I could say its faster, which it is. But isn't that always the case with each new release and update of it as overall performance usually degrades over time for some unknown reason. But then again version 8 since its release has stayed consistently fast whilst running my VM's for the main part thus far whether I'd been using the workstation or the player build. The workstation build can potentially perform much better then the player build on certain hardware configurations due to additional settings and features included that allow you manage local host system memory assignments and swapping.

However despite the relatively consistent smoother and faster performance of VM's running in version 8, the usual patterns of slower load times of the actual applications and VM's before actual booting started to occur. That is to say I'd start the VMware app or VM and I'd have to do something else whilst it took around 30 seconds to a minute for it to actually start up. This did in fact happen several times with version 7 but was fixed with various updates for 7 during its use. Based on how things went there maybe its only a question of time before actual VM performance starts to get a little choppy in 8 too. 

Having said that I can't help but think that much of the performance slowdown might not actually have much to do with VMware directly but more to do with the all the antics that go on behind the scenes away from the eyes of the unaware public. 

Apart from that VMware 8 is much better then 7 since it was pretty much evident that my VM's were running much more smoothly and a little faster. They've also put in plain sight the features that allow you to port a host machine instance of an OS to a virtual machine for all those that didn't know it could be done. However you'll find its possible to do this in version 7 too if you dig around a little. The VMware vCenter converter application that it installs and launches can also be downloaded and used completely free as a seperate stand alone application direct from the VMware site. However I've not actually tested vCenter converter as stand alone application first hand. What I mean by this is that I've only used vCenter converter in its its most current iteration as part of the VMware workstation 8 package. What I found was that after installing vCenter converter via workstation 8 it wasn't possible to use use it without having VMware workstation 8 installed. Removing the VMware workstation 8 app seemed to cause issues with local user rights access to local storage devices when using vCenter converter i.e. it wasn't possible to write to any of the local system devices for the conversion process if I removed VMware workstation 8 before hand. It was only possible to access local storage media in vCenter for writing to if VMware workstation 8 was still installed prior to using vCenter convertor.

As ever VMware workstation 8 (Or VMware fusion as it called on the Mac) is available to download for free and try out for a limited period direct from the VMware site. Just click the picture above to get there.