Recently I saw a tweet, talking about new VMware Community which is specialized in running nested VMs. This practice is very popular those days, since by using single piece of hardware in the lab, you can optimize your learning experience and create multiple nested environments with ESXi or Hyper-V servers. I already talked about How to run nested Hyper-V in WMware Workstation in my post here.
Running nested ESX(i) servers and VMs needs sometimes some special tweaks to VMx files and other tweaks and requirements. Also there is special terminology introduced:
Nested VMs – running VM inside a VM ( usually you run a “virtual ESX on the top of your physical ESX, but you can also run, like in my case, Win 7 > VMware Workstation 8 > Virtual ESXi 5 > Nested VM on the top of it)
That's why there is another term introduced – The inner guest – is the VM that runs within another VM.
With Version 8 of VMware Workstation ( and player 4), those products offers a support for Intel VT-x and EPT or AMD-V and RVI through the confiration at the VM level, so you can run nested 64 bit systems.
Menu VM >Settings > processor settings > Check the box next to “Virtualize Intel VT-x/EPT or AMD-V/RVI.”
A quick quote from the Community page:
“Most hypervisors require hardware-assisted virtualization (HV). VMware products require hardware-assisted virtualization for 64-bit guests on Intel hardware. When running as a guest hypervisor, VMware products also require hardware-assisted virtualization for 64-bit guests on AMD hardware. The hardware-assisted virtualization features of the physical CPU are not typically available in a VM, because most hypervisors (from VMware or others) do not virtualize HV. However, Workstation 8, Player 4, Fusion 4, and ESXi 5.0 offer virtualized HV, so that you can run guest hypervisors which require hardware-assisted virtualization.
With virtualized HV enabled for the outer guest, you should be able to run any guest hypervisor that requires hardware-assisted virtualization. In particular, this means that you will be able to run 64-bit nested guests under VMware guest hypervisors.”
Some links for VMware Workstation 8:
VMware Workstation 8 new features detailed
VMware Workstation 8 – how to run Hyper-V
VMware Workstation 8 – configure autostart
VMware Workstation 8.0.1 Released
VMware Workstation 60 Days Trial
VMware Workstation 8.0.1 Academic – Save Big – For Faculty Staff, Students and Teachers.
VMware Workstation 8.0.1 Volume Licensing – for 10 and more copies.
You can buy the full product here.
You can upgrade your existing VMware Workstation here.
You can find many more information on the community page here.
Source: VMware Communities – Nested VMs