How to choose the Best CPU for Virtuatization Needs

Virtualization is a technological process that enables us to create numerous virtual –rather than actual- representations of something, ranging from servers, storage devices, networks, and virtual applications. It is a highly efficient and responsive process and also the single most effective way of reducing I.T. expenses for any business. The main concept of using virtualization is to manage workloads and significantly reduce the number of physical servers. This helps in reducing the energy required for cool and also saves time. The three major types of virtualization are storage virtualization, server virtualization, and client virtualization.

Virtualization (also known as a v12n) plays a very important role in organizations. It is most preferred because of its cost-effectiveness and convenience over physical servers. The major reasons that make organizations adopt virtualization in their processes include:

Increased productivity which is caused by using minimal servers that are easy to maintain and manage. As a result, workers in the technology department have ample time to spend time on other major organizational projects, cost-cutting, and income-generating activities.

Consolidation of a few physical servers through migration of physical servers to virtual applications and software. This helps in saving energy and research has shown that up to 80% of energy is saved during the consolidation of servers.

Easier back up of data and procedures. Virtualization enables both virtual servers and virtual machines to do a complete back up on snapshots which ensure availability of up to date data. This, in turn, allows speed and ease of deployment and movement of machines from one point to another.

Uptime increase. Virtualization makes use of very advanced features unavailable in physical servers. This enables isolation of processes to function and operate separately meaning that the operation of a single unit happens independently without any interference.

Business continuity. This refers to the ability to maintain and continuously deliver products and/or services even when an unforeseen disruption occurs. Virtualization has enabled business entities to maintain a strong continuity because staff will no longer have to deal with challenges of physical hardware getting lost and lack of data back-up. Strong business continuity is further made possible by significant cost energy saving, reduction in operating costs and also increased efficiency.

What is Intel vPro?

Intel Virtualization Technology, formerly known as Vanderpool, is a technology found in Intel processors which enable consolidation and hosting of multiple operating systems and environments to a single processor. It also makes a CPU act like several independent computers, thereby enabling numerous operating systems to function simultaneously from a single machine and is the company’s hardware support for processors running virtualization platforms subsequently reducing costs, complexity, and size. Intel VT enhances segregation of various computing environs with their preferred operating configuration by enabling general end users and service providers fully utilize the computing power of their hardware processors. Intel VT is also currently efficiently serving a wide range of customers in almost all business sectors.

What is AMD-V?

AMD Virtualization Technology is a technology that was developed by Advanced Micro Devices. It was announced in 2004, under the code-name Pacifica, and AMD released technical details in mid-2005. It enables AMD PRO-based clients to run multiple applications and operating systems on a single machine. This technology uses hardware to perform tasks that virtual machine managers do through software emulation by incorporating virtualization extensions and simplifies those tasks in a processor’s instruction set. AMD Virtualization technology is adopted by most companies to support the following functions: Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, Client-Side Virtualization, and Blade PC, OS Streaming and Terminal Services among other functions.

The information below gives an overview and explains in detail the advantages and disadvantages of top CPUs for using with VMware, Parallels or VirtualBox

Top 10 Best CPU for Virtualization Software like VmWare, Parallels or VirtualBox

Best Overall CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 2700X

AMD Ryzen 7 2700X is a high-end performance desktop processor introduced by AMD Ryzen Processors and launched on 19th April 2018 and has the following main specifications:

Specs

  • Model AMD Ryzen 7 2700X
  • Socket AM4
  • Cores 8
  • Threads 16
  • Base clock 3.7 GHz
  • Boost clock 4.3 GHz
  • Lithography 12nm
  • Integrated Graphics N/A
  • TDP 105W

It consists of two memory channels type DDR4 with a specification of 2933MHz and contains the following supported technologies;  AMD SenseMI Technology, AMD Ryzen Master Utility, AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Premium, and AMD Store MI Technology.

It offers the following Operating Systems support namely, Windows 10-64 Bit edition, Ubuntu *86 64-Bit edition and RHEL *86 64- Bit.

However, the Operating System is different based on the manufacturer. Its major benefit is all chips are unlocked and excellent all-round performance and is disadvantaged by lack of integrated graphics and lower clock speed than Intel.

