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back to article Microsoft releases VMware-eater

One of the more interesting moments at this year's VMworld keynote saw outgoing CEO Paul Maritz proclaim, in an unusual-for-him strident tone, that one cannot beat Microsoft on price. One beats Microsoft on value, he concluded, before implying that VMware will do that blindfolded and with one arm tied behind its back. The …

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Anonymous Coward

Given the Windows server 2012 licensing scheme and costs Hyper-V neesd to be a hell of a lot better than vSphere to get people to switch; not just about as good.

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Meh

licensing costs.

Unless you are running Linux/BSD or something similar on your VMs, you're most likely going to have to license them with WIndows anyway.

(and looking at costs.. my last quote was almost 50% less for a Hyper-V solution compared to a VMware Enterprise cluster, with the same hardware, where the Hyper-V cluster also covered Windows license costs for all VM's)

I'm a happy VMWare user, but on costs they are not going to win this race.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: licensing costs.

>(and looking at costs.. my last quote was almost 50% less for a Hyper-V solution compared to a VMware Enterprise cluster, with the same hardware, where the Hyper-V cluster also covered Windows license costs for all VM's)

I am assuming that quote was on Server 2008 R2 base. Try getting another one on a 2012 base. We did that a month ago and while it was still cheaper than vSphere (we are using that at the moment) it was nowhere near the discount we expected and therefore it was not worth the hassle and cost of switching over. (Or running dual systems side-by-side)

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Mushroom

Hyper-V Server 2012 is completely free so dont get your point about costs? And as to licensing, whats the issue?

VMWare have got big problems - Hyper-V 2012 matches or exceeds the performance of Vsphere 5, it is totally free, and it can cope with 64TB VM Disks whereas Vsphere is still crippled with a 2TB limit.

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Ho hum....

And VMware Converter is how old?

Also, hasn't the abomination called System Center (specifically SCVMM) had the ability to convert VMware VMs for a while too?

None of this convinces me that Hyper-V (even the much improved 2012) is fit for much more than small installations or test/dev. A funky converter is a trinket - better security, better networking, greater reliability, greater (and simpler) scalability and management are what's needed. Hyper-V ain't there yet!

As the old proverb says "wait for the first Service Pack".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Ho hum....

A convert is not a trinket, if you've got even as little as ten to a hundred VMs, a converter is absolutely essential.

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Mushroom

Re: Ho hum....

Security? You mean like Vsphere 4 having more vulnerabilities than the whole of Windows Server 2008?

Better networking - you mean like the shared nothing migration in Hyper-V that vsphere still cant manage? Or software networking thats free in the base Hyper-V product, but for Vsphere you have to spend a fortune on Vcloud Director?

Greater reliability - you mean like cross datacentre clustering and replication free in the base Hyper-V product?

Scalability - you mean like 32 times the disk size, twice the VMs per cluster and 3 times the IOPS of Vsphere? http://blogs.technet.com/b/schadinio/archive/2012/07/07/over-1-million-iops-from-a-single-vm.aspx

Management - you mean like SCOM, SCCM, SCSM, and SCO? A far more capable and integrated offering than anything Vsphere has.....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Ho hum....

"Better networking - you mean like the shared nothing migration in Hyper-V that vsphere still cant manage? "

Can't it? I think you'd better get reading because you are sadly mistaken.

"Or software networking thats free in the base Hyper-V product, but for Vsphere you have to spend a fortune on Vcloud Director?"

No idea what you're talking about there. vSphere comes with the standard and distributed vSwitch bundled in. No need for vCloud Director for either of those.

"Greater reliability - you mean like cross datacentre clustering and replication free in the base Hyper-V product?"

Only because Windows needs it. When you build a custom hypervisor that doesn't have a reliance on an ancient codebase you tend to get better uptime.

"Scalability - you mean like 32 times the disk size,"

Hoorah! You finally got one right. Had to happen with enough guesses though........

