Both VMware and Microsoft have similar virtual machine live migration features that allow IT pros to move virtual machines -- that are running -- from one host to another, but that hasn't always been the case. VMware Inc., a very big name in virtualization, was first on the scene, debuting vMotion with GSX and vCenter in 2003. VMotion caused quite a stir in the industry and was seen by many as a turning point for virtualization.
It wasn't long before other vendors attempted to develop a VM live migration feature of their own. Microsoft responded with Quick Migration in its Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V release, but it fell a little short. Quick Migration allowed a similar ability to move VMs among hosts, but it required that the VM pause for a short time to perform the move. Microsoft took a major step toward matching vMotion by eliminating the need for this pause with Live Migration, which replaced Quick Migration in Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V R2.
Even though both vendors now offer the feature, there are still important (if small) feature and process differences. In this guide, we'll lay out how to use each live migration feature and explain the differences between Hyper-V Live Migration and vMotion.
1Get started with vMotion-
Understanding the basics of VMware vMotion
VMware vSphere vMotion moves running virtual machines from one ESX/ESXi host to another without stopping the VM's operations. There are some restrictions on vMotion, although VMware has pushed to open vMotion's possibilities as vSphere matures as a hypervisor platform for VM live migration.
VMware vMotion live migrates VMs between hosts. Evolving with vSphere, vMotion has gained a lot of capabilities, but it still has limitations. Continue Reading
2Uses for vMotion-
Putting VMware vMotion into motion
VMware vSphere vMotion enables Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS), which balances host utilization and supports scheduled maintenance. It also helps VMware Site Recovery Manager put VMs back into service when unexpected failures occur.
3Live Migration vs. vMotion-
Using and comparing Live Migration vs. vMotion
While Live Migration isn't the original, it's now competitive with VMware's vMotion. In fact, the latest version of Hyper-V Live Migration has even impressed some VMware loyalists. However, there are a few important differences you should know about.
Both VMware and Microsoft now offer a shared nothing VM migration feature. Find out how they stack up in this vMotion vs. Live Migration comparison. Continue Reading
VMware expert Mike Laverick takes Hyper-V Live Migration and System Center Virtual Machine Manager for a spin and likes what he sees, for the most part. Continue Reading
4Troubleshooting Live Migration-
What to do when Hyper-V Live Migration doesn't work
VM live migrations don't always work as expected. Compatibility problems or resource limitations can short-circuit Hyper-V Live Migration. Here are some tips and tricks to help you resolve problems and better leverage Hyper-V Live Migration.
Hyper-V Live Migration still has a few shortcomings, but these Windows PowerShell cmdlets can help you get around them. Continue Reading
This Hyper-V cluster guide provides solutions to common virtual machine cluster problems that plague complex virtual infrastructures. Continue Reading