An Update on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V

I just read Michael Otey’s article, “Get Ready for Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V” and I noticed this comment and these scalability numbers:

[quote]This trend is sure to continue as the upcoming Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V essentially draws even with vSphere in feature parity. For scalability, Server 2012 Hyper-V supports 160 cores and 2TB of RAM per host. It will also support 64 vCPUs and 1TB of RAM per VM. Other important new capabilities will include 64-node clusters, shared-nothing Live Migration, Hyper-V Replica, and built-in NIC teaming.[/quote]

I just wanted to let you know that Microsoft has consistently increased scale at the Beta and now the Windows Server 2012 Release Preview. The numbers are substantially higher than Michael reported. Server 2012 Hyper-V now supports 320 cores and 4TB of RAM per host.

Michael also states that Hyper-V “draws even with vSphere.” I want to respectfully point out that Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V far surpasses VMware vSphere across the board. For a detailed comparison, see the white paper, “Why Hyper-V? Competitive Advantages of Windows Server 2012 Release Candidate Hyper-V over VMware vSphere 5.0.”

Finally, in Brad Anderson’s keynote at TechEd Europe, I demonstrated for the first time, a single virtual machine (VM) delivering more than 1 million I/O operations per second (IOPs). For context, VMware claims that it can deliver up to 300,000 IOPs from a single VM and needs six VMs to achieve 1,000,000. Microsoft can do it with one VM in Windows Server 2012.

IOmeter
Figure 1: Microsoft demo 

My demo begins at 58 minutes into the video, and Figure 1 shows a picture sent to me by someone in the audience. That’s industry-standard Iometer showing 1,026,026 IOPs. I even detailed all the hardware used in the demo in the keynote. Finally, Table 1 shows you just a few of the improvements since our last release.

—Jeff Woolsey, Principal Program Manager Lead, Windows Server and Cloud, Microsoft

Eisenberg WIN1833 Figure
Table 1: Hyper-V improvements

Off the Mark on SBS

Although I enjoy Paul Thurrott’s honest and typically well informed and incisive commentary about Microsoft products, I have to say that his WinInfo Short Takes commentary, “Microsoft Kills Windows Home and Small Business Server … But Fans Only Care About the Former,” is off the mark regarding Small Business Server (SBS).

SBS 2011 has two versions: SBS 2011 Essentials, which isn’t going anywhere, and SBS 2011 Standard, which is indeed outdated and will be dropped. However, Windows Server 2012 Essentials is not new; it's a continuation/upgrade of SBS 2011 Essentials. I think SBS 2011 Standard will be missed by a large number of partners and also by end users. They might not mourn the product name but rather the lack of a relatively low-cost on-premises solution. Server 2012 Essentials will handle only up to 25 users. What if you have a 40-user business that needs Active Directory (AD) and has inferior broadband? You’ll potentially be forced to buy full Windows Server and potentially Exchange Server Standard edition and pay more for services.

SBS was always about choice. Although I agree with you that Server 2012 Essentials is a great hybrid solution, limiting it to 25 users leaves a lot of customers out in the cold.
—Mark Mulvany