Virtually a new computer

I had read about VMWare Player before but for some reason I thought it was a demo sort of thing, or maybe something like those Live CDs from Ubuntu or Knoppix that let you run a different system but not really modify anything.

Then I ran across a posting on an internal web site at work and learned more about it. Turns out that it will let you run a complete virtual machine as an application from within Windows or Linux. And it’s free! It just won’t let you build your own virtual machines, you have to download one that somebody else has built with the full software.

So now even though I booted into Windows, I have the VMWare Player application running and it’s running Linux. Specifically (according to Greg‘s Users Online section I’m running Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.12) Gecko/20051010 Firefox/1.0.7 (Ubuntu package 1.0.7)..

Best I can tell I really seem to be running the Ubuntu 5.10 release. VMWare Player knows to use the ethernet card so both Windows and Linux can access the network at the same time. I’m not sure about printers, I haven’t tried to print from Linux yet. I was able to connect to the Ubuntu updates page and run all the updates they have posted since the base 5.10 release came out.

Pretty slick. Now I can run Linux without having to reboot from Windows, and my wife can get to all her Windows stuff without having to get out of Linux if I forgot to reboot back.

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2 Responses to Virtually a new computer

  1. Greg says:

    After repeated virus- and malware cleanings, and throwing my hands up at the idea of keeping a neat and orderly directory system maintained, I’ve come to the conclusion that I need two computers – a windows box for everyone else, and a linux box for me, both hooked up through a KVM switch so you can just flip from A to B. Hmmm. I wonder if I can make them think that the 1.6 GHz machine is the same one they’ve always been using, and keep the 3.2 GHz for myself?

  2. 133k says:

    If you would want to build your own virtual machine you could download the 30-day trial of VMware Workstation, it has no limitations. You could make your own VM before the 30 days are over and run it in the free player!

    A feature of VMware Player that I just discovered and am really enthusiastic about is hibernation. You can just close VMware Player with the virtual machine running and it will save it in it’s current state. Next time you boot the virtual machine you’re back where you were within ten seconds. I luuuuv it!

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