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Hyper-V Server or Windows Server with Hyper-V? RRS feed

  • Question

  • We are looking at moving from XenServer to Hyper-V 2012R2.

    We will be managing from VMM. (Not set up yet)

    We have DataCenter licenses for the new servers.

    Should we be installing Hyper-V Server (StandAlone) or Windows DataCenter Server with Hyper-V Role?

    Thursday, February 20, 2014 7:27 PM

Answers

  • We are looking at moving from XenServer to Hyper-V 2012R2.

    We will be managing from VMM. (Not set up yet)

    We have DataCenter licenses for the new servers.

    Should we be installing Hyper-V Server (StandAlone) or Windows DataCenter Server with Hyper-V Role?

    Windows Server 2012 R2 for sure. You'll get a great benefit of a built-in licenses (but you'll still have to pay for CALs). See:

    Windows Server 2012 R2 Licensing

    https://www.microsoft.com/licensing/about-licensing/windowsserver2012-r2.aspx#tab=2

    Free Hyper-V makes sense for people who a) don't have pre-paid Windows yet b) have no plans to run Windows-based VMs for a while (are fine with 180 day trials, say for Test & Development) and c) are fine with a lack of a GUI-based management (can use third-party software or / and PowerShell).

    Hope this helped :)


    StarWind VSAN [Virtual SAN] clusters Hyper-V without SAS, Fibre Channel, SMB 3.0 or iSCSI, uses Ethernet to mirror internally mounted SATA disks between hosts.

    Thursday, February 20, 2014 7:56 PM
  • The first, best reason to install Datacenter edition when you have the license available is because it gives you access to Automatic Virtual Machine Activation and you can't get that any other way. For all other reasons, Hyper-V Server would function just as well in the scenario that you describe. Usability without a local GUI might, as previously mentioned, be an issue.

    However, the virtual machine guest licensing privileges are always part of your purchased license, regardless of the actual hypervisor or management operating system that you install -- even if it's a non-Microsoft hypervisor. You do not have to install Datacenter edition on the hardware in order to be able to use its guest licensing privileges.

    The Datacenter license does come with a single physical OSE license, but you're not required to use it; you just can't use it on any hardware separate from where its guest licenses are being employed.


    Eric Siron Altaro Hyper-V Blog
    I am an independent blog contributor, not an Altaro employee. I am solely responsible for the content of my posts.
    "Every relationship you have is in worse shape than you think."

    • Marked as answer by Steve BerkHolz Thursday, February 20, 2014 10:11 PM
    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:39 PM
  • You have a high quality answer already.

    I just wanted to add to the "It all comes down to your licensing model"

    If you are running a bunch of VDI VMs (client OS), then use the Free Hyper-V Server - the datacenter license gains you nothing from a licensing cost standpoint.

    If all of your VMs are Server, then the datacenter license gains you big through the virtual instance granting portion.


    Brian Ehlert
    http://ITProctology.blogspot.com
    Learn. Apply. Repeat.
    Disclaimer: Attempting change is of your own free will.

    • Marked as answer by Steve BerkHolz Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:28 PM
    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:16 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • We are looking at moving from XenServer to Hyper-V 2012R2.

    We will be managing from VMM. (Not set up yet)

    We have DataCenter licenses for the new servers.

    Should we be installing Hyper-V Server (StandAlone) or Windows DataCenter Server with Hyper-V Role?

    Windows Server 2012 R2 for sure. You'll get a great benefit of a built-in licenses (but you'll still have to pay for CALs). See:

    Windows Server 2012 R2 Licensing

    https://www.microsoft.com/licensing/about-licensing/windowsserver2012-r2.aspx#tab=2

    Free Hyper-V makes sense for people who a) don't have pre-paid Windows yet b) have no plans to run Windows-based VMs for a while (are fine with 180 day trials, say for Test & Development) and c) are fine with a lack of a GUI-based management (can use third-party software or / and PowerShell).

    Hope this helped :)


    StarWind VSAN [Virtual SAN] clusters Hyper-V without SAS, Fibre Channel, SMB 3.0 or iSCSI, uses Ethernet to mirror internally mounted SATA disks between hosts.

    Thursday, February 20, 2014 7:56 PM
  • You have a high quality answer already.

    I just wanted to add to the "It all comes down to your licensing model"

    If you are running a bunch of VDI VMs (client OS), then use the Free Hyper-V Server - the datacenter license gains you nothing from a licensing cost standpoint.

    If all of your VMs are Server, then the datacenter license gains you big through the virtual instance granting portion.


    Brian Ehlert
    http://ITProctology.blogspot.com
    Learn. Apply. Repeat.
    Disclaimer: Attempting change is of your own free will.

    • Marked as answer by Steve BerkHolz Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:28 PM
    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:16 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks,

    Yes, we have DataCenter licenses.

    From the responses, I assume VMM can manage either Stand Alone Hyper-V or Full server plus Hyper-V.

    Are there any performance or other reasons to use one or the other?

    We currently have 60 Server VMs over 3 Citrix XenServer hosts, but Citrix has been removing features with every new version. (Worked best before Citrix bought it)

    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:28 PM
  • The first, best reason to install Datacenter edition when you have the license available is because it gives you access to Automatic Virtual Machine Activation and you can't get that any other way. For all other reasons, Hyper-V Server would function just as well in the scenario that you describe. Usability without a local GUI might, as previously mentioned, be an issue.

    However, the virtual machine guest licensing privileges are always part of your purchased license, regardless of the actual hypervisor or management operating system that you install -- even if it's a non-Microsoft hypervisor. You do not have to install Datacenter edition on the hardware in order to be able to use its guest licensing privileges.

    The Datacenter license does come with a single physical OSE license, but you're not required to use it; you just can't use it on any hardware separate from where its guest licenses are being employed.


    Eric Siron Altaro Hyper-V Blog
    I am an independent blog contributor, not an Altaro employee. I am solely responsible for the content of my posts.
    "Every relationship you have is in worse shape than you think."

    • Marked as answer by Steve BerkHolz Thursday, February 20, 2014 10:11 PM
    Thursday, February 20, 2014 9:39 PM