EnergizeIT Load-Fest Tips: Microsoft Virtual Server under Windows Vista

A little old history...
Don't you love those mysterious invitations one receives? I got one in 1999 from the Xephon Director who managed some of the largest enterprise conferences in Europe. The result: I led 10 sessions on Windows 2000 over two days in London England in April 2000 targeted to 10,000 enterprises. What a diverse audience: from IBM to the Bank of Norway. I wrote ten books just for the event and post-event, the summaries of these ten became another book published for enterprises. In late 2000, I was invited by the Smartforce executive team to lead a series of 18 worldwide webcasts on Microsoft Windows technologies. These were targeted to their audience of nearly 5 million users in 2500 global enterprises. Then there's the invitation to speak at the World Computing Congress. Plus I spoke at the last Comdex Las Vegas in 2003 on Web Services and at the NPA AGM on Strategic Planning at Networld+Interop Las Vegas in 2005.

But nothing could match the fun I had at EnergizeIT in 2006. What a great event!

I already did a post on the community / citizenship topic and the great support for Neil Squire. By the way, I have an upcoming podcast with their renowned researcher and executive director, Dr. Gary Birch. And, I commented on the value CIPS received from the event. I give it a 5/5!  We definitely want to be involved next year when the event just gets bigger and better. Personally, I got great insight from the keynote by Mark Russinovich.

Time for the tip on loading VS under Vista...

One of the great benefits from EnergizeIT is that you get Windows Vista, Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1, Office 2007, plus other goodies. I loaded the latest public build of Vista (5384), followed by Office 2007 and Virtual Server.

Here are my quick tips:

When implementing the Vista Beta, plan for a clean install. I found it loaded fine on my Dell 810 however I'm spoiled with 2 GB of RAM, an 80GB HD, and a 128MB video card. If you do run into problems at this stage, it is likely due to a driver issue for your hardware providing you can meet the minimum hardware requirements well in hand.

Loading Virtual Server (VS) requires some pre-steps. You need IIS activated. You can do this under Control Panel / Programs / Windows Features. To keep it simple, I check off all the components under IIS. VS loads fine providing you activate IIS first! If you don't, you will receive a warning message about it though it still installs. You just won't have the Web-based Administration console called "Virtual Server Administration Website."

So with Vista IIS loaded, you install VS. Installation is quick and straight forward. You will have the "Microsoft Virtual Server" option under Start / All Programs. To launch the "Virtual Server Administration Website," where you can create your virtual machines, you need to bypass the default installation link and create your own setup. To do this, right-click on the IE7 icon, and start IE7 using "Run as administrator." Now enter this address: http://localhost/VirtualServer/vswebapp.exe
The default setup will use something like: http://dell/VirtualServer/vswebapp.exe?view=1 where "dell" is my machine name. You need to use "localhost" instead of your machine name.

One added note when working with virtual machines and you are using a physical device: make sure you map the physical device such as your DVD to your virtual machine. You can change your mappings under Virtual Machines / Configure using the Web administration console for VS that I got you to create...

I know you have some great tips or additions / comments to mine. Share them here or send me an e-mail and I can post them with you as the "Guest Blogger"!

Stephen Ibaraki, FCIPS, I.S.P.

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