What users are saying about
201 Ratings
660 Ratings
201 Ratings
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Score 8.3 out of 100
660 Ratings
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Score 9.2 out of 100

Highlights

Hyper-V and VMware Exsi are both server virtualization software designed to reduce the need for physical systems. Both solutions allow for server partitioning, so users can create multiple virtual servers that can each run multiple instances of different operating systems.

Both VMware Exsi and Hyper-V are very popular with mid-sized businesses. VMware Exsi tends to be more popular with larger enterprises, perhaps due to its excellent stability and compatibility with other VMware software. Hyper-V is more popular with smaller businesses, likely due to its lower costs and simple migrations.

Features

Hyper-V and VMware Exsi both offer the essential server virtualization features, but they also each have some standout features that set them apart.

Hyper-V allows for quick deployments. Users can get new virtual servers set up in mere minutes. Quick server deployment may be important for organizations that will need to set up new servers often or have a limited amount of staff to handle all server deployment. Hyper-V also offers strong security features with the windows software it is packaged in with, Windows Active Directory. Lastly, it is effortless to create snapshot backups using Hyper-V, allowing new users to minimize data loss when mistakes are made.

VMware Exsi offers extreme stability for its virtual servers. Users are unlikely to experience a crash due to software error when using VMware Exsi. Businesses that utilize VMware technologies such as vSphere can also benefit from VMware Exsi’s seamless integrations with VMware software.

Limitations

Hyper-V and VMware Exsi both offer robust features for server virtualization, but they also have a few limitations that are important to consider.

Hyper-V has limited support for operating systems besides Windows. Though there are options for setting up Linux servers, it is not as easy or versatile as VMware Exsi. Hyper-V is also not quite as stable as VMware Exsi. Though Hyper-V crashes are still rare, and backup screenshots mitigate risk, crashes are more likely to occur compared to VMware Exsi.

VMware Exsi can be challenging to implement with some hardware as not all hardware is compatible with it. Additionally, VMware Exsi is not as user-friendly as Hyper-V, which is comparatively straightforward. Lastly, VMware Exsi doesn’t have backup features that are as robust as Hyper-V. As a result, care must be taken to avoid data loss when rollbacks are necessary.

Pricing

Hyper-V offers a free pricing package with limited features. This package is ideal for smaller businesses with smaller virtualization needs. Pricing for Hyper-V is dependent on organizational requirements but can stretch as high as $4,000 or more. The cost of Hyper-V can also increase based on what support the business needs.

VMware Exsi is available for free as part of the vSphere Hypervisor package, which includes essential tools for server virtualization. Additionally, the vSphere enterprise packages include VMware Exsi along with other VMware software, licensing, and support. Licensing for the vSphere package starts at $995.00 and can reach as high as $5395.00. Support and software subscriptions start at $270.00 per year and can reach as high as $2769.00 per year.

Likelihood to Recommend

Hyper-V

A specific scenario where Hyper-V is well suited would be for environment testing purposes. Let's say you want to learn or test a new OS for a product or just for learning purposes. You are able to boot up this OS in just a few mins on Hyper-V and then begin working, testing and learning with no money out of your pocket. You don't have to go out and build or buy a new PC (assuming your current PC has enough memory and CPU usage for a single VM.).I do not think there is a scenario where this would not be appropriate. This is not really a piece of software that you need to install to do other things. If you are enabling Hyper-V you are using it to create a virtual environment. The only time you really wouldn't use this is if your application would be better off running in a docker/container setup.
Charles R. Coggins III | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

I do like [VMware] ESXi, but the pricing is hard to swallow for a smaller company. I love the ability to have many options for backup solutions, like Veeam, but the functionality you get for the pricing can be hard to justify. That being said, if you are not virtualized, I definitely recommend something like VMware to get virtual[.]
Tom Blazek | TrustRadius Reviewer

Feature Rating Comparison

Server Virtualization

Hyper-V
7.7
VMware ESXi
9.0
Virtual machine automated provisioning
Hyper-V
8.0
VMware ESXi
8.9
Management console
Hyper-V
7.3
VMware ESXi
8.7
Live virtual machine backup
Hyper-V
7.6
VMware ESXi
8.9
Live virtual machine migration
Hyper-V
7.5
VMware ESXi
9.6
Hypervisor-level security
Hyper-V
8.2
VMware ESXi
8.8

