Last week I wrote about the fun and games I was having trying to get a demo of VMM together (http://blogs.technet.com/daven/archive/2006/09/28/459702.aspx) - yesterday I got it working (and it is very good).
System Center Virtual Machine Manager (beta 1) must be installed on a member server running the 32-bit version of Windows Server 2003 R2. To get it running on a laptop, you therefore also need a domain controller. You're going to have Virtual Server installed on the laptop anyway (why else would you be installing Virtual Machine Manager?). Here's what I ended up with:
Laptop is installed with Windows Server 2003 R2 (doesn't have to be R2) with the Application Server role. I've installed the MS Loopback adapter (control panel, add/remove hardware). I've installed DNS and disabled all the network adapters except the loopback. Static IP address on the loopback and pointing to itself for DNS. DCPROMO and create a new domain. Install Virtual Server 2005 R2.
Create a virtual machine connected to the loopback connector and allocate 1Gb of memory. Install Windows Server 2003 R2 and add the Application Server role. RTFM and install Virtual Machine Manager.
To get VMM to manage your host Virtual Server, you first have to install Web Services Management (in the pre-requisites folder of the VMM installation). Then you simply add a new host in VMM - this will install the agent and everything will work fine.
Any virtual machines with undo-disks will come in as 'unsupported' and you won't be able to use VMM to manage them (this appears to be a beta 1 'feature').
Looks like I need a new laptop after all this though (if I'm ever to demo this well) - the guest machine running VMM is using 1Gb of memory & the host is using another half, which means I haven't got much headroom to run anything else. You can get dual core, 64-bit laptops with 4Gb memory and two internal hard drives - anyone want to "lend" me one?
Jeez ... you really DO know everything Dave :-)