Your basic ITPro blog... What's going on at work, what I'm interested in.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Upgrading our Virtualization Infrastructure, and Other Updates…

We are going to be adding a second Hyper-V virtualization host soon. We currently have four VM hosts, three running Virtual Server and one running Hyper-V. Our goal, as you can probably imagine, is to get off of Virtual Server completely. This second Hyper-V host will just about get us there. We will be able to put our most critical VMs on Hyper-V and keep our ‘lesser’ VMs on Virtual Server. This is critical for us, as the performance and stability gains are impressive. As one example, our main file server (a VM) was, until recently, hosted on Virtual Server. It would literally take from 1-3 hours to reboot on that VM hosting platform. After moving this VM to Hyper-V, it now takes 1-3 minutes to reboot. Also, backups have increased in speed by almost 50%, greatly reducing our backup window, and expected recovery window. So, our data is getting safer faster and can be retrieved faster. All very good things!

I have also been spending some time looking at more depth in to Server 2008. We aren’t ready to upgrade our Domain yet, but the File Services role for Windows Server 2008 has some impressive new features. And, since we are nearing file server capacity and need to expand, this might be a good time to upgrade. But, just doing the research as of now.

In either case, the march towards Windows Server 2008 is under way. We’ve got quite a way to go, but we are moving in that direction.

Finally, we are expanding our server room on our Mesa campus. This will help us consolidate our server resources to a single location, as well as give us some breathing room in our racks. As part of the expansion, we have added a few more power circuits, which were sorely needed. Overall, this will be a big win for us as we look to grow/update our systems.

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