VMware Player is one of the most under-appreciated VMware products in my opinion. Especially now that VMware has released version 3 I expect to see and hear more of VMware Player. Why? Well because it is FREE, and it basically is a slimmed down version of VMware Workstation. With version 3.0 you are not only limited to using pre-build VMs. No, with version 3.0 you can create VMs! Again, it’s free… it’s 80MB of awesomeness.
Here a couple of new features I think are worth knowing about:
- Virtual Machine with Easy Install — Create a virtual machine and install any supported guest operating system with Easy Install.
- New User Interface — Use the new user interface to create virtual machines and edit virtual machine settings.
- Windows 7 — Create and run Windows 7 32-bit and 64-bit virtual machines using VMware Workstation. VMware Workstation has been enhanced for performance and to take advantage of the new Windows 7 features including Live Thumbnails and Aero Peek.
- Aero Glass — A new Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) graphics driver has been developed for Windows Vista and Windows 7 virtual machines. The WDDM driver can display the Windows Aero user interface, OpenGL 1.4, and Shader Model 3.0.
- 3D Graphics Improvements for Windows XP guests — OpenGL 2.1 and Shader Model 3.0 support is now available for Windows XP virtual machines. The XPDM (SVGAII) graphics driver works with Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7. However, only Windows XP virtual machines install the XPDM graphics driver by default. To switch graphics drivers in the guest operating system, see How to Switch Between SVGAII and WDDM Drivers.
- Multiple-Monitor Display — Virtual machines can now take advantage of multiple monitors.
- Virtual Printing — Print from virtual machines without mapping network printers or installing printer drivers in the virtual machine. With virtual printing enabled in the virtual machine setting, all of the printers installed on the host operating system are available in the guest operating system. This functionality is enabled through a partnership with ThinPrint, Inc.