Top 10 things you must read about Virtual Machines

  1. Anatomy of a virtual machine (Pt. 1) – An article from Tech Target that covers what a virtual machine is and the differences between the physical hardware of a host server and the virtual hardware that a virtual machine sees.
  2. Anatomy of a virtual machine (Pt. 2) – An article from Tech Target that covers what all the files that make up a virtual machine are and detailed information on each file type.
  3. The Reincarnation of Virtual Machines – An article from Mendel Rosenblum on what a virtual machine is, the history of virtual machines, the different types of virtualization and detailed information on hardware virtual machines.
  4. Timekeeping in VMware Virtual Machines and Timekeeping in VMware Virtual Machines – A VMworld 2007 presentation (free registration required) and white paper from VMware that describes how timekeeping hardware works in physical machines, how VMware products virtualize this hardware, and the various ways that guest operating systems use the hardware to keep time. They also cover a few known timekeeping issues and how to correct or work around them.
  5. CIS Virtual Machine Security Benchmark – A security benchmark for virtual machines from the Center for Internet Security. This document describes potential threats to virtual machines and has guidelines for securing and protecting them.
  6. Improving Guest Operating System Accounting for Descheduled Virtual Machines in ESX Server 3.x Systems – A white paper from VMware that covers the descheduled time accounting component of VMware Tools that provides improved accuracy for guest CPU time accounting and improved guest OS timekeeping. It explains how to install and monitor VMDesched on Linux and Windows guest operating systems. It also describes timer interrupt virtualization issues resolved by VMDesched and how VMDesched works.
  7. Virtual Machine Backup Guide – Documentation from VMware that provides information on different methods you can use to backup and restore virtual machines. It also describes how to setup and use VMware Consolidated Backup in your environment.
  8. Virtual Machine Mobility Planning Guide – Documentation from VMware that covers how to plan a virtual computing environment that allows maximum mobility for your virtual machines. It covers key issues you must address when moving virtual machines that must be modified to run in the new environment. Topics include how to move virtual machines between different VMware products and versions, platform differences and cross-generation mobility.
  9. Choosing a Network Adapter for Your Virtual Machine – A knowledgebase article from VMware that describes all the different virtual network adapter types that you can use in your virtual machines. It describes what each type is and under what circumstances it can be used.
  10. Understanding Full Virtualization, Paravirtualization and Hardware Assist – A white paper from VMware that provides an overview of x86 virtualization, different techniques for CPU virtualization, memory and device I/O virtualization and the benefits of paravirtualization.
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