For a long time I’ve used both Hyper-V and VMware Workstation to provide virtualisation capabilities on both my desktop and laptop. With Windows 10 there were good security reasons to enable Hyper-V (Virtualisation Based Security, Credential Guard, Device Guard, etc) facilitating a hardened platform more resistant to attack. The challenge with doing so is that once enabled we can no longer use VMware Workstation on the same machine, at least not without disabling Hyper-V first.
You may wonder why this is an issue, after all both solutions allow us to run VMs so what would make one choose VMware Workstation at all when Hyper-V can be enabled on our Pro/Enterprise builds for no additional cost? Well it simply comes down to functionality, there are things VMware Workstation allows us to do that Hyper-V either doesn’t support or where it may require some extra jumping through hoops.
One good example is my use of Kali Linux – I want to be able to map through a USB Wi-Fi adapter not as a network connection but for use with airodump-ng and other WLAN pen testing tools. I don’t want to disable Hyper-V because I make extensive use of the features it provides in securing my device so this leaves me unable to run Workstation. Ideally the two products would co-exist and we could enjoy the best of both.
This is something people have wanted for a long time and excitingly we may not be far from getting our wish. Microsoft and VMware have been working together and have released information on their progress, you can read more in the articles below.
This news really does excite me – having the best of both products on one device will be truly excellent. We will have to wait for further news and details on how the products will cohabit and what changes may be enforced on Workstation to facilitate this. Once a stable release and design is published I shall be testing on my own machines and likely writing additional posts discussing my experience.