In today’s article I will show you how to install and configure Hyper-V Server Role on a Windows Server 2012. Note that for this tutorial I will be using a Virtual Machine hosted on VMware. We’ve had a short introduction to Hyper-V in a past article and I think it’s better if you read it before proceeding with this post.
Because Hyper-V ships as an inbuilt role into Windows Server 2012, it can easily installed using the Server Manger Console. Once you’ve opened the console, navigate to the Roles section and select Hyper-V from the list. Hyper-V Module for Powershell and Hyper-V GUI Management Tools features will be added during the installation process.
The wizard prompts you to create a new virtual switch. This is a virtual device that binds to your physical interface and allows your Server to communicate with the rest of the network. From the available menu choose the interface used for this Hyper-V Server.
Server live migration can be enabled in the following section. For now, it’s best not to enable this feature because this is a testing environment and we will not interact with this feature.
We’ll need to specify the location for our virtual hard disk and configuration files. It’s best that you keep these files in separate folders this way you isolate any problem that may occur. I will leave the default locations and proceed with the Installation. You will need to be patience for a short period of time until the wizard is completed. Note that you will need to reboot the Server once the wizard is finished.
You can now open Hyper-V Manager console from Administrative Tools. Open Hyper-V Settings by right clicking on your Hyper-V mode. There are many configurable sections in this menu and you will need to access them when customizing your System. From this section you can configure the following: Virtual Hard Disks and Virtual Machines location, Physical GPU Settings, NUMA Spanning to allow non-uniform memory spanning, Live and Storage Migrations, Enhanced Session Mode Policy, Replica Configuration and User settings. Each option has a short description that will make you understand its basic role within Hyper-V. I like this menu because it’s pretty intuitive and allows you to configure Hyper-V pretty easy:
Using the Hyper-V Manager Console we can also Create, Edit or Inspect Virtual Disks. I will show you how to deploy a new Virtual Machine with Hyper-V in a future article and we will see how to edit a virtual disk. From the upper menu in the Action section you can see all available actions:
In the Virtual Switch Manager we can add virtual network devices which can be used within our virtualization infrastructure. If you are familiar with other virtualization products then this section may sound familiar. Hyper-V offers three types of virtual network switch, as follows:
- external – this virtual device binds to the physical network adapter. Used to allow connectivity between VMs and physical network
- internal – can be used only between the physical server and its Virtual Machines. No external access can be provided using this network switch
- private – can be used only between Virtual Machines that are part of the same Hyper-V server.
You can create one external virtual switch per physical interface but, you can create unlimited internal or private virtual switch. Once the virtual devices have been added in your Hyper-V Server, they can be configured just as physical interfaces from Control Panel\Network and Internet\Network Connections
You can configure virtual devices just as physical interfaces, you should already be familiar with this operation:
On the Virtual SAN Manager page, you can create virtual Fibre Channels for your SAN (Storage Area Network). I haven’t got the oportunity to work with this feature since I don’t have a testing storage device.
The Windows Service that manages Hyper-V is Hyper-V Virtual Machine Management and you can view its status using the Services Console or by using Server Manager in the Hyper-V section. Note that if this service crashes or is stopped, all Hyper-V dependencies and the whole virtualization platform will not work:
Hyper-V offers a lot of features that can be used within your virtual environment and we haven’t covered all aspects about this technology. This article should at least offer your some basic information on how to install and configure Hyper-V. In the next tutorial I will show you how to create a new VM using Hyper-V and we will later see how to use these machines to deploy new Windows Servers using WDS. Please use my comments section to post questions regarding this topic or if you think there are things that were not covered properly. Wish you all the best and don’t forget to enjoy your day!