Planning, Implementing and Supporting SQL Server Virtualization with Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Live Migration

This whitepaper provides prescriptive guidance and detailed steps for planning and implementing SQL Server virtualization with Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Live Migration. The document also communicates strategies for managing a SQL Server virtual environment with SQL Server native capabilities and System Center products such as Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) 2008 R2, Configuration Manager 2007 R2, Operations Manager 2007 R2 and Data Protection Manager 2010.

This document is organized into four sections to deliver a straightforward and un-daunting process for planning, implementing and managing your SQL Server virtualization efforts. The document opens with a high level introduction that will acquaint you with the technologies and concepts involved in planning, implementing and managing SQL Server virtualization. The document then expands on these technologies by discussing how to use each capability to simplify your SQL Server virtualization efforts. The four sections include:

    • Part 1 Planning: This section of the document describes the steps on how to effectively plan a SQL Server virtualization strategy by first communicating how to conduct a discovery of SQL Server computers, instances, and databases in your network. It then covers key considerations that will help you select the most appropriate Hyper-V hardware to support your SQL Server virtualization efforts.
    • Part 2 Implementation: In this section you will find step-by-step procedures on how to use the Physical-to-Virtual (P2V) tool to conduct a migration of a SQL Server physical server to a virtual server. Steps on how to create a new SQL Server virtual machine from the ground-up are also described in Part 2.
    • Part 3 High Availability and Live Migration: Achieving high availability within your SQL Server virtual environment with Live Migration is the focus of Part 3. Step-by-step procedures for implementing Live Migration are covered in this section.
    • Part 4 Ongoing Operations and Support: The final section of the document discusses several strategies that will help you manage your SQL Server virtual environment. Part 4 also includes an overview of how to use System Center Operations Manager to proactively monitor and protect your SQL Server virtual environment.

Some of the technologies used in this white paper are:

    • SQL Server 2008 R2 - SQL Server 2008 R2 delivers several breakthrough capabilities that will enable your organization to scale database operations with confidence, improve IT and developer efficiency, and enable highly scalable and well managed Business Intelligence on a self-service basis for your users. (
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 - Windows Server 2008 R2 builds on the foundation of Windows Server 2008 and delivers valuable new functionality and powerful improvements to the core Windows Server operating system to help organizations of all sizes increase control, availability, and flexibility for their changing business needs. New Web tools, virtualization technologies, scalability enhancements, and management utilities help save time, reduce costs, and provide a solid foundation for your information technology (IT) infrastructure. (
    • Hyper-V - With Hyper-V, it's easier than ever to take advantage of the cost savings of
      virtualization through Windows Server 2008 R2. Optimize your server hardware investments by consolidating multiple server roles as separate virtual machines running on a single physical machine, efficiently run multiple different operating systems in parallel, on a single server, and fully leverage the power of x64 computing. (
    • Live Migration - Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V provides greater flexibility with Live Migration. Live Migration is integrated with Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2. With Hyper-V Live Migration, you can move running virtual machines (VMs) from one Hyper-V physical host to another, without any disruption or perceived loss of service. IT professionals increasingly look to Live Migration to create a dynamic and flexible IT environment that responds to emerging business needs. Live migration provides the core technology required for dynamic load balancing, VM placement, high availability for virtualized workloads during physical computer maintenance, and reduced data center power consumption. (
    • System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) R2 - System Center Virtual Machine Manager is a comprehensive heterogeneous management solution for the virtualized data center. Virtual Machine Manager enables increased physical server utilization, centralized management of virtual machine infrastructure, and rapid provisioning of new virtual machines by the administrator and authorized end users. Virtual Machine Manager provides the best solution for leveraging existing IT administrative skills and processes for managing the virtual and physical environment. (
    • System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 - System Center Operations Manager provides end-to-end service management that is easy to customize and extend for improved service levels across your IT environment. This enables Operations and IT Management teams to identify and resolve issues affecting the health of distributed IT services. End-to-end Service Management is not restricted to Microsoft-based environments. Support for Web Servers for Management (WS-Management), Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP), and partner solutions allow for non-Microsoft systems and hardware to be included in service monitoring within Operations Manager 2007. (
    • Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager 2010 - (DPM) provides continuous data protection for virtual machines hosted on servers running Microsoft’s Hyper-V. This protection includes online backup of supported guest virtual machines hosted on clustered or standalone systems; protection of virtual machines during the Live Migration process; and, item level recovery from host-level backup. DPM 2010 offers disk-to-disk, disk-to-tape, and disk-to-disk-to-tape technologies; all of which maintain the business value of a virtualized infrastructure by ensuring that it is better protected and always available. (

The whitepaper can be downloaded from the Microsoft Download Center “Planning, Implementing and Supporting SQL Server Virtualization with Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Live Migration

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