“Who’s using Microsoft Virtual Server or any Microsoft platform for virtualization?” That question has been asked in at least one session of the many conferences I’ve covered this year, and every time one lone user has raised his hand. I’ve talked to those users, and every one only uses Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2 for a few virtual machines.
By contrast, almost every hand goes up when asked, “Who’s using VMware?” The others usually say they’re trying out Xen variants.
Rather than making me play “find the user in the haystack,” I asked SearchServerVirtualization.com’s readers — all IT professionals — to write to me about their Virtual Server experiences.
About a dozen IT managers responded. For the most part, IT managers are running Microsoft Virtual Server in a limited way, just in a few VMs. Two consultants had clients using VS in production.
Most are using VS for testing and evaluation of products and not in production. Other than that, some interesting uses for Virtual Server were cited, including using virtualization and VS to run old 32-bit operating systms and applications on 64-bit hardware; providing an environment for quicker, less hardware-bound disaster recovery; using VS to run Linux-based spam filters.
Some had tried VS and turned away from it. One said that “Microsoft is woefully out of touch in not providing USB support for their virtual technology. VMWare Workstation…provides all the connectors and hookups I need.” Another said that getting support from Microsoft is a “chore”. Also, he said, the Virtual Server Web interface didn’t work well, Microsoft didnt’ make release 2 of VS a free update “as they had promised” and it ran slower than VMware GSX Server.
We’ll be posting more responses in the comments for this post. I’d also like to hear more Virtual Server stories, either in comments below or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sorry, folks, the coffee cards have all been taken.
Looking for more about Virtual Server’s pros and Cons? I ran into an interesting conversation on Andrew Connell’s blog, where readers responded to his plea for their experiences with VMware versus Microsoft virtualization products.