" twice the VMs per cluster and 3 times the IOPS of Vsphere? http://blogs.technet.com/b/schadinio/archive/2012/07/07/over-1-million-iops-from-a-single-vm.aspx"

Your information is sadly outdated yet again.

"Management - you mean like SCOM, SCCM, SCSM, and SCO? A far more capable and integrated offering than anything Vsphere has....."

LOL. You mean I need 4 separate products to manage such a simple hypervisor?

Hyper-v might be alright for labs or SOHO environments, but when you're looking at critical applications for enterprises the lack of granular resource controls such as NIOC, SIOC etc. make it a no brainer. You would have to go with vSphere. The same lack of features means the MSFT offering is definitely not suitable for any form of multitenancy either.

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Re: Ho hum....

<quote>"Greater reliability - you mean like cross datacentre clustering and replication free in the base Hyper-V product?"

Only because Windows needs it. When you build a custom hypervisor that doesn't have a reliance on an ancient codebase you tend to get better uptime.</quote>

Without things like cross-centre clustering and replication how do you cope with physical catastrophes? Things like fire, flood, lighning strike, big truck crashes through machine room wall, earthquake takes down building containing system, terrorist assault on public power system leaves you to run on battery backup & standby generator, with no prospect of being able to get extra fuel or restored external power before you run out of fuel for standby generator? Those are the sort of things cross-centre clustering and replication can deal with. I will bet you can't explain how VMWare deals with them as part of the basic license with additional license costs (because it must be hard to explain how it does something it doesn't do).

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Mushroom

Re: Ho hum....

Vsphere still DOES NOT have shared nothing migration.

You clearly dont understand what proper software defined networking is in the sense referred to here. Try reading http://blogs.technet.com/b/windowsserver/archive/2012/04/16/introducing-windows-server-8-hyper-v-network-virtualization-enabling-rapid-migration-and-workload-isolation-in-the-cloud.aspx or Google GRE or IP ReWrite. This is something that you need Vcloud Director to approach the capabilities of with Vmware - and it's stil not as featured.

Clustering / Replication - so why does VMWare provide it as a chargeable option then if only a Microsoft Hypervisor would need it?

None of those products manages the Hypervisor actually. That would be SCVMM. I was referring to value add above the Hypervisor management - which VMWare has in System Centre.

Hyper-V 2012 actually has more flexible and all encompassing resouce control than VMware does - and a fully plugin enabled stack to let vendors write their own options at multiple levels in the Hypervisor driver stack.

Again you just demonstrate your complete cluelessness - Hyper-V 2012 is much better and more powerful at providing a multisite, multi-tenant cloud then VMWare (Which requires that you also buy Vcloud Director).

It also supports full QoS and network resource control:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh831511.aspx

About the only thing you mention that Hyper-V doesnt yet support is SIOC. But then for that you need to pay for the top VMware licence, versus Hyper-V being free.....And I have never seen an environment that used SIOC. A better solution is to control the QoS on your enterprise stroage array and put such performance sensitive systems on a dedicated partition...

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Windows

I'll believe it when I see it...

Now, this is probably comparing apples and oranges but MS has their VirtualPC for quite some time now. Its even featured with Win7 professional as "Windowx XP mode", this allows Win7 pro users to run a virtual Windows XP instance.

Of course this is where the good part of the story ends. While it can grok server 2008 and such it won't run Windows 8 for example (which I consider a pretty fail). Nor most linux distributions (I have managed to get Debian to work, but it wasn't easy and that's about it wrt Linux).

So with this in mind... Topping VMWare? I'll believe that the moment I'm able to run a virtual Windows 8 on my current Windows 7 using a Microsoft based solution.

But until then....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I'll believe it when I see it...

Odd, I've Unbuntu VM on Windows 7 box and we've Win8 running happy as well...

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Re: I'll believe it when I see it...

You must be doing something wrong, my first experience with Linux was Ubuntu way back when; inside a VM.

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Happy

Re: I'll believe it when I see it...

