How to use Microsoft Virtual Machine Manager to manage Hyper-V virtual machines

Hyper-V based virtual machines can be made on just about any modern machine. However, centralization of your organization’s VMs is possible with Microsoft’s Virtual Machine Manager.

Image: artisteer, Getty Images / iStockphoto

Your organization has decided to virtualize all physical Windows servers. All capacity planning went smoothly, a new data center was purchased with newly stretched, high-density servers and existing physical servers were converted to the virtual hard disk (VHD) format and imported into hypervisors with a combination of Hyper-V Server and Windows Server.

SEE: Network administrators: a guide (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

You have been approached to manage the hardware resources on these devices and to perform patch management in addition to the usual server monitoring. But how? Does each server have to be touched remotely? That is a solution, but no. Should IT become PowerShell gurus to manage all these hosts and virtual guest machines (VMs)? There is a thought, but also none. In the spirit of working smarter, not harder, use Microsoft’s Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) – part of System Center – to centralize the management of hosts, guests, and resources used by each of them.

VMM, consisting of a server, database and library, works by cataloging all hosts and guest VMs and bringing them together via a network and storage structure to manage everything centrally. The VMM console is used as a window on the fabric, allowing IT to make all necessary changes, from simple delivery of new VMs to moving VMs across servers to adapting network services so that devices stay online and work correctly.

Recommended specifications

VMM server:

VMM database:

VMM library:

VMM console:

Supported operating systems:


SEE: 3 ways to improve the performance of virtual machines and maximize efficiency (TechRepublic)

Supported servers and virtual machines

Although it is a Microsoft product, VMM supports the management of ESXi and vCenter hosts and servers. This includes VMs running on services hosted by VMware, all directly managed from the VMM server to maintain your entire VM infrastructure from just one console window.

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