At the Microsoft Management Summit and TechEd this year we announced  System Center Essentials 2010, the next version of Essentials. We also started to talk about the new features, in particular how we’ve placed virtualization capabilities in Essentials, providing a single location for monitoring and managing virtual computers.

You don’t need to wait for Essentials 2010 though to get started with virtualization management in Essentials.

Essentials 2007 supports virtualization in the following ways:

  • Essentials server can run on a virtualized operating system, i.e. you don’t need a physical server for Essentials.
  • Managed computers can be virtual. The Essentials agent will monitor and manage your virtual computers the same as your physical computers.

If you have System Center Virtual Machine Manager (including Workgroup Edition) you can go one step further and not only monitor virtual computers, but also create and control (start/stop etc) virtual computers.

Instructions for configuring Essentials and VMM are now available on TechNet to help you get started.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd759392.aspx 

If you’ve previously followed Pete Zerger’s instructions for configuring Essentials and VMM you’ll be pleased to know that there are updated MPs available that include reports for Virtualization.

With Essentials 2007 and VMM you will use 2 consoles, but when Essentials 2010 is released you will have a single console for monitoring and managing both your virtual and physical computers.