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I'm new to the concept of virtual machines and want to play around with them in my next project. I want to build a home server that will host various virtual machines.

Can I access these VMs from another physical computer (e.g. a laptop)? If so, what software would the other physical computer need to connect the host server? Would any performance gain on the host server from faster processor/more memory be useful compared to to running the VM directly on the laptop? Or would connecting over the network introduce enough latency to make running the VM on the laptop preferable?

I know that the some of my questions would depend on the specs of each machine so for example let's say the host server has a Core i7 with 32gb of RAM and the laptop is a MacBook Air with a Core i5 and 4th of RAM.

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The network will always be more important for remote access than your RAM/CPU.

You can use any RDP software - you didn't say which OS the host is running so I am going to assume Windows. After you intall the VmWare workstation you can connect to the host OS via either RDP or VNC - here is the link to RDP setup http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/ff404238.aspx

That is what I use and al of my VMs (Ubuntu and windows XP) are running in VMs on that host.

You also didn't specify what you mean by 'access' so I assumed you want access to the console. if you need to access for example their drives you can map them the same way as any other computer on the network - just make sure your network card is set to "bridged" during the setup

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By access, I mean that I want to run the VM in full screen mode on the laptop (like a thin client I guess). –  Splendor Jan 28 '13 at 0:54
    
OK, than the RDP will work - this is exactly what I do on my home server –  TomEus Jan 28 '13 at 2:41

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