Looks like I've upset a few people. Sorry, that wasn't my intention.
I get to talk to a lot of people about a lot of stuff. Virtualisation is one of them, and all I ever hear is VMware this and VMware that (and next to no one knows what Microsoft currently offer - or have coming down the line).
I've posted a comment myself on last Friday's post, but thought it worthwhile posting this too:
So, in my defense (in an attempt to respond to all your comments):
Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 (shipping product), can:
As far as Windows Server Virtualisation (WSV) go, I'm not going to mention it (other than to say that it's now available as a Customer Technology Preview in the current builds of Windows Server 2008 (RC0), so you can start playing with it now)..
Hopefully this post is "FUD free"..
Killer feature it is still missing; does not support x64 guests.
I for one can’t wait for WSV to be baked into Windows. I’ve been using WMware server products as a developer for years and it remains terribly painful. WSV is looking to be soooo much better both for users and developers.
WSV gives us 4-way, 64GB, 64-bit (and 32-bit on the same server) guests.
Personal opinion - most existing servers are 32-bit, so 64-bit guests isn't such a killer feature. If you want a server to scream along - don't virtualise it..
No matter which provider is giving us a solution, virtualisation is promising to bring us many benefits in our computer rooms as we can consolidate systems etc. But like every other new technology or phase we go through in IT, information security is often left as an afterthought.
For an interesting insight into information security and virtualisation I recommend looking at the following presentation http://www.packetfilter.com/ISSA-Virtualization.pdf.
It is from Chris Hoff, ex Chief Security Strategist for Crossbeam ( a player in the VM world). Chris' talk is called "Virtualization & the End Of Network Security As We Know It." and was presented at the April 2007 meeting of the Charlotte ISSA chapter.
It provides a good overview of virtualisation and also some excellent points on how to secure it. Note that it is in PDF format and approx 11MB in size.