XenClient Free as alternative to VMware Fusion/Workstation, VirtualBox and Parallels ?

Discussion in 'sandboxing & virtualization' started by Defenestration, Jul 23, 2014.

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  1. Defenestration

    Defenestration Registered Member

    Jul 17, 2004
    I've heard of Xen virtualization before but hadn't really given much thought to using it on my laptop to run multiple OS's instead of one of the type 2 tools like Fusion/Workstation, VirtualBox or Parallels.

    After looking into it a bit, it seems like the type 1 XenClient is quite a good option in that I can run all OS's at close to native speed, with the option to switch between them at any time.

    Has anyone else used/is using XenClient for their virtualization instead of one of the usual type 2 options, and what are you experiences with it ?

    XenDesktop also seems pretty cool in that I can setup my main machine once (eg. a Desktop) and then use that machine on all my other devices (eg. laptop, tablet etc.).

    As Citrix offer a free version of both XenClient and XenDesktop, I'm surprised I haven't read more about Xen (Client, in particular) being used as a consumer virtualization option.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2014
  2. deBoetie

    deBoetie Registered Member

    Aug 7, 2013
    Haven't used XenClient, but have been interested in Qubes for a while, and like the latest release a lot. Qubes runs a bunch of Fedora/apps on the Xen hypervisor, as well as supporting a W7 instance. Speed is good, though the more resources (memory) you have the better. Many laptops seem only to support 8G, at least officially, and ideally I'd want 16G. Perhaps you could give it a try to see the reality of using Xen, obviously Qubes does a bunch of things on top of that.

    From the way I read the XenClient pitch, they are providing manageable instances for laptop consumption based on Xen for corporates. If you do give that a go, I'd be interested in your experience.

    The other big non-technical aspect of these kinds of ways of working is that you have to take care of the bizarre MS licencing for their OS, which, unless you are a corporate with an enterprise licence which allows VM licences, requires you to get a licence per VM. That's also a potential issue for any apps that are loaded on the VM.
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