zenon on Virtual Machine systems
Virtual Machine (VM) systems are more and more replacing systems based on
hardware only as with this several advantages can be used, e.g. run several VMs
at once, transfer VMs to other hardware, create snapshots and restore them, etc.
In general zenon can be used on VM systems. It is tested and has been released
for all current Microsoft operating systems. Operating systems running in virtual
environments occupy a special position. They must meet certain requirements and
they can reduce the field of application of zenon due to restrictions determined by
As an application zenon cannot determine whether it runs in a virtual environment
or on an operating system which runs directly on a hardware. Therefore zenon
must rely on the reliability of the transparent VM system. How flawless zenon
works on a VM system depends on how exact the VM system itself works. COPA-
DATA recommends testing zenon extensively on the VM system before using it in
a productive environment. Especially all hardware accesses such as graphic
output, serial and Ethernet interfaces, access to USB ports, etc. should be tested
thoroughly. If possible an additional guarantee from the manufacturer of the virtual
environment should be taken in that the virtualized operating system behaves and
works exactly as the original operating system.:
When using zenon on a Virtual Machine, the lack of hardware support can be the
biggest obstacle. Based on experience we can say that the access via an Ethernet
interface works without any problems. More often the access via USB or serial or
parallel ports causes problems. Most of the time accessing PCI cards in the host
computer is not possible at all. Due to this restricted hardware support, it is
possible that for example drivers cannot communicate with connected controls or
that zenon cannot reach the dongle. As workaround a network dongle can be used.
COPA-DATA tests zenon during its quality assurance on three server operating
systems and three desktop operating systems including respective service packs in
up to eight different languages. To carry out these tests for all VM systems in the
bear no reasonable relation to the use for the zenon user.
Naturally COPA-DATA also tests zenon in virtual environments from different
manufacturers. These tests however are carried out outside the standardized
quality assurance measures and cannot be reproduced.
Support and warranty
zenon is suitable for the use on VM systems. Due to the restrictions and the sheer
number of VM systems on the market, COPA-DATA cannot take over specific
support or assume liability for the use of zenon on VM systems.