KVM vs Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) comparison

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Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between KVM and Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out what your peers are saying about VMware, Proxmox, Microsoft and others in Server Virtualization Software.
To learn more, read our detailed Server Virtualization Software Report (Updated: November 2022).
657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"Good screen and keyboard sharing feature.""The most helpful aspect of KVM is the fact that the interface is so minimal. It includes just what you need to set up the VMs and manage them, and it's very simple to do so.""If you prefer command-line, there are all kinds of command-line options.""I like that it's easy to manage. It's also more powerful when it comes to security than others. That point of view is the one consideration. The other consideration is that it's cost-effective.""This solution is open source and easy to configure.""Very cost-effective.""I have found KVM to be scalable.""The GUI interface makes the management of KVM easier than ever before."

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"The most valuable features are the user-friendly dashboard and that we don't need to move resources manually when adding new nodes into running clusters.""Nutanix Acropolis AOS is easy to use, it is a great platform.""This operating system offers stability. Setup is straightforward.""It has a user-friendly dashboard and interface.""The pricing is pretty good.""The feature that I have found most valuable is its software Move, which we use to migrate virtual info from another platform to the Nutanix platform.""The solution is well integrated with other vendors.""The most valuable features are easy cloud administration and management."

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Cons
"One problem I have is that it's not very scalable when it comes to resizing the VM disk dimensions. For example, if you have initially set a virtual drive to 10 GB and you want to upgrade it to 15 GB, it's not that easy.""Technical support could be better. In the next release, I would like to see an improved user interface and dashboard. This type of improvement will make it easy or help our engineers understand the solution from a requirement point of view.""I have previously used VMware and KVM is easier to use. However, they both have their strengths depending on their use cases. They are mostly equal. One of VMware's advantages is it has better support.""Lacks high availability across clusters as well as support for Apache CloudStack.""Its resource usage can be improved.""One thing that maybe could be improved is making it easier to scale. It needs to be more clear on how to scale the storage space for virtual machines.""In our setup, we do not have any dashboards or orchestration, and it is hard to manage. We have 25 gig network cards, but the software driver we have only supported 10 gigs.""Business continuity features need to be added."

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"When we have issues with the solution, they tend to be around networking.""Deployment could be more user-friendly - currently, it requires certain skills with the network and nodes.""I would like them to update their licensing to provide more features with their basic license.""There are other services that Nutanix has that could be improved, but I'm not very familiar with the other services of Nutanix, such as Era and Flow. However, they seem a bit hard for us to implement and integrate with the Nutanix Acropolis AOS and other Nutanix tools. We would not dare to implement those other Nutanix solutions into Nutanix Acropolis AOS right now. The implementation of that tool could be the problem, I am a bit hesitant to implement the other tools into Nutanix Acropolis AOS.""I think some of the tasks that must be done using CLI could be added to the web interface.""We did have some integration issues.""As Nutanix Acropolis AOS is on the expensive side, one of its areas for improvement is the price. It would also be better if it can be integrated with other cloud providers, because currently, it's only for private cloud deployment.""The ability to create clusters faster would be nice to see in a future release."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "It is free for everyone."
  • "The price is fair compared to others. But in our local market, it's a problem to get budget approval from management. That's why they are trying to get those products so we can give them the price benefit. But if you consider the international market or other products, it's sometimes better than their price."
  • "We had some problems with the licensing."
  • "KVM is priced reasonably."
  • "There is no cost involved in the use of KVM, as it is open source."
  • More KVM Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "My advice is to get the ultimate license, as it is worth it."
  • "The setup cost, pricing, and licensing are very competitive and TCO is very low compared to three-tier solutions."
  • "Nutanix is cheaper than Cisco HyperFlex, although it depends on the configuration because Nutanix can also be expensive."
  • "The pricing is fair for the package."
  • "There is a license required for this solution and my clients usually purchase a two-year license with extended support. The price of the solution could be reduced, it is more expensive than competitors."
  • "The price of the solution is high."
  • "The pricing is quite good in comparison with HPE SimpliVity, Nutanix Scale, and even traditional architecture."
  • "When compared to the competitors, the price is reasonable."
  • More Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:KVM scales better, orchestration better, performs better and supports a wider range of hardware and, also, you can implement at ZERO cost and with a very powerful web interface for management, from… more »
    Top Answer:Small support team, small cluster, low core count, use VMware products Large support team, large clusters with many cores, use KVM. KVM scales better, orchestration better, performs better and… more »
    Top Answer:Far from being an expert, my opinion is that the positive sides of KVM are: Lower costs and open-source which gives the abilities to customize it according to the specific needs of each customer.
    Top Answer:We found the reduced power consumption with Nutanix Acropolis AOS a very attractive feature. We also like the interface that allows you to talk directly to your VM from the present software. We found… more »
    Top Answer: Cisco HyperFlex HS series vs Nutanix Acropolis AOS Cisco HyperFlex gives extended hyper-convergence functions from core to edge and multi-cloud environments. It helps IT and OT teams deploy… more »
    Top Answer:We found the reduced power consumption with Nutanix Acropolis AOS a very attractive feature. We also like the interface that allows you to talk directly to your VM from the present software. We found… more »
    Ranking
    Views
    54,020
    Comparisons
    44,447
    Reviews
    10
    Average Words per Review
    441
    Rating
    7.5
    1st
    out of 37 in HCI
    Views
    51,822
    Comparisons
    29,062
    Reviews
    72
    Average Words per Review
    491
    Rating
    8.7
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Nutanix Acropolis AOS, Nutanix AOS, Nutanix Acropolis
    Learn More
    KVM
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    Overview

