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Hyper-V Explained: Microsoft’s Hypervisor Based Virtualization

by Tim Attwood on June 20, 2011

Hyper-V & Windows Server 2008 R2Hypervisor virtualization is the most common type of managed VPS system that is currently available in the tech marketplace. This kind of virtualization relies on what is known as a “hypervisor”, which is a program that manages the hardware of an operating system and controls all functions of the virtual machines (VMs) that are running on the host computer.

Understanding Hyper-V VPS – The Basics

Virtualization comes in two types – the first relies on a managed system at the kernel or basic level of an OS to deal with all guest requests and manage each individual guest as if it were the only one on the server. The other, hypervisor virtualization, uses a hypervisor program to manage everything that goes on in each virtual environment created underneath it. The role of the hypervisor is to create and manage any virtual machines on the system – each one appears to a user as though it were present in a server in their local office, but is in fact stored in an off-site computer, and that computer is managed by a hypervisor.

The hypervisor not only controls how many virtual private servers are created, but also how those servers interact and what kind of access they will have to resources, both physical and virtual. A properly-running hypervisor can ensure that all VMs on a machine get the resources they are looking for without causing slowdown for other machines.

Currently, that is an area of concern for those using virtualization on a large-scale, as some providers choose to overload their machines, resulting in slow response times and poor server control. A well-managed server environment should not only limit the interaction between VMs that are present, but should not allow for the creation of random or uncontrolled VMs in the broader landscape.

The VDS and VPS Confusion

The terms “virtual private server” (VPS) and “virtual dedicated server” (VDS) are often used interchangeably in the world of cloud and virtual computing. Both effectively amount to the same thing, and are often used to refer to a virtual machine that is created for a company on a Hyper-V VPS system. But while these terms can be applied in a broad spectrum and to container-based virtualization as well, the use of VDS is often more appropriate when it comes to hypervisor managed systems. This is because of the inherent sharing that occurs at a system level in a Hyper-V environment, something that is not present in a container-based option.

While the server used by a company is for all intents and purposes private, the term “dedicated” is often more applicable to Hyper-V servers as they are able to leverage the power of a computer to host many users, but give each one access to a dedicated piece of the entire server.

Benefits of Hyper-V

Hyper-V VDS technology is known for being both scalable and upgradable, and for providing excellent up-time to users. Because of the nature of hypervisor technology, users can choose to run any OS they wish at a local level, and it will not interfere with others that are stored on the server. In addition, Hyper-V VDS can respond quickly to problems that may arise in a single VDS and allow for correction to take place before the problem spreads and all VMs on a machine are suddenly vulnerable to an attack.

While this technology still faces a number of concerns in the cloud world such as security and I/O partitioning, Hyper-V virtualization options are still some of the most reliable currently available.

Related posts:

  1. Virtuozzo vs. Hyper-V: Comparing Container and Hypervisor Virtualization
  2. Virtuozzo VPS Explained: What Is Container Based Virtualization?
  3. Virtualization with Microsoft Hyper-V
  4. The Case for Hyper-V VDS over Dedicated Hosting
  5. Virtuozzo OS Level Virtualization VPS Hosting vs. Other Hardware Level Virtualization

{ 5 comments }

WrigleyF June 20, 2011 at 9:40 AM

I love how you can use any OS you want when you have a hypervisor. This kind of freedom is really important.

Randy5 June 20, 2011 at 9:42 AM

I didn’t realize that VPS and VDS weren’t quite interchangeable terms, and I certainly was unaware that VDS was the better choice for a hypervisor.

PotsNPans June 20, 2011 at 9:44 AM

As I understand it, the issues with I/O partitioning that have come up with hypervisors are relatively minor.

Rusher June 30, 2011 at 9:04 AM

Slowdown on various machines has long been a major problem for the company I work for, so hypervisor is something we really need.

OfftheWall October 27, 2011 at 5:45 AM

We’ve had that same problem, Rusher. I love the idea of not having to worry about slowdowns or not having enough resources. What an exciting world we live in!

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