VMware: Workstation Pro vs. Workstation Player

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Sep 14, 2021 • Filed to: Windows Computer Solutions • Proven solutions

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VMware is an amazing virtualization tool that allows the user to run multiple operating systems on top of one operating system as a virtual machine. It allows you to run operating systems like Linux and Windows together on one system at one time. This practice is more popular among professionals who run multiple operating systems at one system to be more efficient and agile.

You test almost any operating system on one computer without the need for any additional hardware. VMware offers two virtualization applications like VMware Workstation Player and VMware Workstation Pro. In this article, we will be explaining both of the tools and comparing them.


Part 1. Introduction of VMware Workstation Player

VMware Workstation Player is the free variant of VMware virtualization applications that are developed for the local public who are trying to learn the concept of virtualization or need a quick virtualization application to get their work done. You don’t need a license to use the VMware Workstation Player on your computer.

VMware Workstation Player is a fairly straightforward and simple-to-use app that allows you to run other operating systems as virtual machines on a single computer without any hassle. It has an easy-to-use and interactive interface that makes it easier for the user to understand the tool and make it work. One drawback of this version is that it does not allow you to run multiple virtual machines at once.

They added the support of the following host operating systems.

They also recently added the support for following guest operating systems


Part 2. Introduction of VMware Workstation Pro

VMware Workstation Pro is the paid version of the VMware virtualization applications. It has all the tools that a professional need to get their work done. Unlike the VMware Workstation Player, it can run multiple virtual machines at once on a single system without any hassle.

VMware Workstation Pro allows you to connect with the vSphere or ESXi servers. You also get to remote control vShpere Host Power Control. It has a lot more features than the free version lacks, like Clone Virtual Machine, create Snapshots, sharing Virtual Machines, etc.

It also has a Workstation Server feature that allows you to share your Virtual Machines over a network. Workstation Pro password protects the running Virtual Machines to protect the corporate data and secure the network.


Part 3. Comparison of VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro

Now that you understand the basic knowledge about the VMware Workstation Player and VMware Workstation Pro, we will explain the differences between each other in this part.

VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro: Requirements

Now when it comes to requirements, there no difference between these two applications. The basic requirement of both applications is given below.

VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro: Support OS Guest

Both of the applications support almost the same amount of guest operating systems. But the only drawback that VMware Workstation Player has is that you can not run multiple virtual machines at once, unlike VMware Workstation Pro. The list for the supported operating systems is given below.

VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro:  Virtual Machine Snapshots

Snapshot is a feature that allows you to save the virtual machine’s current state that you can later restore to a virtual machine after making necessary changes. When a snapshot is created, it creates a differencing virtual disk, and any changes that are made to the virtual machine are saved on the differencing virtual disk. You shouldn’t get confused thinking that snapshots are virtual machine backup.

VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro: Limits

There is no limit to creating virtual machines on both versions of VMware. You can simply create powerful virtual machines on both versions, and the only limitation is the hardware; if the guest operating system is 32-bit processor architecture, it is limited to only using 4 GB memory.

You can create virtual machines of up to 64 GB RAM, 16 virtual processors, and 3 GB VRAM on 64-bit architecture. Now given below are some of the features that are only available on the paid version and not the free version.

VMware Workstation Player VS Workstation Pro: Licensing

VMware Workstation Player

VMware Workstation Player is a free product and does not require any license if you are using it for personal or non-commercial use. The access of the VMware Workstation Player is restricted to organizations. However, organizations like universities are allowed to use the VMware Workstation Player for free for their students, but they still can not use the tool to create infrastructure for the university.

You must have to buy the VMware Workstation Player's license to use it for commercial purposes. You can buy the commercial license of the VMware Workstation Player 15 for only $150 for the first-time installation, but if you are upgrading from an older version, the license will cost you $80.

VMware Workstation Pro

VMware Workstation Pro is the complete version of VMware Workstation Player that comes equipped with all the restricted features of the VMware Workstation Player and many more. You can try the VMware Workstation Pro for free for a 30-day trial period before buying the license of the tool.

The license of the VMware Workstation Pro 15 costs $250 if you are installing it for the first time, but if you are upgrading from the older version, it will cost you $150. If your college or university is a part of the VMware Academic Program, you will be able to get an academic discount.
If you install the VMware Workstation Pro, the VMware Workstation Player gets installed as well on your computer.


Conclusion

The virtualization tools are a quick way to run multiple operating systems on one computer or laptop without the need to have additional hardware installed. VMware virtualization applications are one of the best tools to run the virtual machine. After reading this article, you will be able to distinguish between the VMware Workstation Player and VMware Workstation Pro.

We also described the different features and restrictions of both tools. You can simply follow the comparison part of this article to make a decision about which tool you should get.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is there any performance difference between both versions?

There is no speed or performance difference in both; free and paid versions when the same hardware is used. The performance depends upon the hardware and the operating system of one computer and not on the applications.

2. Does the VMware Workstation tool support VM cloning?

The VMware Workstation Pro provides the VM cloning feature. You can use the VM cloning feature to clone a VM from the current virtual machine or a virtual machine snapshot. This feature is not available on the VMware Workstation Player.

3. What applications can run on virtual machines?

You will be able to run any application or program that will work on a normal system. Virtual machines are the same as any other PC with no limitation. Each virtual machine has its own hardware like CPU, RAM, Storage, etc., that allows you to run any application on it.

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