Hyper-V: How to Upgrade from Hyper-V to Hyper-V R2

 

Microsoft has published an excellent overview of the upgrade process used to move from Hyper-V RTM to Hyper-V R2 (Hyper-V RTM is the final release of the original Hyper-V as opposed to the beta). You can find the Microsoft support document here:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/957256

The key factors I noticed where that snapshots are not fully compatible between Hyper-V and Hyper-V R2 and saved states are completely incompatible. If you have saved states for virtual machines, you will need to power off those virtual machines before an in-place upgrade. Of course, the knowledge base article also covers that export/import method of upgrading and the backup/restore method.

Hyper-V: How to Run Hyper-V on a Laptop

 

Running Hyper-V on a laptop computer provides several advantages. You can use it for testing, training and development. But how do you know if Hyper-V will run on your laptop?

Hyper-V has several requirements. Key among them are:

  • Windows Server 2008 Standard, Enterprise or Datacenter
  • Only 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2008 support it
  • Hardware assisted virtualization (Intel-VT or AMD-V)
  • Hardware DEP

 

The difficulty is in determining if your system meets these last two requirements. The Intel-VT and AMD-V hardware virtualization features are enabled or disabled in a computer’s BIOS. Vendors use different names to refer to the hardware virtualization support as well as hardware DEP. Here’s a great tool that will take the guesswork out of the process for you:

http://www.grc.com/securable.htm

Securable is a simple and free utility that reports on whether your system supports the key requirements of Hyper-V (64-bit, hardware DEP and hardware virtualization support). When you run it, you will see a screen similar to the following:

SecurAble showing no features for Hyper-V

If your screen shows 32 bits as the maximum length and no hardware DEP or virtualization, you cannot run Hyper-V. In fact, if just one of these three shows negative, you cannot run Hyper-V. Depending on the operating system, BIOS settings and the hardware, you may see messages that indicate that something is supported but not enabled. That’s not usually a problem – just turn it on in the BIOS.

When running Hyper-V on a laptop, I encourage you to have a laptop with at least 4 GB of RAM. With 4 GB of RAM you can potentially run to virtual machines at the same time. I am typing this blog on a laptop with 6 GB of RAM and it works great for Hyper-V testing and development – as well as training.

Hopefully, this will help get you started with Hyper-V on a laptop computer. Now days, a laptop isn’t so much different from a desktop – and that can be a really good thing for us IT geeks.

What does it mean for a certification book to be “official”?

I’ve had dozens of people email me to ask what it means now that McGraw-Hill is no longer the publisher of the Official CWNP study guides (CWNA, CWSP, CWTS, etc.). I decided to answer this question in a blog post. This way I can just refer the new emails to the post. Here’s the basic benefit of being the official study guide:

  • The CWNP program picks who the author/authors will be. This is a benefit in that the reader can be sure the CWNP program believes in the author.
  • The book gets to be listed as the official book.

 

No special insights into the exam are provided to the authors of the official book beyond that available to anyone, so no real benefit exists for the reader from the perspective of the "official" label. Giving special insight would be unethical (since the author would always claim to have passed the exam and yet he or she would have been exposed to special information about that exam) and the CWNP program is anything but unethical. In other words, the authors of the official book have no more insight into the exam than the authors of any other book. Anyone who writes a book for the exams – official or not – has access to the same resources:

  • Official classes
  • Objectives
  • CWNP.com

 

That’s really it. Now as far as picking the authors goes. The CWNP program picked me for Wireless#, the first book outsourced to be completely authored by a non-CWNP program employee. They picked myself and two co-authors for the CWSP study guide 2nd edition. They then picked me for the 4th Edition of the official CWNA study guide. They also hand-picked Joel Barrett to help guide the series at that time. Joel is an amazing engineer working with Cisco in wireless implementations on a very large scale. I am a consultant and trainer who implements an average of 4 to 5 wireless LANs each year. I teach from 5-6 week long custom CWNA/CWSP classes each year and I am continually researching the newest in wireless technologies. The point is that they would have picked me to write the official books again if I were available. In fact, I was offered the opportunity to write the official CWTS book for Sybex, but could not due to contractual obligations.

Due to their contractual issues with the CWNP program and nothing at all related to the content or writing style, McGraw-Hill lost the official label to Sybex. Sybex is also a great publisher (I write for them as well on non-overlapping topics) and the authors of the official study guides know their stuff well. Their new official CWNA book is exceptional and I expect their CWSP book will be as well.

I am in the process of writing a CWNA/CWSP All-in-One Guide book for McGraw-Hill that will be amazing because of the books format and intent. It will be a study guide, yes, but it will also be a very practical implementation resource. You will be receiving step-by-step instructions for implementing real hardware. I’m very excited about it. In addition, my CWTS book for McGraw-Hill is done and should hit the shelves in the next four weeks.

I hope this clears up any confusion and let me end by saying this: I work with both McGraw-Hill and Sybex and they are both great companies. I know David Coleman, one of the official authors now, and he is an awesome trainer with excellent knowledge. Finally, I absolutely love the CWNP program and the vendor neutral certifications they offer. Any rumors out there which cast a negative light on any of these three companies (McGraw-Hill, Sybex or Planet3/CWNP) will hopefully cease. Sometimes things don’t work out between companies, but I’m thankful that multiple products exist and the user community gets an excellent set of resources.

Happy modulation!