VMware Play, my favorite virtual machine client, has a new version 6 that fully supports the upcoming Windows 8.1. It’s a full featured desktop virtualization product that not only runs virtual machines but also creates them with support of multiple different platforms. It also offers a better graphics, faster performance, with tighter integration with the host platform.
But the bigger change comes to its name change that also adds a clause to limit its free use for personal only. Starting as version 6, VMware Player will be limited for non-commercial use only, while VMware Player Plus will be the commercial licensed copy that will cost you $99US to have. Other than a price tag and license clause, VMware Player and VMware Player Plus are basically exactly the same thing.
The other minor improvement in version 6 is the support of running restricted virtual machines created by VMware Workstation that are encrypted, blocked USB devices, require a runtime password, and enforce an expiration date. But note that you still cannot create a restricted virtual machine in VMware Player.
If you are already running VMware Player, you will likely get the upgrade notification from the program. And I would suggest upgrading it to get prepared for the arrival of the upcoming Windows 8.1. If you haven’t used VMware Player, it may be the time to get started.
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Last updated: 08/04/2014