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Virtuozzo vs. Hyper-V: Comparing Container and Hypervisor Virtualization

by Tim Attwood on October 4, 2011

Parallels Virtuozzo ContainersThe key feature of virtualization which sets it apart from shared or local hosting is the ability to compartmentalize server space and allocate it to different users, each of which appears to be unique and not affected by any of the other users located on the same physical server. When making the switch from a shared or local solution to a VPS environment, one of the first choices a business will come across is how they wish to manage their virtualization, and providers will typically offer one of two ways to accomplish this goal – Virtuozzo VPS hosting or Windows Hyper-V VPS hosting.

Container-Based Virtualization vs. Hypervisor-Based Virtualization

These two systems of virtualization – Virtuozzo made by Parallels and Hyper-V by Microsoft – represent two different ways to partition servers in order to give users the privacy and control they need. Virtuozzo uses what is known as container-based or operating system-level virtualization. In this type of virtualization, the kernel of an operating system permits multiple, isolated instances of a server to be created, allowing all users to have their own private space. A finite number of resources can then be allocated to users depending on their needs.

Windows Hyper-V VPS hosting, meanwhile, uses a program known as a hypervisor, so named because it is a level higher than a supervisory program. The hypervisor allows a server to be split into multiple, private sections or “virtual machines” and can then control, on the fly, how much of the resource pool is allocated to each user. It is possible to run a hypervisor directly on hardware – known as bare metal – or to have it run on another operating system, such as Linux.

The Case for Hyper-V VPS Hosting

Microsoft’s Hyper-V technology offers a number of advantages for businesses looking at reliable VPS hosting. First, Hyper-V is designed to work flawlessly with Windows Server products, meaning updates, security and patching will all be taken care of with no conflicts between server programming and hypervisor. In addition, a Hyper-V based virtualization option will allow you to create multiple instances of Windows servers, each running a different version of the program. For a web developer, this can provide a significant advantage as it will allow them to test programs and apps in multiple OS environments.

Hyper-V & Windows Server 2008 R2While Hyper-V is designed to work with Windows servers and not Linux, it is possible to use options like Suse 10 to test Linux-based applications within a Hyper-V managed server. Hyper-V also has the advantage of allowing dedicated RAM allotments to be set, and can be a better predictor of performance, as hypervisor technology is able to dynamically respond to server use and ensure that resources are distributed as needed.

The Case for Virtuozzo VPS Hosting

Virtuozzo, which is a server partitioning program created by Parallels, also offers a number of advantages, the first of which is that it can be used with either a Windows or Linux OS, whatever works better for the virtual host. Virtuozzo also makes installing a control panel option such as Plesk – also made by Parallels – far easier. The Plesk Control Panel can notify users about server issues, manage routine maintenance tasks and help to easily set up and update web sites.

Virtuozzo itself comes with a web-based GUI known as the Virtuozzo Power Panel. This panel allows users to manage the servers they own over the Web, and without the server itself having to be up and running. Everything from changing the power state of the server to viewing what processes are taking place is possible with the Power Panel. Virtuozzo offers an easier visual interface than Hyper-V, as well as the ability to have full root access and restore a single file or the whole VPS as needed.

The Final Word

Both Hyper-V and Virtuozzo VPS hosting offer a number of advantages that can benefit users on a server. Both permit a user to have a “private” slice of the server, one that does not interfere with others sharing the same physical space, and one that believes and acts as if it were alone. Virtuozzo was designed as a commercial server hosting platform, whereas Hyper-V was designed specifically to work with Windows and its line of server products. Ultimately, which one is chosen comes down to a company’s needs and a discussion about which features are more important – commercial flexibility from Parallels, or managed stability from Microsoft. Both are powerful, can guarantee uptime, and will provide robust VPS performance.

Related posts:

  1. Virtuozzo VPS Explained: What Is Container Based Virtualization?
  2. Hyper-V Explained: Microsoft’s Hypervisor Based Virtualization
  3. Virtuozzo OS Level Virtualization VPS Hosting vs. Other Hardware Level Virtualization
  4. Better and Best OpenVZ Vs Virtuozzo
  5. Virtuozzo VPS Hosting is the New Kid on the Virtualization Block with Some Mad Skills

{ 8 comments }

Rusher October 5, 2011 at 10:48 AM

It’s good to know that Parallels and Microsoft are both strong and robust, with good uptimes. Everything else is just gravy!

WrigleyF October 5, 2011 at 10:50 AM

I like that Plesk informs you about server issues. This makes troubleshooting a lot easier.

PotsNPans October 5, 2011 at 10:52 AM

Are there a lot of drawbacks to a bare metal style of operation?

Shane Goodman October 8, 2011 at 10:37 PM

I heard that Virtuozzo has ‘burstable RAM’, which can scale up to 100% of the server’s RAM, whereas with Hyper-V you are restricted to the amount of RAM that has been allocated to you.

Can someone confirm if this true?

Randy5 November 10, 2011 at 4:32 PM

This isn’t a 100% confirmation, because I’m not so sure myself, but I’ve heard that Virtuozzo and OpenVZ both offer burstable RAM. On the other hand, I don’t think Hyper-V offers burstable RAM.

Stoddard December 29, 2011 at 11:38 AM

If that’s true, Randy 5, then it’s a strong argument for Virtuozzo. However, if you were sure you wouldn’t need a sudden burst of RAM, then Hyper-V would be just fine.

Maey O'Neil May 17, 2012 at 2:11 PM

I have been using Windows Server 2003 + Virtuozzo. What I like about this combination is that my systems run on all available CPU cores (8 in my case). This is a big advantage if a system has been consciously designed to multi-thread wherever possible… thus true parallel processing when multiple cores are running different threads simultaneously.

I obviously wat to migrate upwards as Server 2003 has a scheduled EOL of 2015.

My question is… does Hyper-V allow the same CPU cores utilisation ?

design vancouver seo canadian September 6, 2012 at 3:27 AM

Very neat article post.Much thanks again. Will read on…

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