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Microsoft Small Business Server 2011 in a Virtualized Enviroment

What are the pro's and con's to placing SBS 2011 in a Virtlized enviroment.
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technolutions
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technolutions
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rindiCommented:
You can run it on the same hardware as other servers, that saves you the number of servers. If there is an issue with the server hardware the VM runs on, you can just copy the VM files to another host and run the server there, you don't have any driver problems like you would when you restore an image backup to other hardware.

The con is that you need more powerful hardware, particularly if you are using a 2008 server as host. It needs to be able to run both OS's at the same time.
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technolutionsAuthor Commented:
How would you do SBS Backup bare metal recovery as external hard drives uses USB?
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Gary ColtharpSr. Systems EngineerCommented:
Pros:
Hardware independent, ability to snapshot virgin config and at any time, portability to a new virtualized hardware platform.

Cons:
Performance, backup devices not directly supported.

Performance is the big thing here. SBS is a busy server, doing lots of things in a small package. If you are virtualizing, you are probably not an SBS candidate anyway.

As for the bare metal recovery, you would be better served using VMWare vSphere snapshots on a daily basis. Restores to that exact point in time in minutes.
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rindiCommented:
I can't talk about m$'s Hyper-V as I don't use it, but in VMware vSphere Hypervisor you can access USB devices within your VM. So it should be possible to use the SBS2011 backup there.
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Gary ColtharpSr. Systems EngineerCommented:
Ah...well, USB is one thing...I  was talking about real backup devices. :)
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technolutionsAuthor Commented:
The bare metal recovery in SBS 2011 is such a great tool to give up.  a 4 hour recovery.  Thought on ulternatives other than DPM?
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I know many consultants who nowadays ONLY virtualize SBS.  The performance hit is relatively minor given the capabilities of the hardware today.

Further, few if any consultants I know in the New York City area use "real backup devices" (which I assume you mean tape).  Most use BDR devices that don't care if it's virtualized and usually use Virtualization themselves.  Such devices aren't much more than tape and provide a near instant recovery and some provide off-site backups as well.

You can still use SBS backup, but it's to a network drive not directly to disk (assuming you are using Hyper-V as the host OS).  The network disk can be a USB drive shared off another computer.

One other thing - about the only thing that's a potential significant problem depending on the client in my experience - you CANNOT use fax services - at least with Hyper-V (I don't know about VMWare/Xen) because you can't pass through a fax card.  The recommended solution I hear is to use a fax service instead.
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