Hope everyone enjoyed their March, and depending on your geographic location, if you had snow, hopefully it’s gone now and you can start to enjoy spring! Regardless, it’s time for our March edition of Hot Hyper-V Topics! We’ve had some good stuff in March, including a number of developments announced at the Microsoft Build conference that took place at the end of the month. Read on if you’re interested and we hope you enjoy!
For those that aren’t aware, Nano Server is a new Windows Server installation option that provides just the needed components for our new cloud based world. This includes Hyper-V! However, one of the challenges that has been found with Nano Server is that management can become difficult if you’re not used to it. In this post, Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter Management MVP Thomas Maurer shows us how to manage Nano Server using PowerShell remotely. This is a good crash-course if you’re looking to learn more about Nano Server!
In the new era of “Microsoft <3’s Linux”, it should come as no surprise that Microsoft has continued to enhance their offerings as far as Linux workloads on Hyper-V is concerned. A virtual machine running on Hyper-V is quite lacking, however, if the integration tools are missing or not present. With that said, Microsoft has recently released the new 4.1 version of LIS (Linux Integration Services). According to the above article this release adds support for releases of RHEL, CentOS, and Oracle Linux running Red Hat kernels 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, and 7.2. Additionally some new features have been added, such as Hyper-V Sockets, Manual Memory Hot-Add, and Uninstallation scripts. If you’re interested in all the details, read on!
Our good friend and Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter Management MVP Didier Van Hoye has a guest post out on the StarWind Software Blog about Processor Affinity in Hyper-V. This topic seems to come up quite frequently, especially when working with software vendors in the big data, healthcare, and finance industries. Processor affinity in Hyper-V is generally referring to a virtual machine’s access to the CPU resources of the underlying Hyper-V host. Many vendors will claim that a virtual machine running their software needs to have a dedicated CPU cores allocated to the virtual machine. Doing this creates all kinds of concerns and issues. Didier does an excellent job of covering this topic and whether it is really warranted or not. It’s a good read for sure, and well worth your time.
Speaking of Didier, he and the Hyper-V Amigos have a new episode of their showcast available. In this episode Carsten Rachfahl (Also a Microsoft MVP) and Didier discuss some of the Clustering improvements coming in Windows Server 2016, including the much-discussed Azure Cloud Witness. It’s nearly an hour long, but it’s an hour well spent if you’re interested in Failover Clustering and Hyper-V.
When I put these lists together, I try to shy away from listing our own stuff from our various outlets, but we’ve got two items on the list this month because I find them to be extremely valuable. This first one is a post I put together in early March. The goal of this article was to get the viewpoints of several Hyper-V MVPs on what their favorite upcoming features are in Windows Server 2016. We had 12 different responses, which was a great turnout. It’s a great read in the sense that it gives you an idea of what some of the most used, new features are going to be and why they are important. If you want to see what Hyper-V experts in the industry are excited about in 2016, this is the article for you.
This is the second of two Altaro articles on this month’s list. A while back we approached Paul Schnackenburg about authoring this eBook for us, and he certainly delivered. This eBook serves as an excellent guide on how to get the most performance out of your Hyper-V deployment as possible. He covers this topic from several different angles such as, how to identify and resolve issues with storage, CPU, memory and networking components. Additionally he covers things like Windows Performance Monitor and how to plan out your environments for maximum performance. It really is a great read and you should find it to be quite valuable. Click the above link for the download.
While this isn’t Hyper-V news specifically, it certainly makes for an interesting read and allows us to speculate a little bit about what the Microsoft ecosystem is going to look like in the future. To be honest, most people who see this headline for the first time, likely believe that hell has frozen over. Personally, I never thought I would see the day when Bash would be brought to Windows. From a Hyper-V perspective I think this says a lot about the new Microsoft, and their commitment to supporting Linux workloads with their product set. If you’ve been putting off learning how to support Linux VMs on your Hyper-V hosts because your waiting for the other shoe to fall, Its time to start leaning. It’s very apparent that Microsoft is in it for the long haul with their new open source strategy.
Again, while not Hyper-V specific, I always like to link to training resources. Every administrator should be well-rounded, and sometimes that means learning about things that we don’t normally work with. As a Hyper-V administrator sometimes it’s helpful to understand how the workloads we host in VMs are built and how they function. It can be quite helpful int he troubleshooting process. This link provides a really cool PowerShell script on how to grab all of the Build 2016 sessions for later viewing. Learning a little bit of this material will not only help you as an administrator, it will help you see a little bit more of Microsoft’s vision for the future.
We hope you enjoyed this month’s Hyper-V Hot Topics! We certainly had a diverse set of links this month and it should make for some good reading/viewing. Also, if you found a hot topic or a juicy link that you don’t see on the list above, be sure to share it with us using the comments section below.
Until next time!