Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

VMs are great for many development tasks but can you use them to 'manage' desktops? I'm thinking of setting up some systems so that they can only execute a VM at startup. This seems like a good way to control desktops and keep them running clean. Is this true in practice or does it just add a layer of maintenance on top of the underlying OS?

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I think having everyone run a standard image sounds good in the beginning but it doesn't really buy you any more than installing from a standard image. Using a product like ghost seems like it would do just as much for you with out the added hassle of managing a VM environment on every machine

share|improve this answer

I think there's a big advantage in that you can have a standard image that's hardware-independent.

share|improve this answer

VM desktops are great for uncommonly used workstations. In our QA environment, the testers can utilize VMs each with different OS/software combinations. This is much simpler than maintaining a room full of physical desktops. You also have the added capability of snapshotting before installing new software to test.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.