Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 review

Microsoft is determined to keep the pressure on the established virtualisation players and with Hyper-V R2 has added some crucial features. We see how it fares in this review.

The R2 release of Hyper-V removes some of the limitations of the earlier release and introduces several important features. The biggest is host clustering and live migration. You can set up a cluster of up to 16 nodes, and have automatic failover of a VM (Virtual Machine) from one node to another in the event of a hardware failure. Another key feature is that virtual SCSI hard drives can now be added and removed without shutting down the VM.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Hyper-V supports two types of virtual hard drive. A dynamically expanding hard drive reports a large capacity to the guest operating system, but only occupies the space on the host that is actually used, whereas a fixed virtual drive occupies the same space as its capacity. Dynamic drives are more convenient, but in the first Hyper-V release performed more slowly than fixed drives. This has changed in R2 so that performance is nearly the same.

hyper-v manager

The Hyper-V Manager snap-in running remotely is the normal way to manage virtual machines.

We installed Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 on several machines, ranging from a server with two quad-core processors to a low-end server with a single Xeon. Installation of Server Core tends to be a little more complex than the full version of Windows Server, partly because it is a minority choice and most support resources presume that you have access to the full GUI. Simple tasks like checking device manager become challenging. Microsoft has provided a command-line menu with scripts for some common tasks, such as joining the computer to a domain, configuring remote management - though see below - and setting up networking; but unless you already know Server Core you will still need to work out new techniques for familiar tasks.

Featured Resources

Staying ahead of the game in the world of data

Create successful marketing campaigns by understanding your customers better

Download now

Remote working 2020: Advantages and challenges

Discover how to overcome remote working challenges

Download now

Keep your data available with snapshot technology

Synology’s solution to your data protection problem

Download now

After the lockdown - reinventing the way your business works

Your guide to ensuring business continuity, no matter the crisis

Download now

Most Popular

How do you build a great customer experience?
Sponsored

How do you build a great customer experience?

20 Jul 2020
Labour Party donors caught up in Blackbaud data breach
data breaches

Labour Party donors caught up in Blackbaud data breach

31 Jul 2020
Why it’s time to expand beyond 16:9 monitors
Advertisement Feature

Why it’s time to expand beyond 16:9 monitors

21 Jul 2020