Getting back to how to use SCVMM, I'll now walk you through one of the ways to create a Virtual Machine (VM) on a host - I'll use one the simplest ways, there are lots of other options.
BTW, Are those of you not on the SCVMM beta finding this series useful? I intended to walk through the basics of SCVMM with screen shots for those of you who don’t have access to test, dev or Virtual Server resources or just don’t have the time to evaluate – I guess I should have mentioned this in part one! I hope this series will give you a flavour of the product at this stage of the beta program.
You will be asked when you select "Create New Virtual Machine" from the MMC console, to enter source information - as you can see in the first screen shot. I selected one of the default options which is "Blank Small - Disk" as shown in the second screen shot (I hope the name is self explanatory!) . “Blank Disk – Small” and “Blank Disk – Large” are the system supplied defaults, you can also create a new VM from a Virtual Machine or from a template (I'll cover these in another post).
You then specify the VM identity information, such as the VM name (which isn't the hostname in my case but can be if you so desire – this could be a crucial decision point so consider carefully), and any description details as shown in the next picture.
The configure hardware is the most complex screen to date, in here you get to specify hardware details such as:
· Memory amount
· Floppy drive
· DVD drives
· Network Adapters
· Resource allocation
· BUS configuration
I used the defaults expect for when I changed the default memory from 512MB to 256MB, selected a SCSI VHD (press the "create new SCSI VHD" button) and browse to the location of the "Blank Small - Disk".
I also assigned an ISO file (this is the installation media for the desired Operating System), which I had already made available in the SCVMM library (again another area I’ll have to talk about later) to be attached to the DVD drive, as shown in the next shot. I could have selected that the DVD was attached to the physical DVD in the server if I wanted to load an Operating System that way. Using an ISO image is in my opinion preferable as these can be maintained centrally, we will talk about the other 'template' options another day.
When finished the next screen will ask you to place the VM either on a host or in the library (I've not shown this screen - as those are the only two options).
I chose to place the VM on a host for immediate deployment (if you select library the VM will be created but not deployed), the next screen allows you to select the preferred host for deployment based on a star rating (each host is rated out of 5), this is one of the best features of SCVMM in my opinion as it easily allows you to visually identify and place a VM, the rationale behind the stars will be explained in a later post (I know I keep saying that!). I selected the second one in the list, it has an equal rating to the first but the second one is physically closer to me (some things you just have to know) - that was my non technical reason for deploying on that server.
The next screen asks you where on the host you wish to save the Virtual Hard Disk (VHD) file or VM you have just created. Again to save space I won’t show this screen. If the host has multiple drives you can consider placing each VM on a separate spindle for performance or grouped if isolation is a consideration. You may even have different types of disk attached to the host giving different performance or SLA characteristics.
The final screen gives you a summary, when you click finish the VM will be created on the specified host.
In the next post (Part 10, unless I get distracted) I will show you how to remotely manage the VM from within SCVMM