It is not fair to compare Xen to VMware, the two have different objectives; Xen is better compared to IBM's VM that is available on it's big iron.
As with Xen an OS needs to know that it is running on top of VM, the purpose is to allow multiple guest OS images to run concurrently and have them not interfere with each other and to dynamically load balance between the separate OS images. IE the aim is control over resources and prevention of disasters/upgrade_issues/... in one guest from interfering with another guest.
VMware is for running an unmodified guest operating system, you will use it because of the reasons that you run Xen/VM, but also because it is the only way of running a precious application that only runs under some version of an OS.
VMware needs to do more work to maintain the illusion to the guest of it running natively on the hardware; this illusion is not part of the Xen/VM aim - where management/resource_control is top of the list.
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