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常見問題

What is a virtual machine?

For simplicity, think of a virtual machine (VM) as a "computer made of software" which you can use to run any software you'd run on a real, physical computer. Like a physical machine, a virtual machine has its own operating system (Windows, Linux, etc.), storage, networking, configuration settings, and software, and it is fully isolated from other virtual machines running on that host.

To run virtual machines on a desktop computer, you can explore Oracle VM Virtual Box.

Virtualization and hypervisors: What makes virtual machines work?

With virtualization, a single computer (host) can run multiple virtual computers (VMs) each with their own operating systems, processor cores, memory, storage, and networking. Because virtualization enables you to consolidate many small workloads onto a single physical computer, it ensures high resource utilization, which reduces IT expenses.

Virtualization is accomplished by a hypervisor—which holds the virtual machine and host computer together. A hypervisor is a layer of software that enables virtual machines to run on the host computer and distributes processors, memory and storage to each virtual machine.

VirtualBox is a popular virtualization product. It is a free, open source software that enables developers and IT administrators to quickly deploy operating systems. VirtualBox can be installed on macOS, Linux, and Windows. Other hypervisors include VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V.

VirtualBox for Mac OSX running a Linux virtual machine

Why Use a virtual machine?

The fact that virtualization consolidates many small workloads onto a single physical computer, it ensures greater efficiency, which lowers IT expenses.

Deploying a new virtual machine with an operating system and application(s) provides an easy way for IT administrators to deploy proofs-of-concept and DevTest environments before changing production environments.

Virtual machines may also provide simpler asset management by consolidating VMs onto fewer physical servers. Managing virtual machines may also save your company time by maintaining less hardware, provisioning resources faster, and reducing downtime. And they can also reduce the space needed to deploy servers—as a result, they also end up reducing energy consumption, which makes them a more eco-friendly solution as well.

Virtual machines can also be a cost-effective way to run legacy applications without having to migrate to a completely new operating system. As hardware ages or becomes obsolete, virtualization allows a user to have the best of both worlds: they can upgrade hardware but still retain access to older operating systems.

The best virtual machine is highly portable, meaning it can be moved between physical computers in a network, and even between on-premises and cloud environments. Running multiple virtual machines on the same host can optimize the use of system resources.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) is a platform that comes packed with the latest benefits of virtualization technology. OCI-based virtual machines provide secure, elastic compute capacity in the cloud for a variety of workloads—ranging from small development projects to large-scale applications. OCI allows virtual machines to be deployed, managed and decomissioned easily. In addition, OCI supports an extensive list of Microsoft Windows Server and Linux operating systems, with standardized images with secure configurations that can reduce human error, while lowering costs and improving security.

Oracle virtualization

Oracle offers integrated virtualization products, from desktop to data center and public cloud. Going far beyond simple consolidation, Oracle enables users to virtualize and manage a full hardware and software stack.

Learn more about how to manage your Oracle Linux KVM:

Oracle VM gives users the power to deploy operating systems and application software within a supported virtualization environment. Oracle’s offerings include:

Cloud computing and virtual machines

Virtualization is the core software that enables cloud computing, which has become such an essential tool that businesses who don’t use it are at a competitive disadvantage.

Containers vs. virtual machines

Containers and virtual machines are both used by developers and IT professionals to create isolated virtual environments for testing and developing software. Whereas a virtual machine depends on a host to run a complete operating system, a container is an isolated silo that runs an application on the host. Containers run applications that are not dependent on an operating system—rather, they isolate an application by virtualizing it.

Since containers don’t contain operating systems, containers are lightweight and more portable than virtual machines. And even though containers are portable, they’re still constrained by their operating system; so that a container for Windows is unable to run on Linux. In the end, deciding between a container or a virtual machine depends on how a virtual environment will be used..

VirtualBox for Mac OSX running a Linux virtual machine

Kubernetes is an open source system for managing applications in a container environment. Kubernetes automates the processes to deploy and scale container applications. Using multiple containers for an app has become a common practice, with the containers spread across several servers. Oracle Container Engine for Kubernetes is a managed service that enables the deployment of the containers, so they can scale to match the workload.

Learn more about the differences between building and deploying your applications on virtual machines versus Kubernetes.

Try Oracle Cloud Storage for free

A free Oracle Cloud account enables access to a number of Always Free services, including two Oracle Autonomous Databases and a range of other features. These Always Free resources are available without time constraints without interruption.