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What's the difference between VMWare Player vs Workstation? Is it that Player is for non-commercial use and workstation isn't?

For someone who builds and tests applications at home for non-commercial use, is it worth paying for a Workstation license? Do I get any benefits over Player?

(Note: I realize there's open source solutions like VirtualBox, but am more interested in the differences between Player and Workstation.)


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up vote 3 down vote accepted

The main difference is that VMWare Player can run, but not create virtual Machines. Workstation can do both.

Update: It appears versions > 3.0 now include the capability to create Virtual Machines, but as stated by hawkdsh, it still lacks some of the advanced features such as snapshots.

You may also want to check out VMWare Server which is also free.

More information on all of them here.

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Installed VMWare Server this weekend and it works great. Thanks for the tip! – Anjisan Nov 8 '09 at 17:05
You're most welcome! – John T Nov 8 '09 at 17:07
The VM creation limitation has presumably been removed in version 3.0 – axk Nov 14 '09 at 20:58
Really? VMware came to my school last week and I talked with one of the devs, he said VMware player couldn't make VMs still so maybe he's unaware of his own product :) – John T Nov 15 '09 at 0:05
VMWare server has reached its end of life – Avi Aug 15 '12 at 9:00

No longer true. VMWare Player can create new virtual machines, but lacks the advanced features of Workstation, such as snapshot capability and integration with the VMWare enterprise products.

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