The article is about Microsoft Hyper-V and NOT microsoft virtualPC on W7. HyperV-2008 is free or if you buy a 2008 server license instead of W7 and put on your laptop you can then enable the hyper-v role. Basically ditch the virtualPC and get using HyperV (or a hypervisored VMware) it is much faster.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I'll believe it when I see it...

FYI, between 2007 and 2010 versions, MS Virtual PC lost the ability to run Linux distros.

In particular Ubuntu - I tried over a year ago, and while the old Virtual PC ran fine, the latest version could not boot it.

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Holmes

'Free' licenses

Don't forget that with HyperV you get multiple 'free' Windows server licenses on each HyperV node. For Windows shops, this is a big plus. Affects the pricing greatly if you look at the bigger picture. Also MS priocing for public sector and edu is heavily discounted which should make it tempting there too. I doubt most HyperV bashers have used it and are simply protecting their VCP investment / hate MS.

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Re: 'Free' licenses

VMware also discounts academic licensing.

Also worth mentioning - Microsoft's prohibitive additional licensing costs for virtual desktops are currently holding up VDI projects (MS VDA tax is close to the cost price of the virtualisation platform - and is annual). MS customers are waiting for the day where there is an alternative to being forced to upgrade Windows desktop and VMware is enabling that also.

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Mushroom

Re: 'Free' licenses

No you dont - Hyper-V does not come with ANY virtualisation rights. Only Windows Server has that....

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Anonymous Coward

So you are not in favour of closed systems but you are also not in favour of Microsoft competing for market share by producing their own versions of existing products?

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Gold badge

"If you write software for windows, you're doomed. If you make money, MS will try to kill you by copying your software."

The examples you give are special cases, where the target market is big enough to arouse Microsoft's interest. Nearly all third-party Windows software targets massively smaller (but still lucrative) markets and will never be copied by Microsoft because they don't care.

"It's hard to think of any area where MS does not now produce a product"

That's a pretty peculiar definition of "area" you have there.

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FAIL

If you write software for windows, you're doomed. If you make money, MS will try to kill you by copying your software.

So the solution is to write software for Linux, right? That way you'll never make money and therefore won't have to worry. Win!

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Anonymous Coward

You still have to worry about accidentally violating the (L)GPL either in practice or in spirit and having a horde of angry people coming to shout at you.

I mean for gods sake, if I am reading it correctly the LGPL requires that you only use macros or inline functions that are fewer than 10 lines in length if you want to include the header file in software that uses a different license. So does that means you have to check every single macro and inline function before you use it?

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Anonymous Coward

@Eadon

If I link my own code against the Windows libraries using Microsoft headers I can distribute it under what ever license I wish. If I distribute code linked against fairly vital libraries for the Linux OS I am more restricted. So no, you are wrong. In a way the GPL restricts you more in this particular case than Microsoft does

Also, this calling people "shills" business is pathetic and getting out of hand, it devalues your argument and is against the house rules. Seems to have cropped up more and more since the Oracle vs. Google case.

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Anonymous Coward

No, you aren't reading it correctly.

The whole bloody point of the LGPL is that it lets you link against libraries without requiring you to release the source of your main app.

I have no reason to believe you are a shill. I simply believe you are a sucker who has swallowed someone else's FUD hook, line and sinker, and are now parroting it without any understanding of what you are talking about or any clue how wrong you are.

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No library problems

"If I link my own code against the Windows libraries using Microsoft headers I can distribute it under what ever license I wish. If I distribute code linked against fairly vital libraries for the Linux OS I am more restricted."

Absolutely false, and I have no idea where you got this idea from. I went around trying to find GPL'ed libraries. What did I find? GNU Readline (which, in fact was switched to GPL specifically to try to prevent commercial software from using it. Bleh.) That's it! The rest are LGPL (which SPECIFICALLY was designed to permit linking against the LGPL'ed software without affecting your license at all), or other licenses (MPL or the like) that are even more permissive than LGPL.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No, you aren't reading it correctly.

