Micro-virtualization is technology that abstracts applications and sub-processes from hardware and runs them in isolated environments.

Micro-virtualization relies on proprietary software called a Microvisor (micro-hypervisor), which desktop security startup Bromium developed. The technology launched in 2012 as part of Bromium’s vSentry product. Whenever a computer user launches a task, such as visiting a Web page or opening a document, the Microvisor creates a virtual machine sandbox that isolates the process and limits its interaction with the operating system and hardware. If the process contains malicious code, the micro-virtualization software can shut it down, using Intel VT hardware-assisted virtualization technology, without affecting the rest of the machine. 

The main use case of micro-virtualization is to protect computing devices against the execution of malicious code, but it can also be used to protect applications and data running on untrusted machines.

This was last updated in January 2013

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