Microsoft Moves Closer To Hyper-V Rollout

Microsoft Tuesday unveiled the second release candidate for its long awaited Hyper-V hypervisor, which adds minor tweaks like guest operating system support for Windows 2000 Server and mouse integration tools for Novell SUSE 10 Linux.

Hyper-V Release Candidate 1 is now available from the Microsoft Download Center, but only new Windows Server 2008 customers can avail themselves of this option immediately. Customers who've been testing Hyper-V RC0 and beta versions will be able to obtain RC1 from Windows Update starting on May 27, a Microsoft spokesperson said in an email to ChanneWeb.

Hyper-V, which only works on 64-bit platforms, isn't yet compatible with the current beta of System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008, the next generation virtualization management tool Microsoft rolled out last month. Microsoft is advising this set of beta testers to stay with RC0 until its adds RC1 support "at a later date," according to a Tuesday post on the Windows Virtualization Team blog.

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8 Comments

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Such as? I don't see how this is any better than solutions offered by the competition (VMware, Xen, etc). The absence of live migration or non-windows OS support (other than SUSE) make it pretty much useless in a server environment.

(MrA said @ #1.1)
Such as? I don't see how this is any better than solutions offered by the competition (VMware, Xen, etc). The absence of live migration or non-windows OS support (other than SUSE) make it pretty much useless in a server environment.

Hyper-v is way better that vmware and such but at cost of be incompatible (guest size), to required a specific machine, host os and custom drivers.

(Magallanes said @ #1.2)
Hyper-v is way better that vmware and such but at cost of be incompatible (guest size), to required a specific machine, host os and custom drivers.

Better?

Guest on host solutions like VMware have shorter paths between the guest PV driver and the host, since there's only one barrier to transversed. Same for Xen (which is a fat hypervisor, i.e. a whole OS). Hyper-V requires two boundaries to be crossed (Guest -> Hypervisor -> Host and all the way back), incurring a huge performance loss. Not to mention that software virtualization is still faster in most cases than hardware based, and Hyper-V is fully reliant on hardware virtualization. Only the most recent Intel processors come closer to software virtualization.

The thin hypervisor model of Hyper-V just offers slightly more isolation, other than that, it'll be less performant and still subject to all short comings of the other solutions. The Dom0 goes missing, you're screwed.

(MrA said @ #1.1)
Such as? I don't see how this is any better than solutions offered by the competition (VMware, Xen, etc). The absence of live migration or non-windows OS support (other than SUSE) make it pretty much useless in a server environment.

Hyper-V supports live migration, and frankly, Windows shops don't care all that much about Linux support. It's better because it's far cheaper, and easier to manage than the competition. The Linux integration compenents do work with SUSE, so you do ultimately have linux options.

(kl33per said @ #1.4)

Hyper-V supports live migration, and frankly, Windows shops don't care all that much about Linux support. It's better because it's far cheaper, and easier to manage than the competition. The Linux integration compenents do work with SUSE, so you do ultimately have linux options.

Hyper-V 1.0 as it is called internally is still pretty basic and does NOT support live migration a.k.a LiveMotion.
All the features that would make it somewhat equivalent to VMware are slated for v1.2 due next year, however as tom mentionned, it will still NOT be as fast and as efficient as VMWare, for example, things such as the OS Kernel space being shared among all VMs will not be a part of Hyper-V in a short to medium term

(Arkos Reed said @ #1.5)
Hyper-V 1.0 as it is called internally is still pretty basic and does NOT support live migration a.k.a LiveMotion.
All the features that would make it somewhat equivalent to VMware are slated for v1.2 due next year, however as tom mentionned, it will still NOT be as fast and as efficient as VMWare, for example, things such as the OS Kernel space being shared among all VMs will not be a part of Hyper-V in a short to medium term

Ok, I'm getting my terms confused. Hyper-V supports Quick Migration through Windows Failover Clustering, not Live Migration (which VMWare brands as VMotion). In my experience, admins still wait until after hours to perform maintenance on VM servers, which, aside from load balancing, is the only practical use for Live Migration. In the situation where a VM server falls over, Live Migration won't save you. Obviously, Live Migration has some benefit (mainly load balancing over a large group of VM's running on multiple servers), but for a 1.0 product (which is still effectively in beta), I'd argue it's not a critical feature with the included Quick Migration already in place. Furthermore, Failover Clustering is pretty damn simple to setup in a server 2008 environment.

Clearly the pricing structure, maturity of the product (which isn't even done yet), it's built-into-the-OS nature and the simple management tools make Hyper-V squarely aimed at small-to-medium size businesses that have not yet entered the visualization market. A good friend of mine has already moved a company he works for onto Hyper-V, because it's cost effective (the company never could have afforded VMWare). Clearly VMWare (for the moment) have better tech, but that's not the only factor to consider.

As for performance, show me some numbers.