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System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 R2 (beta) Released and Testing it Already

SCVMM 2008 R2 Beta has been released last week to the public (to access the bits you have to register on Connect at this link). This new version of the platform comes with a lot of interesting improvements that are worthwhile, specially if you have on your hands a dynamic datacenter with a lot of virtual machines, shared storage and Hyper-V clustering. As you probably know, Live Migration (check this link for more info and documentation) is a new feature that is included within Windows Server 2008 R2 and Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 (both of them are in Beta right now), that gives you a lot of help making your infrastructure more agile and dynamic by letting you to move a running virtual machines between different Hyper-V hosts without any downtime. With SCVMM 2008 R2 you will be able to execute those migrations directly from the VMM console. You will also be able to hot addition for VHDs; support for new hardware scenarios, etc etc. For more information about new features of SCVMM 2008 R2 check MVUG Blog, and this post: What’s New in VMM 2008 R2 Beta System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 (VMM) is a comprehensive management solution for managing virtualized infrastructure running on Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V, Virtual Server 2005 R2 and VMware ESX through Virtual Center.  Recently, Windows Server 2008 R2 Beta was released which included significant feature improvements to Hyper-V—the underlying hypervisor platform.  A […]

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Step-by-Step: Adding Hyper-V Integration Components to Windows PE using WAIK 2.0 Tools

For those that have been using Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) 2.0 released recently (download link here) or using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1, that works only with WAIK 2.0 (check these articles of mine about MDT 2010: Post I, Post II and Post III); maybe you’ve noticed that the management tools that were included with WAIK 1.1 (and 1.0) disappeared in this new version. These tools were consolidated by one command-line: DISM.exe (more info on Post I about MDT 2010). Meaning that the Windows PE management (like customizing, adding drivers or inserting Hyper-V integration components to those images) that you executed on previous versions of WAIK, has significant changes. On this post we’ll be reviewing how to add the Hyper-V Integration Components to a Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE) image, including the new Windows PE 3.0. Why should I need to add the Hyper-V Integration Components to Windows PE? The Integration Components of Hyper-V are a set of drivers that are a significant performance change that you can apply to virtual machines for them to be able to install synthetic devices instead of emulated devices. Some of the drivers that are installed using the Integration Components are: Video driver, network driver (with this you avoid using Hyper-V’s Legacy Network adapter), storage driver, VMBUS (transport for synthetic devices), time sync (time synchronization with the host), etc. Adding Hyper-V Integration Components  As I mentioned before, I prepared a set of […]

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Free eBook from this Month: Windows Vista Resource Kit

Microsoft Press keeps celebrating their 25th anniversary, that’s why you continue to keep getting this free eBooks all the time. This time you get the chance to get a free book related to desktop environments: Windows Vista Resource Kit, 2nd Edition On this book you’ll find: Windows Vista Deployment Desktop Management Desktop Maintenance All you need to know about Networking on Windows Vista Troubleshooting It’s quite interesting actually, on this book you’ll find several topics that can be quite useful as an IT Pro or a common user: Regarding to Vista Deployment you can find everything you need to know about deployments using Windows Deployment Services (WDS) or Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT), preparing Windows PE boot environment, etc. Also take a look at the networking section that will explain the improvements that were made on this OS (firewall, IPSec, etc); troubleshooting hardware, devices and common errors. Remember that these free eBooks will be available for a short period of time, so don’t waste any more time and get it! Adding now another free eBook: Introducing Microsoft SQL Server 2008. Enjoy! Cheers

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WIM2VHD: Converting WIM files to VHD files

