Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 hits Release Candidate phase

The long waited VMware competitor seems to be (quite) arrived. Today Microsoft announced general availability of VS2005 Release Candidate. Just register and download it! (it expires January 1, 2005)

The big news it that there will be two different editions:

– Standard Edition, supporting up to 4 processors
– Enterprise Edition, supporting up to 32 processors (not available for download)

This is the only real difference.

Here the Standard Edition minimum requirements:

– Minimum CPU Speed
550 MHz or faster; 1.0 GHz or faster recommended

– Processor
Computer with up to 4 physical processors
Celeron, Pentium III, Pentium 4, Xeon, Opteron, Athlon or Duron processor required

– Memory
256 MB minimum; additional memory needed for each guest operating system

– Hard Disk
2 gigabytes (GB) of available hard-disk space; additional disk space needed for each guest operating system

– Display
Super VGA (800 × 600) or higher resolution recommended

– Host Operating System
Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition
Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition
Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition
Windows Server Small Business Server 2003, Standard Edition
Windows Server Small Business Server 2003, Premium Edition
Windows XP Professional (for non-production use only)

Microsoft also kindly adviced about not-Windows operating systems availability:

Virtual Server 2005 guest virtual machine environments are optimized for Windows Server 2003, Windows 2000 Server, and Windows NT 4.0 Server, yet enables users to run a broad range of x86-based operating systems.

Just remember: Microsoft doesn’t support any OS but Windows.

Microsoft hopes to go in RTM before end of summer and broadly distribute VS2005 before the end of the year.