VMWare is virtualization product that can run on x86-compatible computers. It enables system administrators to partition a physical server into multiple virtual machines and run different operating system instances on each partition.
 Benefits provided
Some of the benefits provided by VMware:
- Provision a new server in minutes without investing in new hardware
- Run Windows and Linux operating systems and applications on the same physical server
- Increase the utilization of a physical server
- Move virtual machines from one physical host to another without re-configuration (VMotion)
- Easily migrate virtual machines to VMware Infrastructure
- Access enterprise-class support organization
- Efficiently provision, monitor and manage infrastructure
- Capture state of a virtual machine and roll back to that state with the click of a button
 Supported Operating systems
VMWare supports the following guest operating systems
 Oracle on VMWare
VMWare may be great for testing RAC on a single system. However, consider the following before deploying Oracle system on VMWare:
- Oracle Corporation does support their products on VMware, but does not certify them. The difference is that in the case of support, Oracle will try to fix the bug/problem and will do so if the bug is known. If it's not, as Oracle does not know Vmware technology, you need to migrate your Oracle software on bare metal. Certification means that Oracle will solve any issues promptly and assures that it will do so. The concern becomes relevant when you run 24/7, enterprise or mission critical applications or you have a cluster running RAC. Spending hours to bring the software on physical every time you encounter an issue is not something ideal.
- Oracle does not recognise software-based virtual servers. Full Oracle licences must be paid for the physical servers that run the Oracle software. One may end-up trading cheap hardware for very expensive software licenses.
- Virtualization has overhead. One should expect a 10% to 20% degradation in I/O on loaded systems.
- Virtualization makes little sense when using Oracle RAC. Virtualization is about consolidating smaller systems on reduced hardware. RAC is about scaling beyond the limits of what physical servers can provide.
- VMWare can be expensive, while Oracle provides a free alternative.
 Also see
- Oracle VM, Oracle's free alternative to VMWare.