How to: Building a virtual Hyper-V 2012 R2 infrastructure

NOTE! Building this environment is not supported by Microsoft. This is only usefull for study Hyper-V and the System Center 2012 R2 Suite.

When you want to build an Hyper-V cluster, you’ve have to had at least 2 servers or desktop machines for your Hyper-V host servers. I don’t have that much hardware, so I want to install and run everything on my desktop machine (see this blogpost). But wait for a moment, we want to install a hypervisor within a hypervisor? Is this  possible? The answer is yes and no!

Installing Hyper-V isn’t that difficult. Just hit a copple of times on “Next” and your Hyper-V host is up and running. But the next step is to install a new VM and enabling the Hyper-V Server Role. When you enable the Hyper-V Server Role within a virtual machine, you’ll receive an error. This is because Windows is checking all the prerequisites for enabling the Hyper-V role.

So, there’s a way to install Hyper-V whitin a Hyper-V environment. The only thing is, you cannot start a VM within this virtualized Hyper-V host. So you can build for example a Hyper-V cluster with multiple VM’s on it, but you cannot start these machines!! For me it is enough for testing purposes and studying. For example, you can build your own virtual Private Cloud with Hyper-V 2012 R2 and System Center 2012 R2.

1.) I’ve installed 2 new VM’s within Hyper-V 2012 R2. These are going to be the virtualized Hyper-V hosts.
2.) The Hyper-V Server Role is still disabled
Get-WindowsFeature -Name Hype*
3.) Install the Hyper-V role
Enable-WindowsOptioanlFeature -Online -FeatureName Microsoft-Hyper-V -All -NoRestart
4.) Install the Hyper-V management tools
Install-WindowsFeature RSAT-Hyper-V-Tools -IncludeAllSubFeature
5.) Install the Windows Failover Clustering Feature
Install-WindowsFeature RSAT-Clustering -IncludeAllSubFeature
6.) Install the Multipath IO feature for ISCSI storage
Install-WindowsFeature Multipath-IO
7.) Restart the machine 8.) After the reboot you’re able to create and build your Hyper-V cluster

NOTE! Building this environment is not supported by Microsoft. This is only usefull for study Hyper-V and the System Center 2012 R2 Suite.

2013-12-16_11h58_06    2013-12-16_11h58_41    2013-12-16_12h00_08

2013-12-16_12h00_30    2013-12-16_12h02_58    2013-12-16_12h03_22

2013-12-16_12h04_26    2013-12-16_12h04_51    2013-12-16_12h05_16

2013-12-16_12h05_29    2013-12-16_12h05_46    2013-12-16_12h19_19


Hyper-V 2012 R2 Bandwith Management

A really great and powerfull new feature within Hyper-V 2012 R2 is “Bandwith Management”. With this new feature, you’re able to limit the bandwith of a particular VM. So for example, if you have a VM that generates a lot of network traffic, you can limit the bandwith. To show how powerfull this feature is, I’ve builded a small demo environment.

I’ve created two VM’s. They’re connected through the same Virtual Switich “Internal – LAN”. To generate some network traffic, you’ve have also need some data. To create some testfiles or dummy files, you can use the tool FSUTIL.exe. This tool is default available in Windows 2003 and later. In my testlab I’ve created some testfiles. The size of an dummy file is calculated in bits, so to create a file of 1 GB or 5 GB looks like:

1024 * 1024 * 1024 * 1 or 5 (or another size in GB). So first you’ll get the Bits, then Bytes, then Mega Bytes, then Giga Bytes.
1 GB = 1073741824  
5 GB =  5368709120

C:\Windows\System32\fsutil file createnew D:\dummy_1GB.file 1073741824
C:\Windows\System32\fsutil file createnew D:\dummy_5GB.file 5368709120

Just copy the “dummy” files from VM1 to VM2 and let’s see how many throughput we have without some limitations. After that, I’ve enabled bandwith management and limit the VM one 15 MBps, that’s not that much 🙂 Let’s copy the “dummy” files again….now you see that the network traffic stocks at 15 MBps. That’s gonna take some time to copy all that data 😉

BM_01    BM_02    BM_03

BM_04    BM_05    BM_07

BM_08    BM_09

In this example you’ve seen how powerfull the new bandwith management feature is within Hyper-V. Whitout bandwith management, there’re no limitations at all. With bandwith management enabled, you can just give that much bandwith to a particular VM you want. That’s really great and really powerfull!!

Win a FREE ticket for the event of the year….ExpertsLive 2013!


There are a copple of great events during the year. Microsoft TechEd, MMS, TechDays….but there’s is another great event upcoming! ExpertsLive 2013. This great event is the place to be for every IT Pro. With more then 30 speakers, 30 sessions about the newest Microsoft products. System Center 2012, Hyper-V 2012 R2, Server 2012 R2, Exchange 2013, Windows Azure, SQL 2012 and a lot more!!

There are only a few tickets left, but how cool is it to win a FREE ticket for this great event.  Im really honoured that I had the possibility to give away a FREE ticket for ExpertsLive 2013. Just send an personal message on Twitter to @Mark_Swinkels and tell me why you should win this FREE ticket for ExpertsLive 2013! I’ll pick one lucky winner of all the messages.

Information about ExpersLive 2013 and the program of all the session can be found at


Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V Component Architecture Poster

 Microsoft has released the Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V Component Architecture Poster and some Hyper-V mini posters.

“Provides a visual reference for understanding key Hyper-V technologies in Windows Server 2012 R2 and focuses on Generation 2 virtual machines, Hyper-V with virtual hard disk sharing, online virtual hard disk resizing, storage quality-of-service, enhanced session mode, live migration, Hyper-V failover clustering, and upgrading your private cloud.”

Download the posters here.


Hyper-V 2012 R2 announced!

Last week on TechEd North America, Windows Server 2012 R2 is announced. Here are some highlights of “Hyper-V – What’s New in Windows Serve 2012 R2” session (MDC-B330):

Generation 2 VM: A generation 2 VM knows that it is virtualized! It can boot ISCSI and synthetic NIC, so no emulated hardware anymore! A generation 2 VM is available for Windows 8 and Server 2012 or higher. Converting a VM to a generation 2 VM is not possible.
Automatic Activation: No more KMS servers in your environment to activate your guest VM’s. Now it is possible to automaic activate your guest VM’s using OEM or volume licenses.
Online VHDX resize: Do you need any more disk space? Increase and decrease the size of the virtual hard disks online. The VM is up and running while performing this action!
Zero downtime upgrade: Upgrade from Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V to Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V without any downtime using cross version live migration.
Faster Live Migration: Live Migration is about 2 times faster now using compression.
Linux guest support: Linux VM’s are fully supported now. Use dynamic memory, online backup, online VHDX resize and better video experience using new video drivers.
Compatibility with Windows Azure IaaS:  Windows Azure IaaS uses exactly the same Virtualization as Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V, so VM’s can be moved between your private cloud and the public cloud!
Enhanced VM inteaction: Remote Desktop over the VMBUS, which enables full remote desktop capabilities, copy files, enhanced login, audio redirection, and even more.

There are a lot of more new features and capabilities within the new Hyper-V 2012 R2 release. Hopefully I can see some information in Madrid at the Microsoft TechEd Europe! 🙂