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Describe the types of VM based isolation.

Following are the types of Virtual Machine based isolation :

a. Process Virtual Machines:

  • Focus: Isolating individual processes or groups of processes.
  • Example: Running different applications in separate virtual environments.
  • Guarantee: Isolation is ensured by a runtime component, preventing direct access to resources.

b. System Virtual Machines (Hypervisor Virtual Machines):

  • Focus: Replicating the entire underlying platform, allowing full operating systems to run within it.
  • Example: Running multiple operating systems on a single physical machine.
  • Guarantee: The hypervisor (virtual machine monitor) mediates all hardware resource accesses, ensuring isolation.

c. Hosted Virtual Machines:

  • Focus: Built on top of an existing operating system (host), making the virtual machine look like an application.
  • Example: Using software like VMware GSX Server where virtual machines run as applications on top of the host OS.
  • Guarantee: Isolation is similar to the hypervisor approach, but the virtual machine monitor doesn’t run at the highest privilege.

d. Hardware Virtual Machines:

  • Focus: Utilizing virtualization features provided by hardware (processor or I/O).
  • Example: Taking advantage of hardware-assisted virtualization for improved performance.
  • Guarantee: Better isolation and security compared to software-based approaches due to direct support from the hardware.

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