Today we’re announcing the Technology Preview 2 of VMware AppCatalyst – a desktop hypervisor for developers. We’ve fixed a few bugs and added some features towards making AppCatalyst the developers hypervisor of choice. As with the original preview, the updated version will continue to be free. You can download the latest version from http://getappcatalyst.com
AppCatalyst now supports virtual machines with any flavor of Linux, BSD and Solaris. By leveraging the same code that ships in Fusion, Workstation and vSphere, we are able to bring you a fast and robust hypervisor with everything that a developer will need. If you are looking for a hypervisor with more advance functionality such as 3D graphics support, virtual USB support and Windows guest support, you are welcome to upgrade to Fusion (Fusion 8 was launched earlier this week).
With this release we’ve updated the Photon OS distribution that comes pre-bundled with AppCatalyst. Photon OS is VMware’s compact container host Linux distribution and it saves you a lot of time when you can point docker-machine at it and start up a Photon OS instance without having to download a Linux ISO. We leveraged the REST API in AppCatalyst to create this integration, as an example of showcasing the ease with with a developer can build their own integrations. In addition to the API, AppCatalyst continues to ship with a CLI. Another common use case for a desktop hypervisor is Vagrant and AppCatalyst ships with a vagrant provider so you can start using Vagrant immediately. We continue to work with the community to bring additional integrations to you in the near future.
We’ve also made some improvements to the user experience. AppCatalyst is automatically added to the users path during install. Similarly we’ve revamped our download site to ensure that you can get straight to the bits and easily access our community and documentation.
Our long term goal is to turn AppCatalyst into a data center on the desktop and towards that goals, we are announcing experimental support for ESXi in AppCatalyst. We are hopeful that this gets you one step closer to be able to run your data center programs and utilities on your desktop.