Microsoft IAG is today (prior SP2) only available as a Hardware machine (Appliance).
In the list of new features introduced by IAG Service Pack 2 we have the support of Windows2008 HyperV. November 2008, a customer will have the choice between a hardware appliance (Pyramid, Celestix, ..) and or a Virtual Machine (VM).
This means that you can use any kind of 64 bits hardware (make sure this is compatible with the HCL), install win 2008 (Core or win GUI), add hyperV role... and then you just have to buy and download a VM from Microsoft and execute it. It is pre-installed, pre-hardened and ready to plug and activate.
This new approach generates a lot of questions.. do you think so ?
As one of the IAG specialists at Microsoft, I am part of the IAG Service Pack 2 TAP (Technical Adoption Program) and have personally have to face these questions : How to install Win2008/hyperV ? Which version, core or GUI ? what are the security questions around this new approach ? How to harden the win2008/HyperV stack and how to keep it secured.. Etc..
I will try in my blog to share with you my research and tests in this area.
Step1 will be for me to investigate the Win2008/HyperV configuration, and I will primarily focus on Win2008 Enterprise CORE version.
To be continued...