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ZeroVM vs SmartOS: What are the differences?

ZeroVM: Open-source lightweight virtualization platform. ZeroVM is an open source virtualization technology that is based on the Chromium Native Client (NaCl) project. ZeroVM creates a secure and isolated execution environment which can run a single thread or application. ZeroVM is designed to be lightweight, portable, and can easily be embedded inside of existing storage systems; SmartOS: Converged Container and Virtual Machine Hypervisor. It combines the capabilities you get from a lightweight container OS, optimized to deliver containers, with the robust security, networking and storage capabilities you’ve come to expect and depend on from a hardware hypervisor.

ZeroVM and SmartOS can be categorized as "Virtual Machine Platforms & Containers" tools.

Some of the features offered by ZeroVM are:

  • Small, Light, Fast - ZeroVM is extremely small, lightweight, and fast. An execution environment can start in as little as 5 milliseconds.
  • Secure - ZeroVM security is derived from the Chromium Native Client (NaCl) project and is based on the concept of software fault isolation.
  • Hyper-Scalable - ZeroVM makes it easy to create large clusters of instances, aggregating the compute power of many individual physical servers into a single execution environment.

On the other hand, SmartOS provides the following key features:

  • Secure containers
  • Full isolation per container in a multi-tenant environment
  • Built-in networking

ZeroVM is an open source tool with 744 GitHub stars and 72 GitHub forks. Here's a link to ZeroVM's open source repository on GitHub.

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- No public GitHub repository available -

What is SmartOS?

It combines the capabilities you get from a lightweight container OS, optimized to deliver containers, with the robust security, networking and storage capabilities you’ve come to expect and depend on from a hardware hypervisor.

What is ZeroVM?

ZeroVM is an open source virtualization technology that is based on the Chromium Native Client (NaCl) project. ZeroVM creates a secure and isolated execution environment which can run a single thread or application. ZeroVM is designed to be lightweight, portable, and can easily be embedded inside of existing storage systems.

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What are some alternatives to SmartOS and ZeroVM?
CoreOS
It is designed for security, consistency, and reliability. Instead of installing packages via yum or apt, it uses Linux containers to manage your services at a higher level of abstraction. A single service's code and all dependencies are packaged within a container that can be run on one or many machines.
OpenStack
OpenStack is a cloud operating system that controls large pools of compute, storage, and networking resources throughout a datacenter, all managed through a dashboard that gives administrators control while empowering their users to provision resources through a web interface.
Linux
A clone of the operating system Unix, written from scratch by Linus Torvalds with assistance from a loosely-knit team of hackers across the Net. It aims towards POSIX and Single UNIX Specification compliance.
Docker
The Docker Platform is the industry-leading container platform for continuous, high-velocity innovation, enabling organizations to seamlessly build and share any application — from legacy to what comes next — and securely run them anywhere
FreeBSD
An operating system for a variety of platforms which focuses on features, speed, and stability. It is derived from BSD, the version of UNIX® developed at the University of California, Berkeley. It is developed and maintained by a large community.
See all alternatives