Microsoft vNext confirmed to be Virtual Server R2 SP1

Microsoft has confirmed me that the upcoming vNext reported for the first time by Steven Bink at the end of 2005, has finally been named Virtual Server 2005 R2 Service Pack 1, as I speculated just yesterday.

It will be a free update for R2 customers, featuring:

  • Intel Virtualization Technology and AMD I/O Virtualization Technology CPUs support
    This won’t further improve performances of Windows guest OS but will improve other OSes performances.
  • Windows Server 2003 Volume Shadow Service (VSS) support
    Contrary to what I reported before this feature will permit virtual machines live backup.

The beta program will start 2Q06 with RTM expected within 6-8 months, depending on customers feedbacks on stability.