I've been spending some time with the newly released Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008. The two most important new features, according to Microsoft, are:
"With VMM 2008, you can create and manage virtual machines running on Hyper-V hosts. When adding hosts, if you add a host that is running Windows Server 2008 and does not have Hyper-V enabled, VMM 2008 will automatically enable the Hyper-V role on the host for you, " and
"With VMM 2008, you can create and manage virtual machines running on VMware ESX Server. By adding your VMware VirtualCenter Server to VMM 2008, you can now manage all of your virtual hosts from a single console.
"VMM 2008 provides most VirtualCenter Server functionality including VMotion. Additionally, VMM 2008 enhances your VMware servers with features, such as Intelligent Placement and Performance and Resource Optimization (PRO)."
As to the first, I can attest that indeed VMM 2008 will turn on the Hyper-V role in a machine that is running Windows Server 2008 where that role was not enabled. I'm not sure what the rocket science was here, but I'm sure it has something to do with helping Intelligent Placement along.
As to the second, I got most of the way toward enabling this when I was stymied by two things. First, we've spent a fair amount of time setting up our eWEEK Labs test VMware infrastructure. And I have a question about what exactly is going to happen when I start incorporating my VirtualCenter into VMM 2008. It's enough of a question that I need to chat with Jason Brooks and Andrew Garcia before I possibly blow away a crucial part of our shared test infrastructure.
I also had a more practical problem. When I installed VMM 2008 on a machine running on my (even more isolated) test network, which I call "camfrancisco," VMM 2008 installed fine. In fact, the screen shots that you see in the slide show (coming soon) are from this installation. However, when I installed VMM 2008 on a system in the shared lab infrastructure, what I'll call TheLab, I consistently got an error 1605.
In the Installation Settings|VMM service account, I selected "other account" and used an account I created for this purpose with Domain Admin privileges and was also an Administrator on Hyper-Me (my Windows 2008 test system.) As near as I can tell, this is exactly the same as my setup in camfrancisco. (The domain controller in both networks is Windows 2003 Enterprise.)
Installing VMM 2008 is at minimum a two-step process. First install the VMM Server and then the VMM Console. After installing the console on Hyper-Me when connected to TheLab, when attempting to start the VMM Console I get: "You cannot contact the Virtual Machine Manager server. The credentials provided have insufficient privileges on localhost. Ensure that your account has access to the Virtual Machine Manager server localhost, and then try the operation again. ID: 1605."
I've double-checked the DNS (Domain Name System) settings, turned off the Windows firewall, and tried this as both "cam" and administrator. Hmmm ... Like I said, it worked on camfrancisco. I'll keep you updated as I work through my connection problem. Then I'll let you know how my negotiations go with my fellow Labbies regarding hooking VMM into our VMware environment.