Monday, July 28, 2008

Security Tools: VMWare ESXi for free

VMWare is one of my favorite tools for testing malware and for building test networks. Now, VMWare has released their ESXi hypervisor for free. The platform is very similar to ESX, with a smaller disk footprint.

VMWare also advertises ESXi's security features, citing the ability to "Enforce security for virtual machines at the Ethernet layer. Disallow promiscuous mode sniffing of network traffic, MAC address changes, and forged source MAC transmits."

I won't debate the differences in licensing models between VMWare's products and XEN or Microsoft's virtualization technologies here. Instead, I'll simply note that having virtualization capabilities and pre-built test environments for your common operating systems is where the real advantage is for malware analysis, architecture testing, and separation.

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