After much maligning of VMware's memory overcommit functionality, Microsoft promised to deliver a comparable feature in an upcoming release of Hyper-V.
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The new Dynamic Memory feature in Hyper-V R2 Service Pack 1 (SP1) is a memory management technique that Microsoft said will deliver greater virtual machine (VM) density while maintaining predictable performance.
Microsoft did not provide many details about the specific memory management techniques used by Dynamic Memory. But in an early blog post cached by virtualization.info, Microsoft employee James O'Neill, quoted as an IT pro evangelist on Microsoft's U.K. site, suggested that Dynamic Memory is a form of memory ballooning, and not akin to VMware's Transparent Page Sharing (TPS).
O'Neill subsequently took down his explanation of Dynamic Memory. "I posted an explanation here of what it was and was not, and in doing so I got some things wrong," O'Neill wrote. "I've taken that text down, and when I've got my facts right, I'll put a new post up."
Observers expect the Dynamic Memory feature to be comparable to VMware's memory overcommit.
"I don't know if it's going to be implemented the same way, but it's the same premise: giving you more memory to work with," said Rob McShinsky, senior systems engineer at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, a Hyper-V shop in Lebanon, N.H.
Dynamic Memory will enable admins to run more virtual machines (VMs) per host, but it remains to be seen how that will affect VM performance, McShinsky said. It's not a huge feature, but it does help Microsoft level the playing field against VMware, he added.
Hyper-V R2 became generally available in the fall. Microsoft did not announce a release date for Hyper-V R2 SP1, but observers expect it as soon as the fourth quarter of 2010.Veeam automates backup testing for virtual machines
VMware administrators who use Veeam Software's Backup and Replication will soon be able to test their backups automatically with Veeam's SureBackup functionality. The functionality should help organizations comply with data recovery mandates in regulations such as HIPAA and SOX, the company said.
Like a lot of backup software focused on virtual environments, Veeam backs up virtual machines by taking a crash-consistent snapshot. However, just because an image-based backup completes does not mean that the virtual machine can be successfully brought back. SureBackup eliminates that concern by verifying that the VM can be mounted and restarted with no application corruption or data loss. It ensures recoverability with technology that allows the virtual machine to run on an ESX host directly from a compressed, deduplicated backup file.
SureBackup will support both Windows and Linux guests, and will be available in June as part of Veeam Backup and Replication 5.0.Akorri updates BalancePoint
Virtual infrastructure performance management software vendor Akorri Inc. has added support for new storage arrays in its BalancePoint suite. Specifically, Akorri now supports IBM's XIV Storage, Virtual I/O Server (VIOS) and AIX LPARs, plus Oracle
Automatic Storage Management (ASM). Also included in the latest release are platform-specific reports for quicker troubleshooting, and improved ease of use with simplified installation, quicker navigation and streamlined reporting, the company said.
Site Editor Colin Steele contributed to this report.