- VMs take minutes to start, whereas containers take seconds to start.
- VMs do not include a guest OS, whereas containers do.
- VMs require a type 1 hypervisor directly on the system hardware, whereas containers require a type 2 hypervisor.
- VMs share the same operating system, whereas each container requires a dedicated operating system.
Explanation: Each VM on a server has an dedicated OS and all containers on a server share the host OS while remaining isolated from each other. A VM contains a guest OS. Containers do not contain one, so they are lightweight (small in size). When a VM starts, the guest OS needs to load first, and once it is operational, the application in the VM can then start and run. This whole process may take minutes. When a container starts, it leverages the kernel of the host OS, which is already running, and it typically takes a few seconds to start.
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