Microsoft Hyper-v pluses and minuses
Updated March 23, 2022
Microsoft Hyper-v pluses and minuses
Score 7 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with Hyper-V
Hyper-V is used in our environment for test and development environments as well as VDI infrastructure and WDS image maintenance. Hyper-V is used as a lower-cost alternative to VMWare that can be installed and used on our existing Windows infrastructure. The infrastructure is used primarily by our development team.
- Lower cost
- Virtualization of Windows servers
- VDI infrastructure of Windows desktop
- Add-on tools
- Flexible, able to handle multiple workloads.
- It has compatibility with Windows.
- Cost of licensing the product in comparison to other alternatives.
- Setup is sometimes confusing and VMware knowledge does not always translate well.
Hyper-V performs very well in environment running windows operating systems and performs well under various workloads. The replication and recovery features of hyper-v work well but lack some of usability of tools such as Zerto, VMware replication and site Recovery Manager to perform tasks such as disaster recover testing. The user interface of hyper-v combined with Microsoft failover clustering can be very confusing and difficult to validate. this can cause unintended outages due to misconfigure items such as cluster-aware storage.
Do you think Hyper-V delivers good value for the price?
Are you happy with Hyper-V's feature set?
Did Hyper-V live up to sales and marketing promises?
Did implementation of Hyper-V go as expected?
Would you buy Hyper-V again?
Hyper-V is well suited for virtualization of Windows Server workloads as well as virtual desktop infrastructure. It also works well for building of development and test environments at a lower cost. Hyper-V is less appropriate for environments running multiple operating systems including linux and Apple OSx.
Hyper-V Feature Ratings
10 - My current environment is used for testing of windows patching and other Windows specific items. Hyper-v is also used for creation and maintenance of WDS images for desktop deployment. My past employer used Hyper-v for production and near production environments with offsite replication and a 2 node cluster.
2 - People who manage Hyper-v will need a wide array of knowledge in multipl IT areas such as storage, networking, virtualization, operating systems, Windows clustering, security principles and other Widows specific technology. so, the best person would be someone with a broad array of knowledge in multiple disciplines with a firm understanding of virtualization.
- pre-production testing
- need for "cheap" virtualization
- easy deployment
Although Hyper-v maintains most of the features of VMWare and is capable of running the workload, the performance of the servers did not seem as fast and would require a complete rebuild of the environment and retraining of our frontline support staff as well as back end management staff.
Evaluating Hyper-V and Competitors
No - We evaluate several alternatives to hyper-v including MS virtual desktop, open source virtualization tools and VMWare
- Product Usability
- Prior Experience with the Product
Hyper-v was used in a test environment by my second employer and was selected primarily due to the cost of VMWare. We were able to use virtualization to spin up test environments or near production environments without the need to purchase very expensive VMWare liceses as used in production while maintaining most of the features and usability.
The main issue that I had was with learning how to enable features and to configure the environment with high availability enabled. I found that, where VMware is very intuitive via VCenter and clustering, the Hyper-v interface did not always perform in the way that it should. this ultimately resulted in an outage in that environment.
initial configuration of hyper-v is intuitive to anyone familiar with windows and roles for basic items like single server deployments, storage and basic networking. the majority of the problems were with implementing advanced features like high availability and more complex networking. There is a lot of documentation on how to do it but it is not seamless, even to experienced virtualization professionals.
Change management was minimal - Due to the learning curve of Hyper-v in a high availabilty environment, I discovered the importance of change management when performing tasks such as server migrations and failovers as opposed to how it is done in a VMWare environment. This was learned the hard way due to an outage caused by a failed server migration within the same cluster.
The largest reason for this rating is due to the Microsoft pay for support model. If the user has an active support agreement with microsoft then the support is good with timely responses and support personnel who will work the problems to completion. The knowledge bases are very large and difficult to search. There are a large number of resources available. Microsoft licensing models make it difficult to properly license environments.
Problems left unsolved
Not kept informed
Difficult to get immediate help
Need to explain problems multiple times
Support doesn't seem to care
Slow Initial Response
Our Support was through Microsoft Volume licensing and was running on Microsoft Windows Server Datacenter. This gave us premium support for the Windows feature set including Hyper-v.
For a user who is familiar with VMWare and other virtualization products, the concept are easily understood. But, the methods to apply that knowledge are not always apparent to a new user. Items such as setting up clusters and high availability as well as replication are fairly easy but may require a little reading to to discover "the Microsoft way".
Like to use
Easy to use
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
Not well integrated
Lots to learn