It should come as no surprise that VMware entered the test lab with the most feature-rich and problem-free solution of the four vendors in this virtualization roundup. After all, this is a market that VMware created and has dominated for years. VMware vSphere 4.1 is the most advanced server virtualization platform on the planet, and it's priced accordingly. However, when you dig into those numbers, balanced against the features and VM densities per physical host, vSphere might not be as pricey as you think.
From available features to ease of installation to performance, VMware is either ahead, well ahead, or at least on par with the competition. Depending on the skills available in your shop, you may find that you can wring sufficient functionality out of the Citrix, Red Hat, or Microsoft solution at lower cost in the long run. Nevertheless, if the goal is to bring the greatest possible consolidation, scalability, or availability to your virtual server farm, VMware is undoubtedly your best choice.
This story, "Virtualization shoot-out: VMware vSphere" was originally published by InfoWorld.