Now, the next tool we're going to look at is a product called VMware and it's not really a security tool per se, but a lot of security practitioners use it on a daily basis to test security tools and security configuration in a lab environment. Now, what VMware is is virtualization software. Virtualization software is used to create multiple virtual machines if you will on host machines, on host servers or PCs. Now with these virtual machines you can build complete virtual computers and networks and connect them together and test them and see how they interact with each other. This is an ideal environment for labs, for server testing, server consolidation, security testing and so forth. What a lot of security practitioners do is test security tools on these virtual machines. Now, you would not want to test some tools on a live server that may cause your anti-virus to trigger it and mistakenly identify it as a piece of malware for example. You'd probably want to test that security tool in a lab environment or in this case a virtual environment to see how it works before trying it in a production or real-world environment. So VMware basically is a big playground you can build that security practitioners use to test tools and configuration in. Now, there's virtualization software available out there for Windows, for Linux and for other platforms as well and also VMware is not the only product out there, although in my opinion it's one of the better ones out there; one of the more mature and stable ones. There's other great programs out there as well; some of them for free, some of them you have to pay a fee for. Some examples of really good virtualization software are Sun's VirtualBox; that's a very good one. Xen hypervisor and also Microsoft has its own line of virtualization products as well. So there's many different ones out there you can use. We're just going to look at VMware and see how it works and you can use it as well or you can choose one of the other products that is out there and a lot of them work the same and there's very similar concepts behind each one of them. Now, for VMware particular, how you use it is you would download it and get a license key from the VMware site and you'd install it and use that license key and you have to choose which version you want. It comes in a server version, which is a really nice web interface and that version is used to create and manage virtual machines and configure them. Then you also have a player version which only plays virtual machines. It allows them to be booted up and start in their own individual windows. It doesn't allow you a lot of configuration options however so you want to use this player if you're just moving virtual machines from computer to computer and you don't want the overhead of installing the server program. There's also a professional workstation variety that does a lot of things too. Now, you can get VMware for either Windows or Linux and that comes in either package you want. Let's go ahead and look at a demonstration of VMware Server 2 and we'll look at the web interface that VMware Server offers. Now, I already have VMware Server installed and we're going to use VMware Server and Player throughout this course to actually demonstrate a lot of the security tools we're going to use. You can choose to use a digital certificate with VMware server if you like and for a secure environment I probably would recommend that. For a lab environment or closed environment you may not necessarily have to do that. So we're going to get different options here. You're going to get a login prompt for security reasons. You want to enable Login so not just anyone can start your virtual machines up. You're going to get a wide variety of options here. First of all you're going to get a inventory of all the virtual machines that are currently installed and you'll have the ability to start those up and look at them and there's a menu up here, an application that's how to manage the virtual, the VMware Server application itself and you have different options for virtual machines. You can create them or add an existing one to inventory. Maybe you copied off from another computer or CD or whatever or downloaded a free one that are available out there. You can also administer permissions and roles here as well. Now, for the different virtual machine options, you have the ability to start a virtual machine and as you can see, as you change context over here, the context changes as well here. So we have different options here. For the openSUSE virtual machine I have installed I actually have the ability to start the machine and stop it here and I can go ahead and start it. Now, you don't have to necessarily connect to a virtual machine or see it visually once it's started. It can be running in the background and you can access it through a Remote Desktop or some other method as well. We've gone ahead and we've started it up a little bit and if you want to kind of take a look at some of the options you can do with a virtual machine, scroll down a little bit. You can add notes. You can also look and see how the hardware is configured and you can actually change hardware. You build the machine itself when you're installing it and configure how you want it and you can also change hardware dynamically if you like; network devices, hard disks, memory and so forth. So there's a wide variety of things you can do. There's different commands you can use over here as well; power off or suspend the virtual machine, reset it and so forth. You can also take snapshots and snapshots basically save the virtual machine state so you can revert to them later if you do something undesirable or say, let's say you install or configure something you don't want and it's difficult to go back. You can actually revert back to a previous snapshot. There's some information over here that you can use as well; the power state of the machine, what guest OS you're using, hardware versions and so forth. Now, there's also items over here you can look at; tasks and you can look at the different tasks that are going on with the virtual machine and determine whether they're successful or not. For example, this virtual machine has started up and that was a success event. Look at the events and it kind of gives you a play by play of what's going on with the virtual machine. You also can set permissions for the virtual machines for different users as well. The next thing we'll talk about is the console. This is where you actually can start the virtual machine in another window and interact with it. Now, it's actually started up already so we click in this window. We're actually starting another window up that we can interact with the virtual machine within that window and here it goes now. VMware Player looks a lot like this as well. It's a little bit different. So now we have the virtual machine up and running. Now, you can switch between full view and a smaller view simply by hitting Control Alt Enter and as you can see, we've actually went into full view. Now we can choose to get our little toolbar here at the top or we can make that go away if we want. We can log into the virtual machine here and we're essentially interacting with it as we would a real machine. And as far as this openSUSE 11 box is concerned, it's a real machine. It doesn't know that it's not. It has its own hardware, it has its network adapter, it communicates with the network with both the host machine and other virtual machines if I want or with other machines on the real network if I so choose. So for all intents and purposes, it's a real computer and it interacts with its environment as a real computer would, which makes it ideal to run security tools on and to test different things on. That's why security practitioners really like virtual machines because it enables them to do things they can't really do to a production environment to test security configurations and so forth. So we're logged into this virtual machine now and we can do anything we want with it. Now we can also go back to where we were before simply by minimizing the virtual machine if we so choose. That brings us back to our VMware Server console.
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