Oh good, name calling and shouting "FUD". I am willing to accept the fact that I have misunderstood the LGPL. But just take a breath and explain the 10 line limitation mention in section 3 of the LGPL to me then.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No, you aren't reading it correctly.

@Eadon

And you are ignoring the fact that I asked a question and said I was willing to be corrected on my original point if someone could clear it up for me. If I am guilty of posting disinformation then it's by accident and everybody is too busy yelling at me for questioning FOSS to tell me why I am mistaken.

If you are accusing me of posting disinformation whilst yourself not understanding the LGPL then you are being somewhat hypocritical.

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Uncomfortable

Don't know about anyone else but I would be very uncomfortable in having the underlying Host using the same OS or OS from the same Vendor as the VMs I'm running. It doesn't matter how good the separation of the Host OS and the Hypervisor layer is but its a potential headache I can do without.

My view, regardless of cost, it has to be VMWare.

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Meh

Skinnykernelsplease

Agree with you Sandeep. One of the real beauties of VMware is the I/O seperation between host and machine from guests. Anaconda (or whatever the strip is called these days) is fast and highly efficient and does not contend I/O in the way that I have found that Hyper-V does.

Quite aside from that is the suitability of Hyper-V as an enterprise platform. For SMEs who run Windows Server toys only then that's not an issue and they will be more sensitive to price than value. For anything 'long trousers', including high-workloads and Linux, I really wouldn't put my faith in Hyper-V to provide cross-platform guests when VMWare has been doing this reliably for years.

As for the VMDK trick, well, as the article points out - this is yesterday's news for just about every virtualisation platform on the market. I just don't see any innovation here, just another 'ah, we need to chase this market like Don Quioxte at a windmill (again)'.

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Blargh!

To Heck with both MS and VMware. At least VirtualBox is mostly open source! Personally, I have a hate-like-hate relationship with Oracle, but I have been a happy user of VirtualBox for over 5 years now. For data center (yeah, I'm a Yank) applications use KVM on Red Hat Enterprise distributions, but for personal productivity/development purposes, VBox is the best (IMHO) option out there, for Windows and Linux (client or host). Can't speak for OSX since I don't have an iDevice. I do run Windows (several versions), Linux (many distributions), x86 Solaris, QNX, DOS, and other x86 operating on VBox and have had zero problems with any of them.

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Anonymous Coward

VMware to Hyper-V migration

I'm seeing more and more customers refreshing their virtual environment with Hyper-V. Unless you're using some of the more advanced features of the VMWare environment, Microsoft's offering is perfectly adequate, stable, scalable and significantly lower cost than heading down the VMware path once again.

Their recent pricing changes announced at VMWorld will address some of the drift to MSFT, but it's happening and it's real.

I sell desktop virtualization, server farms and data centre infrastructure including both of the above (and Citrix Xen), so AC.

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Thumb Down

The largest deal breaker for MS VM will never be fixed.

Your VM's run on Windows, subject to the never ending slew of security vulnerabilities. At the very least you need to down all of your VMs to patch once a month, some months multiple times. A typical VMWare host runs for years if not its entire life without ever rebooting. I have never seen a Windows host run for more than a few months without a memory leak or something requiring a reboot. Compared to Xen, VMWare, Hyper-V is like building your home on a foundation of sand. I pity those who think this is a business worthy product.

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Mushroom

Re: The largest deal breaker for MS VM will never be fixed.

You clearly don't have a clue what you are talking about. The whole of Windows Server has several times fewer vulnerabilities than Vsphere, and Hyper-V Server has an order of magnitude fewer vulnerabilities than vSphere.....

http://secunia.com/advisories/product/26339/

http://secunia.com/advisories/product/30987/

http://secunia.com/advisories/product/25985/

http://secunia.com/advisories/product/18255/

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Hyper-V sucks.

Greatly improved Hyper-V... sucks less... but still sucks.

End of story.

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Mushroom

What an intelligent informative comment. Not.

Hyper-V exceeds or has caught up with VMware in pretty much every key area. So if it sucks, it sucks less than the market leader....

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