With the release of Windows Server 2016 a slew of new and exciting features have been added to Hyper-V. Plus some features have been updated. Below are some that I consider exciting and extremely helpful.
Hot add network card and memory
In Windows 2016, you can add or remove a network card to a VM as well as adjust the amount of memory to a VM, even if it is not set to dynamic memory, all without having to shut down the VM.
- NIC card add or delete must be Generation 2 VM running Windows or Linux
- Hot memory adds for Generation 1 or 2 VMs running Windows 10 or Server 2016
Rolling Hyper-V cluster upgrade
Now updating a Hyper-V cluster to 2016 is easier. You can add a node running Hyper-V 2016 to any cluster that is 2012 R2. As a result, you can update the cluster without downtime and exporting and importing virtual machines. The cluster will run at 2012 R2 level until all nodes are at 2016.
- Manage the cluster, Hyper-V, and virtual machines from a node running Windows Server 2016 or Windows 10.
- You can move virtual machines between all of the nodes in the Hyper-V cluster regardless of node OS.
- To use any of the new Hyper-V features, all nodes must run Windows Server 2016 and the cluster functional level must be updated. PowerShell command: Update-ClusterFunctionalLevel
- The virtual machine configuration version for existing virtual machines isn’t upgraded. You can upgrade the configuration version only after you upgrade the cluster functional level.
Now you can use a virtual machine as a virtualization host. This feature is best in a test or development environment. You’ll need:
- At least 4 GB RAM available for the virtualized Hyper-V host.
- To run at least Windows Server 2016 or Windows 10 build 10565 on both the physical Hyper-V host and the virtualized host. Running the same build in both the physical and virtualized environments generally improves performance.
- A processor with Intel VT-x (nested virtualization is available only for Intel processors at this time).
These are just a few of the new and improved features that are found in Hyper-V 2016. Microsoft is making it easier for companies to upgrade their hosts and clusters, so that you can take advantage of all that Windows Server and Hyper-V 2016 has to offer.
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