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Windows 2008 Hyper V R2  - physical disk questions

Posted on 2011-03-25
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In 2008 HyperV R2 I can add a physical disk to a VM.  

1) Are there any size limitations on that versus a regular VHD e.g. what is the max size of a regular VHD versus a physical disk VHD?

2) When I add the physical disk as a VHD and I run Windows 2008 R2 Server backup will it also backup the physical disk VHD just as it does regular VHDs? For example if I have 4 VM's on a host with 4 VHD's attached to them and I run Server 2008 R2 backup I will create a complete duplicate of the host that in theory I can restore to a different server if necessary.  Does this still work if one of the VHD's attached to one of the VM's is 'physical disk'

I believe the other terminology for physical disk is pass-through
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Question by:lineonecorp
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Erik Pitti earned 200 total points
ID: 35224115
1 VHD limit is ~2TB (2040GB), Physical disk attached to VM =No size limit other than what is supported by the guest operating system

Source:
Technet: Hyper-V: Planning:  Planning for Disks and Storage
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd183729(WS.10).aspx
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by:lineonecorp
ID: 35224503
Thanks for the info and the link. What about my second question? Any insight into it?
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by:lineonecorp
ID: 35292386
Still on this?
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by:lineonecorp
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Still responding?
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by:Svet Paperov
Svet Paperov earned 100 total points
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You have two ways to attach a physical disk to a virtual machine:  using pass-through disk or, using iSCSI initiator if your disks are on iSCSI NAS. In both cases you will not be limited by the VHD maximum size of 2TB.

Regarding the backup, you cannot use a backup tool on the Hyper-V host to backup a pass-through disk because it is presented as off-line there. Same story with iSCSI attached disk. So, your backup need to be done on the virtual machine.
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by:Erik Pitti
Erik Pitti earned 200 total points
ID: 35441137
Physical disks are as @spaperov said presented as offline to the host, whereas VHD's are files that exist on the host's active drive. If you have a VM with physical disks in a pass-thru, you must back up that VM using the backup agent installed on that VM. The host's backup will get everything except the pass-thru disk.
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