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Can anyone recommend a good book about virtualisation, including the Popek and Goldberg virtualization requirements?

I mean a book that doesn't necessarily focus on x86 but also does comparisons to PowerPC and 68k or IA-64.

Is Smith, Jim; Ravi Nair (2005) "Virtual Machines" any good?


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closed as not constructive by Bryan, voretaq7 Dec 8 '12 at 3:46

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Product, Service, and even book recommendations are off-topic on Stack Exchange sites - Virtualization being a (relatively) new technology is especially problematic as new books are being written/published and what we recommend as a great book today might be awful compared to what gets released tomorrow. Amazon or Google can help you out - they even have book reviews and ratings. Alternatively you can ask in chat. – voretaq7 Dec 8 '12 at 3:45
This question was asked (and answered) years ago. And the article you point to doesn't say that book recommendations are really off-topic. – Andrew J. Brehm Dec 8 '12 at 21:40
A book is a product. Years ago there was no general policy on product recommendations - now there is. If you disagree with the policy (or think books should be an exception) Please raise the issue on Meta - I'll be happy to discuss it further there. – voretaq7 Dec 10 '12 at 2:31
up vote 0 down vote accepted

this is one

Seems a little product-specific. I am not looking at the "how to use" but the "how it works". – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 12 '09 at 13:22
Virtualization For Dummies this name of book which there to download from – Rajat Jun 12 '09 at 16:32

This one is a mustread if you're interested in the architecture and only have basic knowledge of how virtualization works:

Also check out the blog on for benchmarks and comparisons with cutting edge as well as more mainstream hardware together with virtualization.

The Dummies book is probably very good. But I am looking for something more specific to why certain instructions cannot be virtualised etc.. – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 12 '09 at 13:23
It's been a while since I read the article, but I thought it was mentioned in there briefly? Didn't go into detail all too much but I think it did mention and explain it. – HannesFostie Jun 14 '09 at 15:54

Definitively, "Virtual Machines (Versatile platforms for Systems and processes)" By Smith & Nair is the ultimate book about virtualization in a scientific way and neutral vendor. But it covers a lot of aspect: emulation, Java virtual machine, hardware virtualisation... It is not specific about one architecture but has a lot of discussion about architecture-dependant optimization.

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I don't have have specific book recommendations but would suggest that whatever you do find includes material from within the last year or so. Virtualisation technology has made some significant advances since 2005, that's for sure.


Virtualization is really a broad topic, and I'm afraid unless you try to focus on a certain type of virtualization you won't really get much out of whatever book you choose. There's Operating System virtualization, Profile virtualization, Hardware virtualization, Software virtualization....the lists goes on and on, and because it is so fragmented I wouldn't trust any book that covers all of them as a whole.

I think the phrase "Popek and Goldberg" already defined the field. – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 12 '09 at 15:20

If you are going to use VMware, I highly recommend VMware INfrastructure 3 Advanced Technical Design & Advanced Operations Guide:

I find this book to be great reference, but not really a good book for a beginner trying learn the ropes. – mrTomahawk Jun 12 '09 at 13:09
It seems to be too high-level and product-specific. Rather a "how-to-administer" than "how-it-works". – Andrew J. Brehm Jun 15 '09 at 9:24

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