Pros

Hyper-V

  • Checkpoints are the easiest in Hyper-V. Creating them on live systems, restoring a system to a previous checkpoint in seconds and maintaining the one you were just using in case you have to go back to it again.
  • Controlling the resources is extremely useful in Hyper-V as opposed to other solutions that have basic tools only. With Hyper-V you can assign specific number of cores of CPU, or amounts of RAM, and you can set these dynamically with a type of "importance" for each VM, so that if one VM is more essential than a 2nd one, but both are trying to consume 100% of the CPU/RAM, you can designate which server has the most importance and Hyper-V will give it the resources over the 2nd one.
  • Replicas are required! If your Hyper-V host dies, your company dies. If you have a Replica Hyper-V Host, you are in good shape! Spinning up a replica server can be done automatically when the primary VM fails, or manually to give you a chance to modify IP/MAC/HostName/etc. This can be done in seconds and have your company up and running again in moments versus days!
John Fester | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

  • High availability/vMotion for hosted VMs is a must-have in any business. No one wants their systems to fail, knowing that the hosted systems are protected and always available is a great stress reliever.
  • Load and resource balancing (with proper licensing) keeps busy servers from consuming all available resources on a given host. DRS and StorageDRS make short work of balancing workloads, I find this a must-have feature.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Cons

Hyper-V

  • For me, checkpoints have been a sore spot over the years. These are system snapshots, where you can roll back the system to a previous point in time if you encounter issues after installing updates, applications, or making changes to the system. I'm using Server 2016 and haven't tried them in this version, but earlier versions created all sorts of issues if you ran into a scenario where you needed to recover a VM. I don't use these, instead relying on Veeam backups.
  • Moving VMs from one server to another could be easier. To be clear, I'm not talking about Replica, but actual VM migration.
Nathan Roberts | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

  • The vSphere / vCenter GUI is complex. This is because there is just a crap-top of stuff that ESXi manages, so there is frankly a crap-top of necessary stuff that you have been able to manage in the user interfaces. The learning curve is a little steep. Just because it does a lot of things.
  • Live (powered on) ESXi snapshots of VMs still don't act as SQL backups very well. Snapshots can't backup SQL reliably because of the architecture of SQL and how it interacts with the live resources running on the VM. This is one of the many reasons why taking a snapshot works better when the VM is powered off. This is also why we don't rely only on snapshots to backup our VMs. We also use Veeam and for critical SQL databases we use native SQL backups and in one case, another backup solution (Veritas) that can do SQL better.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Likelihood to Renew

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 10.0
Based on 4 answers
Cheap and easy is the name of the game. It has great support, it doesn't require additional licenses, it works the same if it is a cluster or stand-alone, and all the servers can be centrally managed from a system center virtual machine manager server, even when located at remote sites.
Tim Starkenburg | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

VMware ESXi 3.8
Based on 2 answers
Me, not likely as my current company doesn't use it nor do I use it at home. However, I don't see my previous company ever switching away from it.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Usability

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 10.0
Based on 4 answers
It is very easy to configure new virtual machines and manage them. But you have to use different interfaces to perform various tasks. Especially as soon as it comes to clustering you have to use at least two different interfaces (Hyper-V Manager and Failover-Cluster Manager) to perform all necessary tasks. The newly released Windows Admin Center is a way into the right direction to get all management tasks into one single interface.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

VMware ESXi 10.0
Based on 1 answer
The interface is fairly intuitive for most things, and the areas that are a little less obvious usually have fantastic documentation in the online knowledgebase. In 3-4 years of managing our ESXi hosts, I think that I have only opened 4-5 support cases for things that I could not figure out myself or find answers to on the website.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Reliability and Availability

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 9.0
Based on 1 answer
In the past 2 years our Hyper-V servers have only had a handful of instances where the VM's on them were unreachable and the physical Hyper-V server had to be restarted. One time this was due to a RAM issue with the physical box and was resolved when we stopped using dynamic memory in Hyper-V. The other times were after updates were installed and the physical box was not restarted after the updates were installed.
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Performance

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 9.0
Based on 1 answer
Hyper-V itself works quickly and rarely gave performance issues but this can be more attributed to the physical server specifications that the actual Hyper-V software in my opinion as Hyper-V technically just utilizes config files such as xml, and a data drive file (VHD, VHDX, etc) to perform its' duties.
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Support Rating

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 8.0
Based on 18 answers
The largest reason for this rating is due to the Microsoft pay for support model. If the user has an active support agreement with microsoft then the support is good with timely responses and support personnel who will work the problems to completion. The knowledge bases are very large and difficult to search. There are a large number of resources available. Microsoft licensing models make it difficult to properly license environments.
James McCullough | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