Best high-end CPU: Intel Core i9-9900K

Intel Core i9-9900K is a ninth generation Intel Core with the most powerful CPU. It has an overkill chip for web browsers and is very effective for gamers, creative functions and virtualization software like VmWare. It comprises of the following performance specifications:

Specs

  • Model Intel Core i9-9900K
  • Socket LGA1151
  • Cores 8
  • Threads 16
  • Base clock 3.6 GHz
  • Boost clock 5 GHz
  • Lithography 14nm
  • Integrated Graphics Intel UHD Graphics 630
  • TDP 95W

Processor graphics specifications include a graphics base frequency of 350MHz, a maximum video memory of 64GB, has a clear video and HD Intel Clear technology, supports 4K at 60Hz and has a processor graphics Intel of UHD630.

Other specifications include the possibility of expansion options, favorable package sizes and consists of advanced technologies such as Intel turbo boost and Intel Pro Platform Eligibility. It is also enriched with security and reliability features like Intel Boot Guard and Secure Keys. This Intel core boasts of the fastest desktop processor but is very expensive to acquire.

Best Mid-Range CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 2600X

AMD Ryzen 5 2600X is a second generation CPU that performs commendably with tasks that depend on either multi or single-core setups. The major specification of this CPU:

12 threaded all round 6 core tasks like gaming with additional features such as 4.2GHz maximum boost clock

Specs

  • Model AMD Ryzen 5 2600X
  • Socket AM4
  • Cores 6
  • Threads 12
  • Base clock 3.6 GHz
  • Boost clock 4.2 GHz
  • Lithography 12nm
  • Integrated Graphics N/A
  • TDP 95W

It consists of two memory channels type DDR4 with a specification of 2933MHz and contains the following supported technologies;  AMD SenseMI Technology, AMD Ryzen Master Utility, AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Premium, and AMD Store MI Technology.

It offers the following Operating Systems support namely, Windows 10-64 Bit edition, Ubuntu *86 64-Bit edition and RHEL *86 64- Bit. It is highly preferred because of its good multi-threaded performance but has a worse value when overclocking especially with Wraith Spire.

Best Entry Level CPU: AMD Ryzen 3 2200G

AMD Ryzen 3 2200G is an excellent performing CPU for light gaming and virtualization needs. In case it’s being used for building a budget desktop, it eliminates the need to install a separate GPU as it has an onboard graphics processor. This CPU contains the following specifications:

Specs

  • Model AMD Ryzen 3 2200G
  • Socket AM4
  • Cores 4
  • Threads 4
  • Base clock 3.5 GHz
  • Boost clock 3.7 GHz
  • Lithography 14nm
  • Integrated Graphics AMD Vega 8
  • TDP 65W

It consists of two memory channels type DDR4 with a specification of 2993MHz and contains the following supported technologies;  AMD SenseMI Technology, AMD Ryzen Master Utility, AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Premium, and AMD Store MI Technology. It offers the following Operating Systems support namely, Windows 10-64 Bit edition, Ubuntu *86 64-Bit edition and RHEL *86 64- Bit. This CPU is rated highly for its’ strong Vega graphics. Its main disadvantage is that it has requires very expensive memory to shine.

Best Gaming CPU: Intel Core i5-8600K

Intel Core i5-8600K is an 8th generation processor that has modern innovations which extend possibilities of previous generation CPUs to perform a variety of form factors. The major specs of this CPU are:

Specs

  • 5 Core
  • 6 threads
  • a processor base frequency of 3.6GHz
  • GT/s DMI3 bus speed8,
  • and 4.3GHz maximum turbo frequency

Memory specifications comprise of 64 GB maximum, 2 memory channels, memory bandwidth of 41.6 GB/s and a DDR4-2666 memory type. Processor graphics specifications include a graphics base frequency of 350MHz, a maximum video memory of 64GB, has a clear video and HD Intel Clear technology, supports 4K at 60Hz and has a processor graphics Intel of UHD630. Other specifications include the possibility of expansion options, favorable package sizes and consists of advanced technologies such as Intel turbo boost and Intel Pro Platform Eligibility. It is also enriched with security and reliability features like Intel Boot Guard and Secure Keys. The main benefit of this CPU is its superb performance in gaming and productivity apps. Its Heatsink requirement is a disadvantage.

