This week is an important day for Microsoft’s new Hyper-V Extensible Switch in Windows Server 2012. We already know this switch is capable of many new features including capturing, filtering and forwarding extensions from several vendors.
Damian Flynn (fellow author on Microsoft Private Cloud Computing and co-author of Windows Server 2012 Installation and Configuration Guide (appearing very soon!), informed me that major networking player Cisco is about to make a big announcement and that Damian will be co-presenting the announcement with Cisco.
On Wednesday March 6th at 6pm CET, Cisco will unveil its greatly anticipated Distributed Switch solution for Windows Server 2012 and Hyper-V; the Nexus 1000V.
What is the Nexus 1000V?
Cisco Nexus 1000V Series Switches provide a comprehensive and extensible architectural platform for virtual machine (VM) and cloud networking. The switches are designed to accelerate server virtualization and multitenant cloud deployments in a secure and operationally transparent manner. Integrated into the Windows Server 2012 Extensible Switch, and fully compatible with System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 SP1,
Please blog, tweet, and pass on the message, to learn about the Nexus 1000v, and how to join the beta program; grabbing the all-important Beta Code!
For more information, and registration details please follow and share Damian’s link:
Today I received news that EMC has released its latest version of the VNX Operating System which covers NAS and Block functionality (VNX OE 32/8) and Maintenance Release 1 (MR1). If you are an EMC customer, this important release is now available for download:
For Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V customers this is especially very good news because VNX now supports SMB 3.0 and ODX (Offloaded Data Transfer), apart from some VAAI performance enhancements which are of course more interesting for the other guys. ODX is very similar to Block XCOPY in vSphere.
EMC is probably the first vendor offering SMB 3.0 support in its storage array. Several vendors are still working on adding SMB 3.0 and ODX support so this is important news for acceptance of Microsoft storage technology and Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V. NetApp SMB 3.0 support is targeted at ONTAP 8.2.
The software can be downloaded from PowerLink or http://support.emc.com.
Just in time for a new project for a Dutch municipality, involving HP c7000, HP ProLiant BL460c Gen8, HP StoreVirtual 4000 Storage and Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V, HP released a new firmware ISO and a new HP ProLiant Service Pack. With version 2013.02.0 (19 Feb 2013) HP adds Windows Server 2012 support for the following HP ProLiant servers:
- HP ProLiant BL460c G6 Server .
- HP ProLiant DL380 G6 Server
- HP ProLiant DL360 G6 Server
- HP ProLiant ML350 G6 Server
Click on picture for link to PDF.
Additionally a number of new HP ProLiant network adapters are now supported:
HP Ethernet 1Gb 4-port 366FLR Adapter
HP Ethernet 10Gb 2-port 560M Adapter
HP Ethernet 10Gb 2-port 560FLR SFP+ Adapter
HP Ethernet 10Gb 2-port 530T Adapter
Download HP ProLiant Service Pack 2013.02.0
While cleaning up my mailbox, I found a note to myself dating June 2011 about a few feature requests for the next version of Hyper-V and VMM. While talking to customers throughout the year, I often hear about and collect suggestions and product improvements which I can then pass on to the Hyper-V and System Center Product team. In retrospect most items on my list have become a reality in Windows Server 2012 and much, much more!
Online VHD growth and shrink has not yet been realized (although a 64TB dynamic disk supporting unmap pretty much covers all you can desire).
Perhaps the last item on the list is only partly covered by Hyper-V Replica but needs some additional automation or services to make this a complete Recovery solution that could make it even better than RSM. As we know Microsoft is on the right path and a flood of companies are getting really interested in Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V and System Center 2012 SP1.
Thanks Hyper-V and System Center product teams for listening.
During MVP Summit we spent several great days with Hyper-V Product Manager Ben Armstrong aka @VirtualPCGuy. German fellow Virtual Machine MVP Carsten Rachfahl took the opportunity to interview his ‘rockstar’ at CenturyLink Stadium, home of the SeaHawks football team. Very soon you will notice Ben comes from the other side of this planet, at least when you look at it from our angle: ‘Down Under’.
Ben has delivered many excellent presentations on the Hyper-V hypervisor and related subjects at events like TechEd North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand:
He has been working on virtualization software for over 10 years now. The last 9 years have been spent working on virtualization as part of the Windows Core Virtualization team. Ben has been maintaining a blog for the last 8 years as Virtual PC Guy. Chances are that if you have a question about virtualization, Ben will know the answer.
You can find the German Hyper-V blog authored by Carsten Rachfahl here:
In the quiet days between Christmas and New Year, I had some time to research how DPM2012 SP1 performed with protecting guests on a Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V cluster using CSV v2.0.