VMware ESXi 8.9
Based on 72 answers
I have had to use support within VMware for ESXi twice in my 13 years of VMware administration. I am not counting times where VMware had to step in due to hardware issues or something similar to that. The two times I have engaged VMware support, I was pleasantly surprised in how they handled my issue and how they were sure everything was resolved for me.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

In-Person Training

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 8.0
Based on 1 answer
We had in person training from a third party and while it was very in depth it was at a beginner's level and by the time we received the training we had advanced past this level so it was monotonous and redundant at that point. It was good training though and would have provided a solid foundation for learning the rest of Hyper-V had I had it from the beginning.
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Online Training

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 9.0
Based on 1 answer
The training was easy to read and find. There were good examples in the training and it is plentiful if you use third party resources also. It is not perfect as sometimes you may have a specific question and have to spend time learning or in the rare case you get an error you might have to research that error code which could have multiple causes.
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Implementation Rating

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 10.0
Based on 2 answers
Make sure to test the upgrade on a machine with test VM's that are either backed up or are ok to be corrupted in case of failure. Other than that there are few things to worry about
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Alternatives Considered

Hyper-V

We use VirtualBox for non-production environments and pre-production testing because it's free. In our experience, we are not confident in VirtualBox for a production environment. On the flip-side, VMware is overkill for our needs and is too complex for our small I.T. dept to manage. Hyper-V is right in the middle. We already have it via existing licenses and it has a familiar feel to anyone who has used Microsoft's server operating systems.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

We did consider and have looked at MS Hyper-V a couple times over the years, but didn't like the perceived complexity (although we were biased by our understanding and use of ESX). We also (again fairly or not) didn't like the idea of MS servers being the underlying architecture with the current status of patching/upgrading.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

Scalability

Hyper-V

Hyper-V 9.0
Based on 1 answer
Nothing is perfect but Hyper-V does a great job of showing the necessary data to users to ensure that there is enough resources to perform essential functions. You can also select what fields show on the management console which is helpful for a quick glance. There are notifications that can be set up and if things go unnoticed and a Hyper-V server runs out of a resource it will safely and quickly shut down the VM's it needs to in order to ensure no Hardware failure or unnecessary data loss.
Bill Starling | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Return on Investment

Hyper-V

  • Positive: It saved my client money because they didn't have to provide an entire laptop for me. Instead, they just gave me a USB stick with an ISO file, which I used to load their image on my Hyper-V.
  • Negative: Downtime. I have spent a lot of time troubleshooting connectivity and stability issues within Hyper-V. So although it saved them the initial money of not having to provide a separate laptop, a lot of money was spent in man-hours trying to troubleshoot other issues.
  • Positive: Interfacing with the local system. How a VM interfaces with a local system can often be hit or miss. As an example, I'm referring to how easily it can copy/paste between the two systems. Hyper-V does this remarkably well, and it also handles screen sizing with ease.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer

VMware ESXi

  • As an early adopter of VMWare, we have see a tremendous ROI in our ability to be agile in our deployments
  • VMWare has made our backup simple for areas of our business not covered under our Snap Mirror; things such as our Synology as we use the API to backup VMDKs regularly. This is priceless to us.
  • VMWare has simplified the organization of machine roles which has cut down on man hour required to administrate our systems.
Colby Shores | TrustRadius Reviewer

Pricing Details

Hyper-V

General

Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No

Hyper-V Editions & Modules

Edition
Developer$24.951
Bronze$49.001
Silver$89.001
Gold$135.001
Platinum$199.001
  1. Per Month
Additional Pricing Details

VMware ESXi

General

Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Yes
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No

VMware ESXi Editions & Modules

Additional Pricing Details

Rating Summary

Likelihood to Recommend

Hyper-V
8.2
VMware ESXi
9.2

Likelihood to Renew

Hyper-V
10.0
VMware ESXi
3.8

Usability

Hyper-V
10.0
VMware ESXi
10.0

Reliability and Availability

Hyper-V
9.0
VMware ESXi

Performance

Hyper-V
9.0
VMware ESXi

Support Rating

Hyper-V
8.0
VMware ESXi
8.9

In-Person Training

Hyper-V
8.0
VMware ESXi

Online Training

Hyper-V
9.0
VMware ESXi

Implementation Rating

Hyper-V
10.0
VMware ESXi

Scalability

Hyper-V
9.0
VMware ESXi

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