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Long-wavelength vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) for photonics-on-complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) integration based on a double set of Si/SiO2 photonic crystal mirrors (PCMs) have been recently fabricated. In the present communication, an extensive overview about modal, polarization, and thermal features of optically pumped demonstrators is presented. Capable of operating continuous-wave up to 43°C at low thresholds, such VCSELs show single-mode polarization-stable operation at 1.55-μm with uncooled output powers in excess of 0.4 mW. This paper aims at singling out notably the device optical features arising from the excellent flexibility of the photonic architecture used. Noticeably, the light molding obtained through the engineering of Si/SiO2 photonic crystals allows for a tailored modal selection and full polarization control. Furthermore, the high-throughput cost-effective Si-based process technology developed is ideally well-suited for perspective industrial development.