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Virtualization

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Upgrading my home lab from ESXi 6.0 to ESXi 6.7

I deployed my original ESXi 6.0 home lab server back in 2015, and although I’ve been putting off upgrading the hardware, ESXi 6.7 was released in April 2018 and I’ve finally gotten around to upgrading ESXi.

I’m a Microsoft guy by trade, but wanted to build some experience around VMware so made the decision a number of years ago to have VMware ESXi in my home lab as my primary hypervisor instead of Hyper-V (although I have run them both in my home lab at one point). The biggest challenge I’ve had with this setup is using hardware that is on the VMware HCL and making sure that I could find supported drivers for the NICs I had laying around. Through this upgrade from 6.0 to 6.7, I found out first-hand how tricky dealing with non HCL’d hardware and lack of VMware-supported drivers would be. read more...

Windows Experience Index – Parallels vs. Fusion: How Do They Stack Up?

Since the release of Parallels 5 I have been a huge fan.  Previous to that, I really liked VMware Fusion as the product was much more mature and seemed more stable.  I really had no means to measure performance other than to gauge it by my perception over regular use.

Earlier this week, VMware announced their VMware Fusion 3.1 beta, which I had to run out and try.  I like to keep tabs on both of these products and am always curious when either of them releases an update.

That being said, I downloaded the beta ad built up a new Windows 7 virtual machine, installed the machine additions and played around a little bit. read more...

Windows 2008 Hyper-V Resource Kit Now Available

On June 10, Microsoft Press published the new “Windows 2008 Hyper-V Resource Kit” by Robert Larson and Janique Carbone.

For the past year, Shane Burton a fellow Microsoft Product Specialist here at Compellent, and myself have been working with Robert and Janique on this project and providing content, particularly “Notes from the Field” for the book, while our Compellent Marketing Alliance partner, John Porterfield kept us in line.

Compellent is a project sponsor at the Microsoft Partner Solution Center and provided Robert and Janique access to a Compellent Storage Center for testing storage-related scenarios that are included in the book. Compellent users will recognize a lot of the screenshots which were taken directly from the Storage Center Manager. read more...

Virtualized Performance Part 2: Parallels

A couple of weeks ago I posted a story about virtualized performance where I did a comparison between VMware Fusion and Sun’s VirtualBox.

I wanted to update that story to include some details on Windows performance when Parallels is added to the mix.

Interestingly enough, Parallels really isn’t that much further behind Fusion in terms of average boot time. To be precise, the difference is about .8 seconds between the two. Probably not that noticeable to the average user.

It comes down to features in that case. I also think there is a lot to be said about the stability of Fusion given VMware’s years of experience and product maturity. read more...