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Proxmox VE vs XenServer: What are the differences?

Proxmox VE and XenServer are both popular virtualization platforms, each offering different features and capabilities. Let's discuss the key differences between Proxmox VE and XenServer.

  1. Hypervisor Type: Proxmox VE uses the Linux Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) as its hypervisor, while XenServer utilizes the Xen hypervisor. This difference in hypervisor type affects the way virtual machines are managed and overall performance.

  2. Management Interface: Proxmox VE provides a web-based management interface where users can easily manage their virtual machines, containers, and storage. On the other hand, XenServer offers XenCenter, a Windows-based management application that allows users to control and monitor their virtual infrastructure.

  3. License Type: Proxmox VE is an open-source virtualization platform, and therefore it is free to use with optional subscription-based support. XenServer, however, is a proprietary product that requires a commercial license for full functionality. This distinction may affect the cost considerations for organizations.

  4. High Availability: Proxmox VE supports High Availability (HA) clustering, allowing multiple hosts to work together, automatically migrating virtual machines in the event of a failure. XenServer also offers HA capabilities, ensuring continuous availability of virtual machines by enabling failover to other hosts in the cluster.

  5. Supported Operating Systems: Proxmox VE provides a wide range of supported guest operating systems, including various Linux distributions, Windows Server, and more. XenServer also supports numerous operating systems, but it focuses primarily on supporting Windows and Linux operating systems.

  6. Backup and Restore: Proxmox VE offers built-in backup and restore functionality, allowing users to easily back up their virtual machines, containers, and configurations. XenServer does not provide native backup and restore capabilities out of the box, and users need to rely on external tools or third-party solutions.

In summary, Proxmox VE, an open-source solution, integrates virtualization (KVM) and containerization (LXC) in a unified platform with a web-based management interface. XenServer, developed by Citrix, focuses on enterprise virtualization, providing advanced features like live migration and centralized management for virtual machines, making it suitable for large-scale and mission-critical virtualization deployments.

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Pros of Proxmox VE
Pros of XenServer
  • 9
    HA VM & LXC devices
  • 8
    Ease of use
  • 7
    Robust architecture
  • 6
    Avoid vendor lock-in
  • 6
  • 3
  • 2
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    What is Proxmox VE?

    It is a complete open-source platform for all-inclusive enterprise virtualization that tightly integrates KVM hypervisor and LXC containers, software-defined storage and networking functionality on a single platform, and easily manages high availability clusters and disaster recovery tools with the built-in web management interface.

    What is XenServer?

    It is a leading virtualization management platform optimized for application, desktop and server virtualization infrastructures. It is used in the world's largest clouds and enterprises.

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    What companies use Proxmox VE?
    What companies use XenServer?
    See which teams inside your own company are using Proxmox VE or XenServer.
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    What are some alternatives to Proxmox VE and XenServer?
    OpenStack is a cloud operating system that controls large pools of compute, storage, and networking resources throughout a datacenter, all managed through a dashboard that gives administrators control while empowering their users to provision resources through a web interface.
    KVM (for Kernel-based Virtual Machine) is a full virtualization solution for Linux on x86 hardware containing virtualization extensions (Intel VT or AMD-V).
    VirtualBox is a powerful x86 and AMD64/Intel64 virtualization product for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers, it is also the only professional solution that is freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 2.
    VMware vSphere
    vSphere is the world’s leading server virtualization platform. Run fewer servers and reduce capital and operating costs using VMware vSphere to build a cloud computing infrastructure.
    When used as a machine emulator, it can run OSes and programs made for one machine (e.g. an ARM board) on a different machine (e.g. your own PC). By using dynamic translation, it achieves very good performance. When used as a virtualizer, it achieves near native performance by executing the guest code directly on the host CPU. it supports virtualization when executing under the Xen hypervisor or using the KVM kernel module in Linux. When using KVM, it can virtualize x86, server and embedded PowerPC, 64-bit POWER, S390, 32-bit and 64-bit ARM, and MIPS guests.
    See all alternatives