Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

Summary: Microsoft unveils a Windows 8 client feature that power users will really like - Hyper-V.

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I've been on the lookout for cool, killer features in the upcoming client version of Windows 8, and Microsoft just made my day.

The feature ... Hyper-V. Those of you who play with server versions of Windows will know that Hyper-V has been part of Windows Server for the last two releases, but now Microsoft is bringing it to client versions.

Mathew John, program manager on our Hyper-V team, breaks the news over on the Building Windows 8 blog:

In building Windows 8 we worked to enable Hyper-V, the machine virtualization technology that has been part of the last 2 releases of Windows Server, to function on the client OS as well. In brief, Hyper-V lets you run more than one 32-bit or 64-bit x86 operating system at the same time on the same computer. Instead of working directly with the computer's hardware, the operating systems run inside of a virtual machine (VM).

Hyper-V also sounds like it plays nicely with system resources. A system with 4GB of RAM can run three or four VMs simultaneously, with memory being allocated and deallocated dynamically. If you have the resources you can create a VM with 32 processors and 512GB RAM, which should be enough for anyone.

But there's more - in the form of a cool feature. Normally you connect to the VM using the VM Console application but this places all sorts of limits of you. For example, you're limited to one screen with resolution up to 1600x1200 in 32-bit color. But if you connect to the VM through Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) you can leverage the capabilities of the physical PC. So, if you have three screens in your PC, you'll be able to use them all. If you have touch capability, you'll be able to use it. If you have great multimedia capability, that will be available.

I like it! I like it a lot!

Note: You can already connect to Hyper-V VMs using RDC, but it's hardly 'one-click.'

Adding Hyper-V to the client versions of Windows 8 will please power users. This is something that I'll certainly find useful.

Windows 8 is already feeling far more interesting than Windows 7 did at this stage.

Topics: Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software, Windows

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31 comments
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  • They had no choice

    Linux comes with KVM and that is a steamroller which is going to roll right over Windows when it comes to pure performance and savings.
    Dietrich T. Schmitz *Your
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate

      And what desktop share does linux have and KVM has nothing to do with this windows post....
      Viper589
      • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

        @Knix96

        KVM is a competing product of Hyper-V, so yes it is relevant. And if the fact that KVM is free is a determining factor in Hyper-V being included in Win8, then that makes it even more relevant to discuss.

        Having said that, I would disagree with his assessment that KVM will roll over Windows, especially on the desktop. The biggest issue with running Windows simultaneously with Linux is that you get DirectX issues, which affects games. Games are going to be the applications which hypervisors will be benchmarked against on the desktop, and I would give MS a solid edge on that.
        Michael Kelly
      • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

        @Knix96<br><br>KVM is a competing product of Hyper-V, so yes it is relevant. And if the fact that KVM is free is a determining factor in Hyper-V being included in Win8, then that makes it even more relevant to discuss.<br><br>Having said that, I would disagree with his assessment that KVM will roll over Hyper-V, especially on the desktop. The biggest issue with running Windows simultaneously with Linux is that you get DirectX issues, which affects games. Games are going to be the applications which hypervisors will be benchmarked against on the desktop, and I would give MS a solid edge on that.
        Michael Kelly
      • No it won't

        @Mike:

        Hyper-V isn't designed for games and probably never will be. I have never seen any other hypervisor benchmarked against games before, either. Right now, virtualization of video and audio resources is not a priority, hence the simplistic emulation of older cards. What virtualization is about is testing and resource consolidation, and is also used for some backwards compatibility of business apps. It was never designed to be a consumer solution.
        Joe_Raby
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate
      We've been hearing that Linux is going to steamroll Windows on the desktop for decades now and they're still at under 1% installed base. When is this "steamroll" going to happen, 2184? I don't think that will affect anyone reading these posts, since we'll be long gone.

