When setting up a physical server, administrators often perform network based installations. The virtual machine network adapter in VS2005 R2 now supports Pre-boot Execution Environment (PXE) boot. This lets you perform network-based installations of guest operating systems as you if you were setting up a physical server.
Virtual Server R2 includes a SCSI Shunt Driver.vfd (virtual floppy disk) for loading the SCSI emulated drivers during the installation of the guest operating system. Using the virtual floppy disk can speed up the installation process when the VHD is attached to an emulated SCSI adapter.
Note: During the installation of the guest operating system, press F6 when prompted. You will need to capture the SCSI Shunt Drive.vfd. For more information, see the Virtual Server 2005 Administrator’s guide.
To provide high-availability and fault tolerance for mission critical servers, applications and services, businesses often implement clustering solutions. Clustering provides high availability by automatically detecting when an application or service fails. Downtime can be as little as a few seconds and can go completely unnoticed by users.
Virtual Server 2005 R2 supports clustering of guest operating systems and host computers. Clustering host computers offers a cost-effective means of increasing server availability, enabling migration and failover of virtual machines among the Virtual Server hosts in the cluster. Using Windows Server 2003, Microsoft Cluster Service and Virtual Server 2005 R2, businesses can create a cost-effective, high availability solution for virtual machines.
VS2005 R2 now makes it even more cost-effective for businesses that want to implement guest clustering. The availability of iSCSI in R2 eliminates the need to purchase the specialized hardware typically required in a cluster solution. The only additional hardware required is network adapters to connect to the storage device to the cluster nodes.
Virtual Server 2005 R2 offers three different clustering scenarios:
- Virtual Machine Guest Clustering(iSCSI) – Virtual Machines are clustered on different hosts.
- Virtual Machine Guest Clustering (Shared SCSI) – Virtual Machines are clustered on the same host.
- Virtual Server Host Clustering – Virtual Servers are clustered on different hosts.
With Virtual Machine Guest Clustering, each Virtual Machine (VM) is a cluster node. Cluster-aware applications that are running inside a guest are considered resource groups. If an application within a resource group fails or if the guest fails, the VM containing the failure will automatically failover to another VM on the same host or on a different host. This protects against application failure.
Virtual Server Host Clustering, on the other hand, protects against host failure. If a VS2005 R2 host fails, the virtual machines running on the failed host can be automatically migrated to another host in the cluster.
[tags]virtual server 2005, Windows, XP,virtualization[/tags]