According to the SP1 release notes we can expect improved backup performance of Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V over CSV deployments with the following benefits:
Let me first point out that my setup is based on the following configuration:
HP ProLiant BL460c Gen8
Windows Server 2012 Datacenter with iSCSI Target Server Role enabled
Dual-port 10Gb HP FlexFabric 554FLB (Emulex) Adapter
Converged Fabric network configuration
Hyper-V Cluster Nodes
HP ProLiant BL460c Gen8
Windows Server 2012 Datacenter with Hyper-V role and Failover Cluster feature enabled
10Gb HP FlexFabric 554FLB (Emulex) Adapter
Converged Fabric network configuration
DPM 2012 SP1 Server
Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V Virtual Machine
Windows Server 2012 Datacenter
1 x 10Gb virtual network adapter (synthetic)
Both on the iSCSI Target Server and Hyper-V cluster nodes, the two 10Gb network adapters have been teamed using a switch independent teaming mode with Hyper-V Port as the load balancing algorithm. A Hyper-V Extensible Switch is connected to the NIC Team and several virtual networks have been configured using the Converged Fabric method of Windows Server 2012. Each network has a minimum bandwidth Quality of Service configured on the virtual switch level. On the backend, the servers use a Virtual Connect Flex-10 interconnect.
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It is only several days since Microsoft made the final bits of System Center 2012 SP1 available, although for a relatively limited audience. If you have a TechNet or MSDN subscription, you have access to SP1 now. All others have to wait till general availability in the course of January 2013.
One of my fellow MVP’s in the Cloud and Datacenter Management department, Graham Davies, raised my interest by claiming there was something in VMM 2012 SP1 that had gone unnoticed: a brand-new SMI-S storage provider for the onboard iSCSI Target Server role in Windows Server 2012! People using the iSCSI Target Server for both demo/test/development and production will get quite excited if they discover how well this software storage solution is integrated, not only in Windows but now also in System Center 2012 SP1.
Back in March 2011, I wrote several blogs about the new Fabric concept in Virtual Machine Manager 2012 which was still in its early beta. One blog focused on deep storage integration using a SNIA standard called Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S). When I was contributing my Fabric chapters for the Microsoft Private Cloud Computing book, there was only a limited number of usually very expensive storage arrays to really dig into this subject. I had access to some HP and NetApp storage to test SMI-S integration which was still very limited at the time. When we saw how the iSCSI Target Server, which was previously a separate install on Windows Server 2008 R2, developed and became included as a role in Windows Server 2012, we begged the product managers responsible for storage in System Center 2012 to also provide SMI-S support. Well guys … here it is!
Fast forwarding about two years, a lot has happened in the storage space and most storage vendors have introduced SMI-S support for their most important storage products. I now consider storage that does not support SMI-S (and some of the other cool technology such as ODX and Unmap/Trim), as a sign that these products are on that vendor’s death list and will soon be obsolete.
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Especially for those who want to manage their Windows Server 2012 servers and clusters, an important moment has come. System Center 2012 SP1 is not only RTM but also ready for download on Technet. Several of our projects were delayed because we needed the SP1 version of Virtual Machine Manager 2012, Data Protection Manager 2012 and several of the other components to manage Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V and Hyper-V Server 2012 cluster. The long wait is over!
Because the new Windows operating system introduced such a shipload of new features, you can imagine what this meant for developing SP1.
It is good to know that some of the ISOs provided contain the full product including SP1 which makes it easier if you want to do a completely fresh install.
Release notes and documentation SCVMM 2012 SP1: http://technet.microsoft.com/library/gg702209.aspx
Installation Guide: http://technet.microsoft.com/library/gg610669.aspx
Release notes and documentation SCOM 2012 SP1: http://technet.microsoft.com/library/hh561709.aspx
Installation Guide: http://technet.microsoft.com/library/hh298609.aspx
READ MORE »
During the last two months hundreds of Hyper-V users have taken the time and effort to participate in The Great Big Hyper-V Survey of 2012 which closed last week. We cannot share any details about the results just yet as we are still counting and analyzing the results. We’ll let you know as soon as we can. Promise!
As a stimulus for you we offered a couple of Microsoft Private Cloud Computing books. Because Aidan Finn said he would select a winner for the book based on the responses he got on his own blog and on Twitter, I still have two books to give away. One is offered by co-author Damian Flynn and the other by me.
It was quite interesting to see how much attention has been raised on the web, on Twitter, on blogs, perhaps also on Facebook (I can’t tell because I got fed up with FB and closed down my account about a year ago). I bang “The Great Big Hyper-V Survey) and got 15,100 results. I googled and found 72,600 results. Of course Google also placed an ad on top, but please rest assured that this survey has no connection with Microsoft whatsoever. They are probably just as curious as you and me for that matter.
All right, now it is time to pick a winner… (please click on More)
As most of our readers know by now is that we are currently asking users of Hyper-V to complete our second edition of The Great Big Hyper-V Survey. Last year we had several hundred people who took part in the survey.
Our original plan was to close the survey after one month, but after some consultation with Aidan Finn and Damian Flynn, we decided to keep the survey open until December 1st.
Meanwhile I had also offered a free copy of our Microsoft Private Cloud Computing book, which is a great resource on several System Center 2012 products and deployment of Hyper-V in a Private Cloud scenario. Because we have kept you waiting for another month, I am pleased to triple the number of books offered as a prize.
Both Aidan Finn and Damian Flynn were so kind to each offer an extra copy so now we have three Microsoft Private Cloud Computing books available.
So here is another opportunity for you to win one of the three books or enter the survey if you have not been able to do this. We are stressing that this survey is read by Microsoft and we are still able to influence what is important for the next release of Hyper-V. Be our guest!
All you need to do is tweet or blog with a reference to this blog: