips and mobile devices, it will not take long for that to happen.

Read more »

In the next release, I would like to see programming. I'd like to see a lot more about customization for people who want to customize programming API, SDK.These days we have an environment where we are often using clouds as well. A solution that would be a little more cloud-aware would be really helpful. I know there is a product from VMware that is more specifically for the cloud, but it would be nice if VMware Cloud Manager would be cloud-aware. It would simplify certain processes.I would like to start to using NSX in the next release.Get the HTML5 client to 100% parity to replace the Flash client.As we introduce the DevOps culture, we need to make sure that the principles and tools used to support this approach can be easily integrated and interoperated with the vSphere environment with no (or less) redundancy in tools and functionality.They need to further develop graphics virtualization.Due to the fact that during the last three months there appeared some critical bugs, the virtual machine backup might be inconsistent.The Web Client is too slow.

Read more »

Pricing and Cost Advice
​It is free and can be run from your laptop, if needed, unlike VMware.​

Read more »

It is easy to understand the licensing of vSphere. We have standard enterprise licensing.The pricing is more expensive than Microsoft.VMware is costly versus other competitors but is still one of the market leaders and expanding now with partners like AWS.​The only issue with vSphere might be with the cost of the tools and the software.​The product is worth what you pay for it. I definitely feel like I"m getting good value.Compared with other vendors’ products, the pricing of the license is slightly lower. The annual S&S price is very affordable.Start with the lowest and upgrade if, and only if, absolutely necessary.VMware is consistently expensive and their pricing arrogance is what will drive us and other customers away.

Read more »

Find out what your peers are saying about KVM vs vSphere and others in Server Virtualization Software.
283,354 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Answers from the Community
Rhea Rapps
Jun Kai NgReal User

KVM is a simple and OpenStack-preferred virtual machine manager. vSphere is a different beast altogether, as it is expensive and ridden with lots of add-ons for VM infrastructure provisioning.

One answer to your question will be a company that can afford and wants to have a stable and long-term VM infrastructure can consider VMWare, as KVM is considered as a bare-bone VM manager.

The actual comparison should be between VMWare and OpenStack, as one is paid and one is free to deploy. The deployment for OpenStack can be a little trial and error as it is free and modular, and VMWare is fully-packaged, and it is easier for you to deploy, but at a cost that is calculated by per host.

22 February 18

I'd say the main difference that sticks out like a sore thump is the KVM is Opens source and VMware vSphere isn't. VMware is indeed the Rolls Royce of virtualization but doesn't come cheap. One has to have deeper pockets to access the finer enhanced features of the vSphere packages. KVM on the other, is also a stable Hypervisor and very popular with Linux inclined techs and gurus. Personally i'd encourage one to take the VMware vSphere route because of the solid global support of the product, the additional virtualization feature rich set offerings like vSAN & NSX and ease of use from the onset.

23 February 18
Fábio RabeloReal User

I have read a lot of valid arguments, and, unfortunately a lot of flawed arguments too .
What I will write here is based on my personal experience , I run a half dozen Enterprise level vitualized environments :
For the perspective of most of my customers, the main difference are the ability to audit the code of KVM ( witch are Open Source ) and a lack of it in VMWare .
VMWare is a black box, no one knows what happens inside of it, what are done with the VMs that are running over it .
Insted of it, with KVM, you know exactly what is happening . You know that KVM are not sending sensitive information about your VMs, or statistics about your environment to the vendor .
In second place comes the TCO :
KVM are not completely "free", you need some tools to manage it, but it is WAY cheaper compared to VMWare .
Lot of vendors says that "VMWare runs the world" , really ?
Amazon runs over XEN, Google and Facebook runs over KVM, and Microsoft runs over Hiper-V, sum all 4 and you will have more than a half of the big players on earth, so, from where comes that statement ?!?
About performance, nowadays there are no big difference between all the systems, technology blurred the lines between Type 1 and Type 2 Virtualization approaches .
Open source management systems ( Like Proxmox used by Facebook ) leveled the line between Commercial and non-commercial tools .
Yes, there are some scenarios that VMWare makes sense, buts the decision on witch are better for a particular user case goes down to the details .
Think about that before spend your budget of 2 or 3 years in one tool .

Fábio Rabelo

28 February 18

vSphere is the best option in my opinion, if you have enough budget to buy it. But also vSphere is more complete and easy to use.
Options like KVM of course are free but you have to be ready to wait help or sopport from the KVM community, in case of VMware you have the support from a paid support so you will have a response. Another aspect you can consider is the compatibility with software from other manufacturers, for example: You can donwload a ready applice from F5 or CISCO to deploy in your VMware plataform and just configure what you need.

21 February 18
it_user208146Real User

vMware is much closer to virtual, as opposed to simple hardware swapping.

21 February 18
Ranking
RANKING
Views
37,596
Comparisons
31,163
Reviews
3
Followers
530
Avg. Rating
9.3
Views
87,732
Comparisons
49,334
Reviews
29
Followers
1,694
Avg. Rating
8.6
Top Comparisons
Top Comparisons
Compared 35% of the time.
Compared 23% of the time.
Compared 12% of the time.
See more KVM competitors »
Compared 22% of the time.
Compared 17% of the time.
Compared 15% of the time.
See more vSphere competitors »
Also Known As
Also Known AsvSphere 6, vSOM, vCenter Server, VMware ESXi
Website/Video
Website/VideoKVM
VMware
Overview
OverviewKVM (for Kernel-based Virtual Machine) is a full virtualization solution for Linux on x86 hardware containing virtualization extensions (Intel VT or AMD-V). It consists of a loadable kernel module, kvm.ko, that provides the core virtualization infrastructure and a processor specific module, kvm-intel.ko or kvm-amd.ko.

VMware vSphere is the leading server virtualization platform with consistent management for virtual data centers.

Deliver business value from day one with powerful server virtualization, breakthrough availability, safe automated management and intelligent operational insight that adapts to your environment. Automate workload placement and resource optimization based on preset customizable templates.

OFFER
Learn more about KVM
Learn more about vSphere
Sample Customers
Sample CustomersMediaWiki, Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia, Wikivoyage, Wikidata, Wikiversity, Commons Abu Dhabi Ports Company, ACS, AIA New Zealand, Consona, Corporate Express, CS Energy, and Digiweb.
Top Industries
Top Industries
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider
25%
Financial Services Firm
11%
Manufacturing Company
7%
Government
6%
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm
11%
Retailer
10%
University
9%
Manufacturing Company
8%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Comms Service Provider
10%
Financial Services Firm
10%
Government
7%
University
6%
Company Size
Company Size
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business
21%
Midsize Enterprise
27%
Large Enterprise
52%
REVIEWERS
Small Business
25%
Midsize Enterprise
31%
Large Enterprise
44%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business
22%
Midsize Enterprise
34%
Large Enterprise
44%
Find out what your peers are saying about KVM vs vSphere and others in Server Virtualization Software.
Download now
283,354 professionals have used our research since 2012.
We monitor all Server Virtualization Software reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.

Sign Up with Email