Monday, September 8, 2008

Microsoft Shakes Up the Virtualization World Yet Again

Today was a big day full of announcements for Microsoft, as most of these announcements have been covered in detail by other bloggers, I am going to link to their stories and give my own analysis and commentary instead of asking everyone to read the same press releases.

First up - Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 

One thing I have heard consistently when discussing Hyper-V is that "You still have to buy an operating system license.  So ESX3i and XenServer Express are still cheaper. "

Pretty soon that will not be true anymore,  as Microsoft announced that not only will their new bare metal, designed from the ground up hypervisor be released with 30 days,  it will be free, which happens to be my favorite price. has an excellent article on the Virtual Server 2008 announcement today. Release : Microsoft Hyper-V 1.0

Next up : System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008

This will be released within 30 days.   One thing I found surprising about this announcement is that they will support management of VMware VI3, they will not be supporting XenServer.  I would not have expected this, considering how close Citrix and Microsoft are these days.

Lastly on the server virtualization side was Live Migration. 

Microsoft seems to have realized that the lack of Live Migration was holding them back from competing directly with VMware, especially when it comes to Enterprise class environments.  the good news is that it will be released with Windows 2008 R2.  The bad will likely not be in our hands until 2010.  

I think this is a great announcement for all the consumers of virtualization technology,  as VMware, Microsoft, and Citrix will all be pushing to achieve the be the leader in the virtualization market of the future.   To use a boxing metaphor, VMware is still the undisputed champion today, but they will need to fight hard to stay there. 

Read's scoop on the subject : FYI: Microsoft’s live migration

There were many other announcements including :

Definitely a big day for press releases.


Anonymous said...


I'd like to know more about this hearsay...

How much does VMWare ESX3i? + the license OS per guest?

How much is the free guest OS on Windows 2008 Enterprise? 4? Windows 2008 Datacenter Edition? Unlimited

Please quantify because it's frustrating to have opinions.. inaccurate.. let's dispell myths.. and give facts instead.

One thing I have heard consistently when discussing Hyper-V is that "You still have to buy an operating system license. So ESX3i and XenServer Express are still cheaper. "

-Virtualization Curios-

Jason Willey said...

Just to be clear, the part in quotes was anecdotal arguments that I have seen on message boards, and actually experienced in conversations with people, it's not my opinion, but as you say a popular unsourced myth.

So prior to Hyper-V Server you still needed to buy some copy of windows to "host" the parent partition of the Microsoft hypervisor. Hyper-V server removes that requirement. So I was referring to the Host OS costs, not the Guest OS costs. ESX3i and Xenserver Express, like Hyper-V server are pure hypervisors which don't require an underlying OS.

I hope that answers your question, if not, feel free to leave a further comment and I will try to address your question.