Microsoft Virtual Server Eases Migrations

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2003-05-06 Print this article Print

Microsoft is offering a preview of the pre-beta code for its Virtual Server, which will enable customers to run NT 4 business applications as a virtual machine alongside Windows Server 2003.

Microsoft Corp. is giving customers a preview of the pre-beta code for its Virtual Server, which it acquired when it bought the virtual machine assets of Connectix Corp. in February. At that time Bill Veghte, a Microsoft corporate vice president, told eWEEK that one of the motivations behind the move was to be able to offer a solution that would let the companys customers running a Windows NT 4 line of business applications continue to run these as a virtual machine alongside its latest Windows Server 2003 product family. While there were things Veghte could do on the tool side, with imaging, "the piece that I really needed was the ability to run all the NT 4 business applications out there as a virtual machine," he said.
"The only way I know how to guarantee compatibility for those NT 4 applications is to build off of Connectix, which uses COM interfaces. They also use our Win32 APIs pretty aggressively and they use our driver subsystems, so it was a very good fit," he said.
In an interview with eWEEK this week, Alfredo Pizzirani, a group product manager in Microsofts Windows Server group, said that there had been a lot of customer interest around the product. "So we are responding to those and making the current version of the product available at using code VSCP. But the caveat is that at this point it is not performance-optimized or feature-complete, so customers should not use it for benchmarking or put it into production as yet," he said. An example of missing functionality: The virtual machine code does not allow for a virtual SCSI drive to be created as yet, but that will be in place by the final release, Pizzirani said.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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