MSDN Code Gallery just released a first version for a very promising tool: WIM2VHD. With this you can take a raw WIM file (like the ones included inside any Windows 7 or Windows 2008 R2) or a custom WIM (like a captured and customized image) and converted directly to a VHD that you can boot directly using Virtual PC, Virtual Server or Hyper-V. Take a look at this link: Windows(R) Image to Virtual Hard Disk (WIM2VHD) Converter Introduction The Windows(R) Image to Virtual Hard Disk (WIM2VHD) command-line tool allows you to create sysprepped VHD images from any Windows 7 installation source. VHDs created by WIM2VHD will boot directly to the Out Of Box Experience, ready for your first-use customizations. You can also automate the OOBE by supplying your own unattend.xml file, making the possibilities limitless. Fresh squeezed, organically grown, free-range VHDs – just like Mom used to make – that work with Virtual PC, Virtual Server, Microsoft Hyper-V, and Windows 7’s new Native VHD-Boot functionality! Requirements A computer running one of the following Windows operating systems: – Windows 7 – Windows Server 2008 R2 – Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V RTM enabled (x64 only) The Windows 7 Beta Automated Installation Kit (AIK) or Windows OEM Pre-Installation Kit (OPK) installed. A Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2 installation source, or another Windows image captured to a .WIM file. How to Use It Create a Windows Server 2008 R2 Server Standard […]

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Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part III

IMPORTANT: Updated versions from this series using Windows 7 + Microsoft Office 2010 in automated deployment with MDT 2010 can be found here: Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part I Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part II Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part III   This is going to be the last part (at least for now) for this step-by-step guide for customizing and deploying Windows 7 images with MDT 2010. On the previous posts we’ve learned how to run the firsts configurations on MDT, adding operating system files and creating a task sequence for the reference image (Part I); and also adding Office 2007 to the reference image and making it a silent installation (Part II). The third post it’s going to be just to deploy the reference and customized image, and then capture it into a .wim file, that we can later deploy using MDT or add it to Windows Deployment Services (WDS). Deploying Reference Image Since we already have our boot environments, ISO and WIM files; and that we have the Windows Deployment Services role installed, I’ll start using it: I’m going to add the LTI boot image to WDS that will let me create and capture the reference image. Note: You can also use the ISO file too boot from a CD […]

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Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part II

IMPORTANT: Updated versions from this series using Windows 7 + Microsoft Office 2010 in automated deployment with MDT 2010 can be found here: Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part I Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part II Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part III On the first post of this series, we’ve managed to install MDT 2010 and its requirements, prepare distribution share and task sequence, add Windows 7 image to use it as reference and create the deployment point. We are now going to add Office 2007 as an application to be deployed included in the OS image and complete the environment to generate the reference image. The process of adding an application like Office 2007 it is quite simple, the only trick is to get the application to install silently (or unattended) without requiring for user intervention , we’ll see how that works. Adding Applications to MDT 2010: Office 2007 We’ll add the application using also a simple wizard, but the interesting part comes when you get the chance to modify default settings on the Office 2007 package: 1. “Deployment Workbench” > “Distribution Share” > “Applications” > “New”. 2. Select “Application with source files”. 3. Complete the data about the application. 4. Select the “Source Directory”. Since I have it on the hard drive, […]

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Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part I

IMPORTANT: Updated versions from this series using Windows 7 + Microsoft Office 2010 in automated deployment with MDT 2010 can be found here: Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part I Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part II Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part III Microsoft Deployment Toolkit team released the first beta of their next version: Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1 (you can access to the Beta program from Microsoft Connect and download the build). This new version includes several improvements, but perhaps the most important ones are related to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 compatibility. Some of the New Features Support for deploying: Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Hard Link Migrations using USMT 4 (User Migration Toolkit). Integration with new Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) 2.0 toolset such as BCDBOOT and Windows PE 3.0. DISM tool (Dism.exe) included with WAIK 2.0 replace three other tools on previous version: Pkgmgr.exe (Package Manager), Intlcfg.exe (Internal Settings Configuration Tool) and PEimg.exe (WindowsPE Command Line tool ). If you are planning to implement Windows 7 on your environment (check this link about the review I made about Windows 7 functionality) or you want to start to get to know Microsoft Deployment Toolkit in this new version; I’ve prepared this step-by-step guides that will cover […]

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