Virtual Machines


iStock_000016987294SmallWhat’s a Virtual Machine?

A virtual machine program is a computer program that creates a virtual computer system, complete with virtual hardware devices. This virtual computer “machine” runs as a process in a window on your current operating system. You can boot an operating system installer disc (or live CD) inside the virtual machine, and the operating system will be “tricked” into thinking it’s running on a real computer. It will install and run just as it would on a real, physical machine. Whenever you want to use the operating system, you can open the virtual machine program and use it in a window on your current desktop.

Your virtual machine’s operating system is stored on a virtual hard drive — a big, multi-gigabyte file stored on your hard drive. The file is presented to the operating system as a real hard drive. This means you won’t have to mess around with partitioning.

Virtual machines add some overhead, so they won’t be as fast as if you had installed the operating system on real hardware. Demanding games that require serious graphics and CPU power are one particular problem, so virtual machines aren’t the ideal way to play Windows PC games on Linux or Mac OS X — not unless those games are much older or aren’t graphically demanding.

Article by: How to Geek

What are the benefits of a virtual machine? A virtual machine can allow you to experiment with your computer without the risk of causing harm to your actual computer. This means that if you for example have new software that you want to install, but you are afraid of viruses, a virtual machine will allow you to install it without infecting your computer. Also if you use a virtual machine, you will be able to experiment with different coding and customisation of the OS (Operating System) and if you make an error, it would not be fatal.

Do you want to get qualified to use virtual machines and earn industry recognised certification? If you do visit Horizon Online and our online training VMware course. For more information call 020 3393 4405 or email

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