What's New in Beta 2

 

What’s new in Virtual Machine Manager Beta 2?

The What's New section of the Virtual Machine Manager documentation provides an overview of the new and significantly enhanced features in Virtual Machine Manager.

Note: This section documents features that are available in the Beta 2 release of Virtual Machine Manager. New or significantly changed features available in subsequent releases of the product, such as the Release Candidate, will be described in the respective documentation.

 

Console Enhancements in Virtual Machine Manager

· The console has been divided into different areas for managing hosts, virtual machines, library servers, and jobs, exposing only the actions required for the task at hand. Current users of Operations Manager 2007 will be immediately familiar with the new interface.

· Improved searching, filtering, and grouping make finding items much easier. Modify the columns that are displayed to keep track of the information that is most important to you. Each view is now enhanced to make working with Virtual Machine Manager more efficient.

· Overview pages provide easy to understand summaries with quick access to the most commonly used actions and links to help topics about key concepts and processes.

· Auditing of all changes made to hosts, virtual machines, and other resources within Virtual Machine Manager make it easier to track down the root cause of problems that may occur.

· Integrated reporting functionality when used in environments with System Center Operations Manager 2007. Users can view reports on host utilization, virtual machines, and consolidation guidance from with the Administrator Console.

· All actions performed in the Administrator Console are completely scriptable by using Windows PowerShell cmdlets. Wizards now include View Script functionality that outputs the Windows PowerShell script equivalent of the actions that will be performed by the wizard. Cut and paste the scripts directly into Windows PowerShell or use them as the foundation for automating more complex tasks within Virtual Machine Manager.

 

Command Shell Feature of Virtual Machine Manager

· Based on the Windows PowerShell technology, this command-line environment provides administrators with a set of composable and extensible commands for automating Virtual Machine Manager administration without using the Virtual Machine Manager user interface.

· View all Virtual Machine Manager cmdlets and their syntax by using Get-Command –PSSnapin Virtual MachineManagerSnapIn | format-list

· In-depth help has been added for all of the Virtual Machine Manager cmdlets including over 275 examples demonstrating their use. Use the Get-Help cmdlet to display help for each Virtual Machine Manager cmdlet.

 

Virtual Machine and Template Creation Functionality in Virtual Machine Manager

· Virtual machines can be created by using blank virtual hard disks that are generated at any time, so blank virtual hard disks no longer need to be stored in the library. Virtual hard disks may also be renamed after they are deployed, thus making it easier to track which virtual machine the virtual hard disks belong to.

· Create templates automatically from virtual machines with the improved New Template Wizard. Simply configure the virtual machine as desired, install Virtual Server Additions and then use the wizard to convert the virtual machine into a template. Virtual Machine Manager will automatically run Sysprep within the virtual machine to remove the identity information and store the resulting template in the library.

· Library servers are automatically indexed and import virtual hard disks, virtual floppy disks, ISOs, and scripts into Virtual Machine Manager eliminating the need to add them manually. These components can then be used to create new virtual machines and templates.

 

Migration Enhancements in Virtual Machine Manager

· Perform fast virtual machine migrations using fibre channel or iSCSI based shared storage. Migrate virtual machines in under a minute regardless of the size of the virtual hard disks.

· New SAN migration checks during virtual machine placement indicate which hosts are available for fast migrations using shared storage.

· Saved state migrations allow virtual machines to be migrated without requiring the virtual machine to be turned off. While the virtual machine will be offline during the migration process, saved state migrations eliminate the need to perform a full shutdown and restart cycle.

 

Physical to Virtual (P2V) and Virtual to Virtual (V2V) Conversions with Virtual Machine Manager

· Easily convert Microsoft Windows 2000 Server SP4, Microsoft Windows Server 2003 SP1+, and Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2 physical servers to virtual machines using a simple wizard within the Virtual Machine Manager Administrator Console. The conversion process of Windows Server 2003 SP1+ and Windows Server 2003 R2 requires no server down time.

· PowerShell command line support for converting VMware virtual machines to Virtual Server virtual machines.

 

Improved Self-Service Experience in Virtual Machine Manager

· Create self-service policies quickly and easily by using the new Self-Service Policy Wizard.

· Share virtual machines between users through group ownership. Shared virtual machines can be viewed and controlled by any member of the group, subject to the permissions that are assigned in the policy.

· Self-service users can store virtual machines to a specified location in the library to save them for later use. Self-service users may also create and manage checkpoints on the virtual machines that they own.

· The virtual machine quotas feature allows administrators to limit the number and type of virtual machines that end users can create.

 

Increased Installation Flexibility in Virtual Machine Manager

· The Virtual Machine Manager server, library servers, and the self-service portal can be installed independently on separate servers. Additionally, the Administrator Console and Windows PowerShell interface can be used remotely and can be installed on a different server or desktop computer. All roles include support for both 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems.

· Utilize existing Microsoft SQL Server 2005 database installations including clustered SQL Server databases to increase scale and improve reliability.

· Hosts located in a perimeter network (also known as DMZ, demilitarized zone, and screened subnet) are now supported. Securely manage hosts and virtual machines that are located outside of a trusted domain.

· Configurable ports for both communication and data transfer channels to improve security and adhere to existing infrastructure guidelines.

Enjoy ! :)