      The only place a heavily-modified version of Linux is doing ok is on mobile devices. But Hyper-V or KVM have almost nothing to do with mobile devices. The vast majority of production servers are being run with Microsoft products. KVM may be technically great, but it will never surpass Hyper-V in actual installation numbers. It is the Betamax of server technology. The ecosystem always supports the highest installation numbers, not an "also-ran." Niche installs is the best they can hope for, at least until that steamroll happens in 2184.
      BillDem
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate

      Dayquil? derrrr duuhhhh doyyyy!
      LoverockDavidson_-24231404894599612871915491754222
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate As far as personal desktop virtualization goes, Qubes OS with its Xen hypervisor and Fedora 15 disposable VMs is light years ahead of Red Hat and KVM. Ahead in terms of architecture, implementation, usability and security.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
      • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

        @Rabid Howler Monkey
        +1.
        Ram U
      • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

        @Rabid Howler Monkey DTS does have a implicit point... somewhere. Many of these "new" features that Microsoft is touting for Windows 8 are simply available already in other products. A K-H gets excited about Hyper-V, yet he can do the same thing today with VirtualBox, including running multiple VMs, running headless, and using multiple screens - for free. He could also access USB devices over a network.

        Microsoft touted the ability to manage all of the current copying operations from one window - which can be done in Windows with TeraCopy already for free, and is already present in Linux's KDE desktop. It will offer something like an "app store", already present in Linux in the form of repositories being able to update all software on the system.
        Windows will be able to mount ISOs and virtual drives directly, something already present in Linux, and at least the ISO mounting is already possible using third party programs on Windows like Daemon Tools.
        The "portable image" feature to create a clone of your system onto a flash drive is already present in several Linux distros.
        In many ways, Microsoft seems to be playing catch-up with features I gained for free when I switched from Windows XP to openSUSE Linux in July 2010.

        Now I'm going to ask for the hundredth time - can we hold elections to elect a new Linux Advocate? I want to throw my hat in the ring as the Kinder, Gentler, Less Fanboy Candidate(tm)!
        jgm@...
      • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

        @Rabid Howler Monkey
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    • What do you mean they have no choice

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate

      Windows 7 is the fastest shipping OS in the world. Windows 8 is due to meet or exceed that.

      Choice: Brought to you by Microsoft
      Your Non Advocate
  • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

    In my opinion, Hyper-V should be implemented in a way that allows it to be the default boot configuration (untouchable host kernel?) with Windows 8 running as a hosted virtual machine, rather than the host operating system. This would allow those of us who support others to simply reset their VM when a user does something incredibly stupid to their OS. Even better would be a configuration which automatically resets their Win8 VM every time they start up the system. I know we can create a somewhat similar setup now, but it is a many step process rather than the default behavior. Plus, it seems wasteful to run Win8 to host Hyper-V which is then hosting Win8 for the user to use. Eliminate that first layer.
    BillDem
    • Easier said than done

      @BillDem

      That would mean setting up data and settings on a separate volume, and that is more problematic than it sounds on the surface. Especially when you consider the fact that many times it is the user settings that causes an issue and not the OS itself.
      Michael Kelly
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @BillDem +1. An elegant implementation of what Microsoft's discontinued Steady-State product was designed to do.

      Microsoft could also take Hyper-V and Windows 8 client integration a step further and implement additional features such as disposable VMs and security by isolation currently found in Qubes OS.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
    • You don't quite get it

      @BillDem

      The hypervisor is inserted between the hardware and OS. It is not a full host OS that virtualizes the hardware.
      Joe_Raby
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @BillDem
      You mean, like VMWare's ESX server? The one based on [ahem] linux?

      Why not go one better - a bare metal VM hypervisor built into BIOS?
      alan_r_cam
  • @Dietrich T. Schmitz * Your Linux Advocate

    I am Linux user and engineer for 10 years already! But reading your trolling is the most annoying thing ever!

    If you are not interested in IT, but just 'Linux trolling' - please do us a favour and stop commenting on IT-related stuff.

    Thank you!
    shoshonski
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @shoshonski
      Amen!
      Viper589
    • RE: Microsoft to add Hyper-V to client Windows 8, along with a cool power user feature

      @shoshonski
      +1
      Ram U