Comparison between Proxmox vs. VMware


Traditionally, IT companies often have several traditional big servers or computers, where each server handles an application, and only a fraction of that server’s storage is utilized. However, as technology advances, the need for the utilization of computing resources to accommodate scalability, efficiency, and cost management becomes imminent.

By providing multiple Virtual Environments (VEs) on a single physical server, virtualization technology has brilliantly proven to be a revolutionary force and a go-to technology for managing and utilizing computing resources.

Therefore, instead of having one application in one server, virtualization technology provides an avenue to virtualize a big server by creating different Virtual Machines (VMs) in the server where each application can be stored, each part running as an independent system. This way, the server’s storage is:

  • fully and efficiently utilized
  • save cost
  • enhance overall efficiency
  • simplify the activities of DevOps

Whilst the two notable names at the frontier of virtualization technology are Proxmox and VMware, there has been an unending debate of “Proxmox vs. VMware, which one is better?”

Most times, users go online to seek clarity from online resources but only seem to find very limited resources that do not even address the debate holistically.

Therefore, we are going to make a detailed comparison between these two giants to help you make informed decisions when seeking virtualization solutions.

What Is Proxmox?

Proxmox VE is an open-source virtualization platform that utilizes the Kernel-based VM (KVM) hypervisor technology and the Linux Containers (LXC) technology to provide a versatile solution for building and operating a virtualized environment.

What Is VMware?

VMware is a proprietary code kernel-based VM hypervisor that uses enterprise-class virtualization to provide robust virtualization capabilities with automation and advanced management tools.

Proxmox vs. VMware: The Differences

Although VMware and Proxmox are both type-1 hypervisors and share features relative to this hypervisor type, they still differ in other important areas:

Core Functionalities & Features

  • Web Client UI & Security: Proxmox’s reinforced built-in firewall requires command-line work for advanced configurations. On the other hand, VMware has a more advanced configuration UI that requires no command line.
  • VM Image Format: Proxmox has the Generic Linux KVM feature that supports many VM image formats like HDD, QCOW, QCOW2, QED, and VDI compared to VMware.
  • Operating System Support: Proxmox supports more operating systems than VMware does because of its KVM virtualization feature that is compatible with multiple operating systems which cover multiple Linux distributions, BSD operating systems, Windows OS, macOS, and Android.
  • License and Source Code: Proxmox VE is open-source; it is free to use, share, and modify but VMware is close-source and proprietary.
  • Cost: Both Proxmox and VMware have free and paid versions. However, Proxmox is less expensive than VMware.


  • Network Setup: Setting up a network on Proxmox is cumbersome. You have to manually fill in your network details, and this may take a series of trial and error. VMware takes away this problem with an advanced network configuration.
  • Physical Memory Size: Proxmox has a memory of 12 TB maximum while VMware has a memory of 24 TB maximum.
  • Hosts per Cluster: Proxmox takes up a maximum of 32 hosts per cluster while VMware takes up a maximum of 96 hosts per cluster.
  • VMs per Host Server: There is no limit to the number of VMs a host server can have on Proxmox while VMware’s maximum limit is 1024 VMs per host.
  • Virtual Disk Size: Proxmox has No limit while VMware has a maximum limit of 62 TB.
  • Boot Speed: VMware has a boosted boot speed rate as it suspends the VM to the memory booting system and reduces downtime.


In addition to this, another important point to consider is VMware’s rapid disaster recovery ability, which can be linked to its excellent commercial support packages as well as a large community of users who can provide several forms of assistance at any given instance.


Who Are the Ideal Users of Proxmox and VMware?

Proxmox is best suited for personal/home use, running small applications as well as Small and Medium Businesses while VMware is best for Medium to Large Enterprises. The open-source nature of Proxmox has better storage support and flexibility than VMware.

On the other hand, large corporations need virtualization technology platforms that are more sturdy, sophisticated, and reliable, and VMware meets these requirements.



In conclusion, the subject of “Proxmox vs. VMware, which one is better?” does not have a specific answer as both have their pros, cons, and features that not only outweigh the other but also attend to particular use cases.

As a result, the decision between Proxmox and VMware depends on the organization’s needs and available resources.

If you are considering a free and open-source solution because of limitations in finances, then it is advisable to opt for Proxmox. But in the instance that you are after a feature-rich option with sufficient commercial support, then VMware is a better option.


Source: hackernoon

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