If you are planning on virtualizing servers in your environment you have probably considered physical to virtual migrations. If you are unfamiliar with this concept, to put it simply, it is the process of converting a server’s OS, programs, and data running on its own physical hardware to virtual instance hosted on a virtual platform. Microsoft Hyper-V provides the technology needed to virtualize one or many physical servers currently running in your environment. In this first of many Virtualization Blogs, I’d like to discuss a few different options when considering physical to virtual migrations.
Option 1 – Disk Imaging
A third party imaging utility such as Symantec Ghost would be used to take a Ghost image of a physical server. The Ghost image would then be deployed to a newly configured virtual machine created within Hyper-V. The problem associated with this option is dissimilar hardware, which is a common problem with all disk imaging. When hardware, such as disk controllers and processors, changes drastically between physical servers, the image is more likely to fail and not boot at all. So option one should only be used if you are an experienced IT support professional.
Option 2 – Hard disk conversion
The 2nd option to consider is to use a utility to convert your physical hard disks to VHD files. Sysinternals has a tool called Disk2vhd that will convert your physical hard disks to VHD files for use with Virtual PC or Hyper-V. This option is fairly straight forward. Once you create your VHD files, you simply import them into a new virtual machine.
Option 3 – System Center Virtual Machine Manager
The 3rd and most preferred option is to use Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager. SCVMM has a built in option to convert a physical server to a virtual server, all with the click of a button. One of the greatest features of this option is that you can run a P2V routine while the physical server is still online.
If your business is interested in reducing your server footprint through virtualization or is interested in implementing virtualization technology, contact Trigon today at 1-888-494-TRIGON or by email at solutions@TrigonIT.com.