    KVM stands for Kernel-based Virtual Machine, which is an open-source virtualization technology that is embedded in Linux. KVM allows users to seamlessly transform their Linux system into a hypervisor that, in turn, will enable a host machine to run numerous, isolated virtual environments or virtual machines (VMs).

    KVM is part of Linux. Users with Linux 2.6.20 or newer already have KVM. As KVM is already a component of the current Linux code, it automatically improves with every new Linux fix, feature, or upgrade. So KVM users are always current and up to date.

    KVM automatically transforms Linux to a type -1 (bare-metal) hypervisor. All hypervisors need operating system components, such as a process scheduler, I/O stack, device drivers, memory manager, and more, to run a VM. KVM already has these components embedded, as it is part of the Linux kernel. Each VM is generated as a basic Linux proces,s which is maintained by the standard Linux scheduler, with dedicated hardware such as a graphics adapter, memory, disks, network card, and CPUs.

    KVM Key Features:

    KVM has many valuable key features. Some of its most useful features include:

    • Storage: KVM has the ability to use any storage protocol supported by Linux, including network-attached storage (NAS) and some local disks. Multipath I/O can be utilized to provide redundancy and improve storage. Disk images use thin provisioning, ensuring storage is used on demand. KVM is also able to use shared file systems, enabling VM images to be shared on multiple hosts.
    • Hardware: KVM is able to use a vast number of Linux-certified supported hardware platforms. As hardware vendors routinely contribute to kernel improvement, the most up-to-date hardware features are generally quickly added to the Linux kernel.
    • Memory: KVM effectively utilizes the memory management features of Linux, such as kernel same-page emerging and non-uniform memory access. The memory of a VM can easily be switched, supported by large volumes for improved performance, then backed by a disk file or shared.
    • Migration: KVM actively supports live migration so users have the ability to move any running VM between physical hosts with no downtime.
    • Security: KVM uses a blend of secure virtualization (SVirt) and security-enhanced Linux (SELinux) for improved VM security and isolation. SELinux determines security boundaries surrounding VMs. sVirt expands SELinux’s processes, permitting Mandatory Access Control (MAC) security to be used for guest VMs and preventing any manual labeling issues.

    Reviews from Real Users

    “The most helpful aspect of KVM is the fact that the interface is so minimal. It includes just what you need to set up the VMs and manage them, and it's very simple to do so. KVM, as a native virtualization solution, is a complete and fully adequate system for small businesses that need to reduce costs, and also to make maintenance easier. “ - Georges E., Business Engineer and Consultant at All-Tech

    “The most valuable feature of KVM is the hypervisor environment and how we can configure it with ease. Additionally, the interface is intuitive.” Sonu S., Senior Solution Architect at Micro Focus

    Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) is a top-raking HCI software, cloud management tool, and Software Defined Storage (SDS) tool that is marketed as the foundation for users' hybrid clouds. It offers a powerful and secure hyperconverged infrastructure to deliver all data and applications at any scale and on any cloud. The solution offers a complete software stack that allows users to unify their hybrid cloud infrastructure. 

    NCI’s services include computer, storage and network, hypervisors and containers, and deployment in public or in private clouds. The product also comes with built-in resilience, disaster recovery capabilities, self-healing, and high-security capacities. It provides further deployment flexibility through several software and hardware options and platforms. NCI includes a full set of enterprise capabilities. It can also be deployed on a wide range of servers from popular manufacturers.

