Home > computer, hackintosh, macintosh, windows > VMware Vs Virtualbox, round 1

VMware Vs Virtualbox, round 1

VMware fusion VirtualboxI recently discovered Virtualbox, a free virtual machine client for Windows, Mac and Linux. I’ve had a chance to start some basic benchmarking of Virtualbox, so here are the results compared to VMware fusion. As a reminder, I’m running Mac OS 10.5.2 on a Core 2 Quad @3Ghz with 2Gb ram and a 500Mb Samsung HD501LJ hard drive.

The first test was boot time. Both apps were the only ones running on the Mac, with 512Mb memory allocated and one virtual processor. Windows XP Pro was the guest operating system, freshly installed with nothing extra but a virus checker added and all the latest Windows software updates. Time was measured from clicking the start button for the Virtual Machine to the appearance of the Windows desktop taskbar. VMware took 21 seconds, Virtualbox took 17 seconds. Fairly close, but impressive for the free Virtualbox to knock a few seconds off the commercial VMware.

Next up was Geekbench. I’ve used this quite a bit lately to get an idea of how fast my hackintosh is compared to previous and current computers. Here are the results for VMware and Virtualbox compared to some other computers.

Geekbench Score
Dual Xeon 2.4Ghz, 1Gb ram, Abit PC-DL motherboard, Windows XP
Macbook 1.83Ghz, 2Gb Ram, Mac OS 10.5.1
Core 2 Quad 3Ghz, 2Gb Ram, Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R, Mac OS 10.5.2 (hackintosh)
VMWare Fusion running Windows XP with 512Mb Ram on hackintosh
Virtualbox running Windows XP with 512Mb Ram on hackintosh

Some unusual results here, so a bit of explanation is in order. Virtualbox gave a consistent result over several runs, but VMware was very erratic. The first run gave a result of over 29,373 when there was no way it was running ten times faster than Virtualbox. Second run returned 5,023, third run was 16,124. I don’t know what the problem was here, so I will do a bit of investigating for the next installment.

The rest of the results show Virtualbox to be performing well. My old Dual Xeon machine running XP natively scored 1,560 under Geekbench, and the Virtualbox XP score of 2885 left that for dust. It also trounced the Macbook. It looks like Virtualbox running Windows XP can handle any non-gaming tasks, so next time I will try some real world tests.

  1. Brad
    December 4, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    Hey there I am trying to install XP on a mac mini. The mini is brand new and running snow leopard. The drawing program my kids have from fisher price only runs on windows. Virtual box uses a virtual graphics adapter, and therefore the software for the drawing program will not install, because it doesn’t like the virtual adapter. Is there a way to force virtual box to use the Nvidia 9400m on board graphics instead?

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