The new version of VMware Workstation finally reaches the beta 2 milestone and includes a major new feature: the capability to stream any virtual machine from a web server and power it on while the download is still in progress.
This probably is the first step to deploy the much awaited OnDemand streaming technology that the company previewed at VMworld 2007.
The beta also includes a number of additional enhancements to the Unity interface, and the integration with the Microsoft Visual Studio Integrated Virtual Debugger for the Record/Replay feature.
Last but not least Workstation 6.5 beta 2 includes a new set of APIs called Virtual Machine Communications Interface (VMCI) Sockets which simplifies the networking between client/server applications hosted in different guest OSes, or between a guest OS and the host OS.
The reason to develop such new sockets when the virtual networking could be used is that the VMCI Sockets can provide better performance.
These new intra-VM communication channels could also be used for security purposes: moving data from a VM to another without passing through the virtual wire makes harder to intercept, snoop or hijack (even if the Security though Obscurity approach is much arguable).
Enroll for the beta program here.