When you want to use your Microsoft Windows machine as a host operating system to run virtual guest machines, you require Windows virtualization software. There are many such softwares in the market, at varying prices; but there are also some which are available for free. Here we review some free Wndows virtualization software.
VMware Inc is the leading company in this domain, and most of its products are paid products. VMware Player one product that is available for free. VMware solutions can run guest machines with different operating systems that run on the x86 and x86-64 family of microprocessors. These include Windows operating systems such as Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, as well as the Unix/Linux flavors such as FreeBSD, Debian, Ubuntu and OpenSuse. VMware has a virtual appliance marketplace, from where you can download copies of different Linux flavors, called appliances, that are ready to be used. Other different kinds of appliances are also available windows 11 iso.
Released under the GNU free software license, VirtualBox is now developed by Oracle Corporation. The basic version is available free and supports x86 systems. The advanced version has support for USB and other features. Like most other virtualizers, VirtualBox can run multiple machines concurrently, and these machines can be stopped or run as you require. Because it tries to run as much of the guest code directly on the processor, virtual machines running on VirtualBox are seen to be very fast. It supports ISO images of operating systems, and can run Linux image files directly.
Qemu is developed by developer Fabrice Ballard and team, and is one of the most popular open source virtualizers. It is basically an emulator, so its speed is somewhat slower than other virtualizers. But its advantage come in the wide number of operating systems it supports. You can run Windows as well as Linux operating systems as guests; apart from that, Qemu can be run on them too. This allows for a flexibility that is not available on most other solutions, and come in handy depending on your requirements.
· Virtual PC is the primary virtualization by Microsoft, and is available for free. Unlike most other virtualizers, it officially supports and runs only Windows Operating systems. But it is seen that it can run a number of flavors of Linux too, including Redhat and OpenSuse. Virtual PC supports almost all the Windows Operating systems, going as far back as Windows 95 and Windows NT 3.1. Among the latest versions, the only one it does not support is the 64 bit Windows 7 as a guest.