Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 enables you to create a virtualized server computing environment. You can use a virtualized computing environment to improve the efficiency of your computing resources by utilizing more of your hardware resources. This is possible because you use Hyper-V to create and manage virtual machines and their resources. Each virtual machine is a virtualized computer system that operates in an isolated execution environment. This allows you to run multiple operating systems simultaneously on one physical computer.
Hyper-V provides software infrastructure and basic management tools that you can use to create and manage a virtualized server computing environment. This virtualized environment can be used to address a variety of business goals aimed at improving efficiency and reducing costs. For example, a virtualized server environment can help you:
- Reduce the costs of operating and maintaining physical servers by increasing your hardware utilization. You can reduce the amount of hardware needed to run your server workloads.
- Increase development and test efficiency by reducing the amount of time it takes to set up hardware and software and reproduce test environments.
- Improve server availability without using as many physical computers as you would need in a failover configuration that uses only physical computers.
Hyper-V can be useful to you if you are:
- An IT administrator, planner, or designer.
- An IT architect responsible for computer management and security throughout your organization.
- An IT operations manager who is looking for ways to reduce the total cost of ownership of their server infrastructure, in terms of both power costs and management costs.
- A software developer or tester who is looking for ways to increase productivity by reducing the time it takes to build and configure a server for development or test use.
The key features of Hyper-V are as follows:
- 64-bit native hypervisor-based virtualization.
- Ability to run 32-bit and 64-bit virtual machines concurrently.
- Uniprocessor and multiprocessor virtual machines.
- Virtual machine snapshots, which capture the state, data, and hardware configuration of a running virtual machine. Because snapshots record system states, you can revert the virtual machine to a previous state.
- Large virtual machine memory support.
- Virtual local area network (VLAN) support.
- Microsoft Management Console (MMC) management snap-in.
- Documented Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) interfaces for scripting and management.
Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 R2 adds the following features:
- Live migration
- Dynamic virtual machine storage
- Enhanced processor support
- Enhanced networking support