VMware Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge submissions are finally available on the Virtual Appliances Directory.
At the moment the whole number amount to around 150 virtual appliances (it’s not clear if VMware finished publishing them), going from less than 1 MB to more than 2 GB.
Some of entries are complete operating systems with preconfigured applications on top. Some others are liveCD distributions inside the virtual machine.
Both categories are uninteresting in my opinion because, while providing sometimes priceless tools, they are not hard-to-do-from-yourself implementations.
I personally find much more interesting virtual appliances featuring an extreme stripped down operating system (something not every customer is able to do) with only components needed to run the intended application.
Also some virtual appliances seems to be much complex in initialization and are not reflecting the ultimate concept of virtual appliance: something you switch on and it’s ready to use (or require a minimal amount of work).
Based on this preliminary evaluation criteria I would like to underline some of them:
- Internet Connection Sharing Appliance
- splunk – log files make sense
- SugarCRM Appliance
- Internet Content Filter
- NAGIOS Appliance
- Spam Vigilante – Mail Filter Virtual Appliance
The whole list is available here.