With VMworld coming up, I was wondering…
How do you treat your Virtual Machines? I mean, you have an OS, you have applications. For each of these guests, you have to install an OS and application, which you have to configure. Once they are up and running, you have to patch them, you have to maintain them, you have to monitor them, and back them up. Eventually, you have to retire them. Is this any different than how you manage your physical environments?
What tools do you use for this? For your Windows Operating Systems, do you use System Center Configuration Manager for the OS installation and maintenance processes, and System Center Operations Manager for the Monitoring of the Operating Systems and the Applications? Do you leverage System Center Data Protection Manager for Backups? If you are using these tools, are you leveraging the System Center Suites?
If you are using some of these tools for your Virtual Machines, you can get the most for your System Center Dollar, by using the Server Management Suite Datacenter bundle (SMSD). This bundle combines System Center Operations Manager, System Center Configuration Manager, System Center Data Protection Manager and System Center Virtual Machine Manager into one easy to acquire and license bundle. You license SMSD for the physical machine, and with the Datacenter bundle (SMSD), you get to run these products on all of the Operating System Environments on that box. Just like Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter, you license the physical box and get unlimited Virtual Machines, you get the same for the management tools. We have an SMSE if you are running solely 4 Virtual Machines (just like Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise).
This is a tremendous value, and it can really save money on your Virtual Machine management because you only need to buy one thing and you get all of the management benefits for your Virtualized Environment that work for the entire stack, and all of your environment ie: the physical systems, the virtual systems, the underlying OS, the Virtualization Layer, as well as the Applications running inside of the Virtual Machines.