I need to do OS testing for software that interacts with Optical Mark Reader (aka Scantron Machines) and image scanner that connect to the system via USB. Currently we are using a number of systems where we will install a given OS and then create a backup image of the OS via Symantec's Backup Exec Desktop edition. This is fine but time consuming to re-image the systems constantly when switching between OS or when we need a clean OS. To speed things up I have configured a few of the machines to have multiple partition with each partition containing a different OS. Then I use BCDedit to allow me to boot to the different OS. This is working OK but does create for some slight hiccups during re-imagine. Is there a better way of doing this? How do other organizations handle this sort of issue? Thank you for your time and help.
We have tried VMWare and found issues with connecting the necessary peripherals to the system. Has this improved with the latest version? Also we had resource issues creating as many snapshots as we would have liked.
In terms of support patching through plugged in peripherals from the host machine to the VM, VMWare is probably by far one of the best out there I've seen. I don't think you'll have any better luck with Oracle Virtual box or Citrix Xenserver.