Ubuntu – What’s the friendliest virtualization solution


I want to experiment with virtualization in Ubuntu 10.04 and have found the following list of hopefully relevant names:
Xen, OpenVZ, KVM, Vservers, EC2 and Solaris Zones, although this is just a sample list and the question is not exclusive to these.

From the community's experience, what virtualization solution should I use on Ubuntu to learn with?
Factors are ease of setup, ease of use. Stability is also important. Secondary are memory usage and performance issues.

What do I want to virtualize? Well, pretty much anything the chosen software will allow, under the banner of experimentation.

Best Answer

I'd recommend VirtualBox, if you're just getting started. (apt-get install virtualbox-ose) It's intended for running a virtual machine on a desktop (or laptop) computer, so that you can use both the virtual (guest) computer and the real (host) computer together. It gives you a nice GUI that you can use to create virtual machines and alter their settings. You can start and stop the virtual machine, so that if you need extra processing power for some task you're running on the host, the guest doesn't have to get in the way.

The names you gave in your question are more high-level, I think. They're the kinds of things I hear about in connection with virtual private server (VPS) companies, which are web hosting companies that use virtualization to provide several people with servers using one physical computer. They're probably somewhat more complicated to set up and maintain, and typically when you use something like Xen, the host computer isn't intended to do much besides serving as a "base" for the VPS's.