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VMware Fusion Virtualization Gives Physicists the Best of Both PC and Mac Worlds
VMware Fusion Helps CERN Physicists Analyze Data From Coolest Place on Earth

VMware announced physicists at CERN use VMware Fusion to share Linux-based computer code via VMware virtual machines running on Apple hardware.

Virtual machines created with VMware Fusion are used by the physicists working on the experiments that run on the world’s largest particle accelerator, Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The LHC is the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, producing beams seven times more energetic than any previous machine and around 30 times more intense when it reaches design performance. Housed in a 27-kilometre tunnel, the LHC has operating temperature of 1.9 degrees above absolute zero (-271C). By studying collisions at higher energies than ever before, physicists will make further progress in understanding the mysteries of how our Universe is made and how it came to be.

With VMware Fusion, physicists use Macintosh hardware to run Linux-based software which links to LHC Computing Grid – a network of more than 150 computing centres with approximately 40,000 CPUs, handling 15 petabytes of new data each year. This Grid, which provides computing power for some of the organization’s most advanced experiments, can be accessed from CernVM, a customized Linux operating system running in a lightweight VMware virtual machine deployed on a range of PC and Mac workstations and laptops.

“CERN is a truly global organization and its physicists use a wide range of PC and Mac machines based on their particular requirements, creating a heterogeneous computing environment,” said Predrag Buncic, Virtualization R&D project leader at CERN. “This can make it very difficult to deliver applications to all our physicists, which is why we are exploiting how virtualization technology can help us achieve these goals. With VMware Fusion, Mac users can use the exact same virtual machines—with the exact same software—on their Mac hardware as our PC users run using VMware Player.”

“VMware Fusion has proven to be a very stable, robust and easy to use platform,” said Buncic. “Performance levels have been impressive with VMware Fusion in the face of some particularly demanding number-crunching and modeling tasks performed by our physicists.”

“Macs have long been popular with consumers due to their clean and simple interface, reliability and security. What’s more, an increasing amount of business users are also making the Mac their preferred platform of choice,” said Reza Malekzadeh, senior director of product and marketing, VMware. “VMware Fusion gives businesses more freedom and flexibility in terms of the operating systems they can support and allows Mac users to run all the PC applications they need on their Mac hardware in a seamless and straightforward fashion. It has given CERN an excellent solution to the challenges presented by the lack of a standard hardware platform and is a key part of CERN’s virtualization initiative.”

For more information on VMware contact Mary Ann Gallo, mgallo@vmware.com at VMware.

About Virtualization News
SYS-CON's Virtualization News Desk trawls the news sources of the world for the latest details of virtualization technologies, products, and market trends, and provides breaking news updates from the Virtualization Conference & Expo.

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