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New to Windows Server 2008 R2? What’s New In Hyper-V?

on Saturday, 25 July 2009. Posted in Microsoft

The virtualisation team at MS has done a blog post. What’s new?

  • Support for 64 Cores with up to 384 running VM’s and/or 512 virtual processors.
  • Support for AMD RVI and Intel EPT. That emerges in the form of SLAT which I blogged about recently. Basically, we get offloading to the hardware for the mapping between physical RAM and virtual RAM.
  • On the networking side we get jumbo frame support.
  • 10GB networking
  • Chimney support is added.
  • VMQ (virtual machine queue) offloads processing of network traffic from the parent partition to the network card processor.
  • Storage: Cluster Shared Volume, i.e. many hosts in a cluster sharing a single volume for storing many VM’s.
  • Dynamically expanding VHD’s now reach 87% of the performance of the underlying physical disk. Fixed size is at 94% as before and is still the recommended solution where you want VHD features and performance.
  • You can hot add/remove virtual machine storage.
  • New IC’s are on the way (currently RC2) to offer complete support from MS for “SLES 10 and 11 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 5.2 and 5.3 for both x86 and x64”.
  • Core Parking reduces power utilisation by powering down unused physical cores in the host server.
  • Drum roll please: Live Migration is here. You can move a VM from host A to host B with no noticeable downtime .. it’s just a few milliseconds, less than any network protocol will notice.
  • Processor compatibility mode allows VM’s to migrate between hosts with physical processors of different generations. You’re still bounded to either all AMD or all Intel. That’s done by tuning back functionality.
  • With other W2008 R2 functionality you get a all MS VDI solution.
  • A new version of Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 with CSV and Live Migration support.
  • If you do want to go Core Installation then there’s the SCONFIG tool to rapidly configure the host.

Coming soon?

  • Microsoft released 20,000 lines of GPLv2 licensed code to update the kernel of Linux distributions. If all goes well, all future Linux distros will be Hyper-V enlightened out of the box.
  • There is a new version of VMM 2008 R2 coming. It will offer support for all of the new Hyper-V features. It also brings in Quick Storage Migration to quickly move VM's from one location to another with minimum downtime, e.g. move a VM from a per-LUN installation to CSV with 1 minute downtime VS 1 hour. There's also a new maintenance mode for hosts and some cool SAN integration.

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