Best VR CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 1800X

AMD Ryzen 7 1800X is an 8 core processor which features true machine intelligence and is the apex of desktop processing power. It has an integrated neutral network that customizes itself to meet application demands. Its main specifications:

Specs

  • 8 CPU core
  • 4GHz maximum boost clock,
  • 16 Threads, 3.6GHz base clock
  • 95W default TDP, Total L1 cache of 768KB
  • total L2 cache of 4B
  • total L3 cache of 16MB
  • has an unlocked chip
  • has a package of AM4
  • CMOS of 14nm FinFET
  • temperatures of 95 degrees C

a PCI express version of 3*16 and a cTDP of 46-65W. It consists of two memory channels type DDR4 with a specification of 2667MHz and contains the following supported technologies; Virtualization AES, AVX. It offers the following Operating Systems support namely, Windows 10-64 Bit edition, Ubuntu *86 64-Bit edition and RHEL *86 64- Bit. The major advantage of using this CPU is the low cost eight Cores but has a poorly optimized software ecosystem.

Best Video Editing CPU: Intel Core i7-7820X

Intel Core i7-7820X is an eight-core CPU processor which operates at a speed of 3.6GHz and provides computing performance for video editing, soundtrack composing and virtualization software like parallels or vmware. The major specs of this CPU:

Specs

  • 16 threads
  • a processor base frequency of 3.6GHz
  • GT/s DMI3 bus speed8
  • 4.3GHz maximum turbo frequency

Memory specifications comprise of 128GB maximum, 4 memory channels, and a DDR4-2666 memory type. Other specifications include the possibility of expansion, favorable package sizes, and advanced technologies such as Intel turbo boost and Intel HyperThreading technology. It is also enriched with security and reliability features like AES instructions. The main advantage of having this processor is its strong multi-threaded performance with regression in a performance of some applications poses a great risk to its users.

Best budget CPU: Intel Pentium G4560

Intel Pentium G4560 is a dual-core processor that has Hyper-Threading technology. It is considered one of the best processors because of its relatively fair acquisition price costing less than 70 USD. This CPU has the following specifications

Specs

  • 16 threads, operating frequency of 3.5GHz
  • L1 cache of 2*32kB Instruction
  • 2*32kB, L2 cache of 2*252kB
  • L3 cache of 1*3MB, data width of 64-bit
  • lithography of 14nm
  • thermal design power of 54W

Memory specifications comprise of 64GB maximum, 4 memory channels, and a DDR4-2666 memory type. Other specifications include the possibility of expansion, favorable package sizes, and advanced technologies such as Intel turbo boost and Intel Hyper-Threading technology. It is preferred by end users because of its affordability, great performance, excellent value, and hyper-threading. However, its main disadvantage is an unlocked chip

Best HTPC CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 2400G

AMD Ryzen 5 2400G has a four core, eight threaded design. Other additional features found in this CPU include:

Specs

  • 11 GPU Cores
  • 3.9GHz maximum boost clock
  • an unlocked chip
  • 3.6GHz base clock
  • 46-65W cTDP
  • 65W default TDP and Wraith Stealth thermal solution
  • Total L1 cache of 384KB
  • total L2 cache of 2MB
  • total L3 cache of 4MB
  • package of AM4, CMOS of 14nm FinFET
  • temperatures of 95 degrees C
  • PCI express version of 3*8

It consists of two memory channels type DDR4 with a specification of 2933MHz and contains the following supported technologies;  AMD SenseMI Technology, AMD Ryzen Master Utility, AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Premium and AMD Store MI Technology. It offers the following Operating Systems support namely, Windows 10-64 Bit edition, Ubuntu *86 64-Bit edition and RHEL *86 64- Bit. This CPU is preferred by buyers because it is efficient and great for HTPC and virtualization use but lacks superior processor performance.

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