    The capabilities of the product are categorized into three main groups:

    • AOS storage
    • Flexible and open compute
    • Automated and secure networking

    Outside of these categories, NCI also offers other capabilities:

    • Integrated disaster recovery
    • Full-stack lifecycle management
    • VMware with Nutanix
    • Intelligent operations

    Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) Features

    Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) offers its customers various features and tools in each of the previously mentioned categories. The available features for users currently include:

    • High-performance: This set of features utilizes hardware advances such as NVMe and RDMA to accelerate users' most demanding applications with consistent performance. The tools in this feature category work alongside data locality to ensure successful results.

    • Foolproof resiliency: These Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure features protect data and keep it available by facilitating advanced distributed consistency algorithms. Users can utilize these features to protect their data from issues like bit rot, hardware failures, and even entire site failure.

    • Flexibility: This set of features allows storage to be sized for the needs of each organization and expanded promptly and easily so that the organization and its data can grow. The features offer flexibility to users in terms of applying storage policies logically on a pre-workload basis, instead of being tied to hardware.

    • Hypervisor choice: Users can choose from the leading hypervisors - Microsoft Hyper-V or VMware ESXi. They can also leverage the built-in hypervisor AHV that Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) provides.

    • Integrated virtualization: These features offer simplified automation and AHV streamlined operations. The services in this category are optimized for high performance and reliability.

    • Kubernetes: Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) offers features to build and deploy cloud-native applications on intelligent distributed infrastructure. Apps can be integrated with cloud-compatible storage and both building and deployment can be achieved within the same platform.

    • Microsegmentation: Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) offers features to prevent malware spread and reduce attack surfaces by leveraging machine learning (ML).

    • Virtual networking: This set of features allows users to easily implement multi-tenancy in their environment or stretch networks across clouds.

    • Centralized network management: Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) provides organizations with a way to manage networking configurations centrally. Users can utilize it across their human-computer interaction (HCI) environment with simple virtual switch management.

    Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) Benefits

    The product offers various benefits to users who utilize its capacities. Some of these include:

    • NCI reduces technology sprawl and frees up technical resources to allow organizations to focus on other activities, potentially reducing costs for the business.

    • The product allows customers to deploy, scale, and bridge to the public cloud to be able to react in evolving business environments.

    • Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure improves data availability while simultaneously protecting it against several kinds of failures and attacks.

    • The solution offers high-performance, resilient distributed storage for all workloads.

    • Working alongside Nutanix Cloud Platform, NCI offers simple management of data from one console.

    • Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure works by the zero trust philosophy, protecting users' apps and data through specially designed security protocols.

    Reviews from Real Users

    According to Gerhard J., an IT manager at Q4 Fuel, Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) provides serious reliability and stability across the entire system makes for ROI.

    A solutions architect at a computer software company describes NCI as a stable, straightforward to set up, and scalable solution.

    Offer
    Learn more about KVM
    Learn more about Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI)
    Sample Customers
    MediaWiki, Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia, Wikivoyage, Wikidata, Wikiversity, Commons
    St. Lukes Health System, the City of Seattle, Yahoo! Japan, Sligro, Empire Life, Hyundai AUS, and many others.
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Aerospace/Defense Firm22%
    Computer Software Company22%
    Energy/Utilities Company22%
    Financial Services Firm11%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider26%
    Computer Software Company19%
    Government7%
    Manufacturing Company5%
    REVIEWERS
    Computer Software Company17%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Energy/Utilities Company8%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company21%
    Comms Service Provider15%
    Government8%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business54%
    Midsize Enterprise11%
    Large Enterprise36%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business24%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise57%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business39%
    Midsize Enterprise29%
    Large Enterprise32%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business23%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise60%
    Buyer's Guide
    Server Virtualization Software
    November 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about VMware, Proxmox, Microsoft and others in Server Virtualization Software. Updated: November 2022.
    657,849 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    KVM is ranked 4th in Server Virtualization Software with 10 reviews while Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) is ranked 1st in HCI with 75 reviews. KVM is rated 7.6, while Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) is rated 8.6. The top reviewer of KVM writes "Reduces OpEx and is easy to maintain, along with low memory usage and a minimal interface". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) writes "Serious reliability and stability across the entire system makes for ROI". KVM is most compared with Proxmox VE, Oracle VM VirtualBox, Hyper-V, VMware Workstation and Odin Virtuozzo Containers, whereas Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) is most compared with VxRail, VMware vSAN, HPE SimpliVity, VMware vSphere and Rackspace OpenStack.

    We monitor all Server Virtualization Software reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.