Microsoft Virtual Server 2004 changes name in Virtual Server 2005

Because of the naming-convention change first unveiled by Bob Muglia at MMS 2004, the Virtual Server product previously tagged as ‘2004’, is now referred to as Virtual Server 2005. The first beta of Virtual Server 2004 released to testers last year was v1.1.321, here’s a quick preview of one of the first builds under the 2005 name, v1.1.416.

Virtual Server is Microsoft?s virtual machine (VM) solution that enables Windows servers to run multiple operating systems concurrently. Virtual Server enables simplified application migration, flexible server consolidation, and automated rapid deployment. Virtual Server represents a key deliverable on the Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI) roadmap.

Overview of Changes:

– Security enhancements – Virtual Server now uses file system access control lists (ACLs) to manage access to virtual machines, virtual disks, and virtual networks.

– SCSI support – Small computer system interface (SCSI) support is now enabled for four buses with seven devices per bus, and each SCSI drive can be up to 2 terabytes in size.

– Improved large memory support – Virtual Server now includes improved support for running large numbers of virtual machines on physical computers that have up to 64 gigabytes (GB) of memory, provided Physical Address Extension (PAE) is enabled on the host operating system.

– Global Resource Allocation Page – Virtual Server now includes a Global Resource Allocation Page providing all virtual machine resource allocation settings on a single page.

– Globalization – Virtual Server now supports host operating systems that use double-byte characters.

– Named Password Authority service – Virtual Server now includes a Named Password Authority service. This supports automatic virtual machine startup because you can specify the logon credentials for a virtual machine.

– Clustering support – Clustering is now enabled for simple failover between two virtual machines.

*Not all of these features/changes are exclusive to the ‘2005’ build, some were present in previous betas.

Prices for the retail version of Virtual Server 2005 have not been unveiled yet, however Microsoft is promising low prices. According to Bob Muglia, senior vice president for Microsoft’s Windows Server Division, “Virtual Server will be the lowest cost way of doing this in the industry”.

Go to Winbeta (my news source) website to see many screenshots!