Microsoft confirms its Client Hypervisor for Windows 8 – UPDATED

Posted by Kenneth van Surksum   |   Wednesday, September 7th, 2011   |  

In July last year, virtualization.info reported about the first details for the upcoming successor of Hyper-V called Hyper-V 3.0, at that time there were signals that the Hypervisor would be integrated in Windows 8 as well. In February this year, virtualization.info reported on the fact that more details about Microsoft’s upcoming client Hypervisor appeared online, pointing to patents which Microsoft claimed hinting at an upcoming client hypervisor. In June, Robert McLaws, got his hands on a leaked Windows 8 build (7989) which apparently provides the option to install Hyper-V as a feature on the upcoming OS on 64-bit versions of the Operating System.

In a blog post on the Building Windows 8 blog, Matthew John, Principal Lead Program Manager at Microsoft officially confirmed that the follow up of Windows 7, Windows 8 will contain a client hypervisor build on the Hyper-V technology already available in its Server OS. In the blog post Sinofsky links to a short video explaining.

Some other details revealed are that VM communications will be supported through wireless NICs using bridging functionality, a feature which currently works but isn’t supported in the current version.

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Update: In the meantime, Ben Armstrong Virtualization Program Manager at Microsoft confirmed that Hyper-V on windows 8 will also support hybernation/sleep. Hyper-V in Windows 8 will allow users to create VMs with 32 processors and 512GB RAM. Microsoft also introduces “Live Storage Move”, which allows you to move the VM’s storage from one local drive to another, to a USB stick, or to a remote file share without needing to stop your VM.

Although the blogpost mentions that this new feature is handy for people who are in the IT industry, it’s unlikely that this feature will be implemented just to satisfy the nees for this target group. Interesting will be to see how products like Med-V, which now provides managed VM’s for use within Virtual PC, will evolve. It will either be phased out, or will be “adjusted” to work with VMs within Hyper-V, providing some kind of management tool for the VMs running on top of the Windows 8 client, or perhaps even some kind o synchronization mechanism.

Then we still have the fact that Microsoft filed a patent in August last year called Windows Direct Experience. Windows Direct Experience would enable the OS to enter into a sandboxed mode to launch special purpose applications like Media Center. Basically this means that these applications are launched as VM instances. Also details appeared on how Microsoft will integrate its application virtualization solution App-V in Windows so that customers can run XP, Vista, 7 and Linux applications on the same environment.



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