I had a coworker ask me the legality of using vmplayer 5.0.  He installed it and noticed “Non-commerical use only” across the top of the window.

The vmplayer by simple definition should not be used in a commercial setting.  However, it was not really being policed. I figure it was used to get people interested in the workstation product.

The new banner changed that perception as I think it will be policed now.  Especially, after the failed attempt to charge ESX users for RAM.

At the bottom of the window, there was a “Buy Now” link. I decided to see what it would cost to make it legal and clicked the link.

I was taken to their site and presented with the page for purchasing their Fusion product.

Problem is this package is Macintosh based and we don’t have any.

I contacted VMware and after an exchange; the answer is yes we either have to purchase Fusion or Workstation to use vmplayer.

The problem I have with this answer is 1) Fusion is for Macintosh’s and we don’t use them.  2) If I have Workstation, why would I want vmplayer?

The answer I received was Fusion is cheaper then Workstation.

I suspect this approach is because Fusion probably doesn’t sell that well.  Especially, in a corporate environment. Not really a solution as I can’t justify purchasing software I can’t use.

If VMware had simply charged a fee to use vmplayer, I would have purchased licenses.

I now have a small project to remove vmplayer. Time to look at xendesktop, virtual PC, and the Oracle product.