Sun Microsystems just released the latest version of its virtualization software VirtualBox. VirtualBox 3.0 is equipped with loads of features and bug-fixes that take virtualization to next level.
For starters, virtualization is a technology that allows a single computer to act as many. This is done by running multiple OSs inside a main OS that hosts the virtualization software. Thus you can run Linux, Mac, Unix and Solaris side by side on the top of Windows 7! This is quite different with dual-boot as in dual booting, you have to choose an operating system at the time of booting itself and if you want to switch to another OS you have to reboot to boot into that OS.
VirtualBox 3.0 boasts of features like capability to use Direct3D 8/9 for Windows guests and support for OpenGL 2.0 for Windows, Linux and Solaris guests. This means support for rich graphic applications like games. What is more notable about this cross-platform software is the capability of guest operating systems to use 32 virtual CPUs simultaneously. What this means is that VirtualBox is now capable of running not only desktop OS but also it is capable of handling server based OS and applications like database servers that demand high performance and put a lot of stress on system.
VirtualBox is completely free to use for personal use. For enterprise-wide deployments one can purchase a license.