Your IP: Unknown · Your Status: ProtectedUnprotectedUnknown


(also virtual machine monitor)

Hypervisor definition

A hypervisor, or virtual machine monitor (VMM), is software, firmware, or hardware that creates and manages virtual machines (VMs). Hypervisors provide the means for a host computer to support multiple guest VMs, each with its operating system (OS) and applications running simultaneously and independently.

See also: Intel virtualization technology, data center virtualization, host virtual machine

Hypervisor examples

  • Server virtualization: Businesses use hypervisors to create a virtualized environment, allowing multiple VMs to run on a single server to maximize resource utilization.
  • Testing environments: Developers use hypervisors to create isolated VMs for testing applications on different operating systems without needing separate hardware for each.

Hypervisor types and comparison

Two main types of hypervisors exist: Type 1, also called “bare metal,” and Type 2, or “hosted.”

Type 1 hypervisors run directly on the system’s hardware to control and manage the guest VMs, offering high performance and efficiency. Examples include Microsoft Hyper-V and VMware ESXi.

Type 2 hypervisors run as an application on an existing host OS, providing a less efficient but more user-friendly option for consumer use. Examples include Oracle VirtualBox and VMware Workstation.

Advantages and disadvantages of hypervisors


  • Efficiency: Hypervisors enable better utilization of system resources by distributing them among multiple VMs.
  • Isolation: Each VM operates independently, enhancing security and stability.


  • Resource demand: Running multiple VMs requires a significant amount of system resources, which may slow down system performance.
  • Complex management: Managing multiple VMs and their respective operating systems can be complicated.

Using hypervisors

  • Ensure your system has enough resources (CPU, memory, and storage) to handle the number of VMs you plan to run.
  • Choose the right type of hypervisor based on your needs, considering factors like performance, ease of use, and cost.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security

We value your privacy

This website uses cookies to provide you with a safer and more personalized experience. By accepting, you agree to the use of cookies for ads and analytics, in line with our Cookie Policy.