Tuesday, December 8, 2015

How to manage free Hyper-V Server and Windows Server Core

Microsoft released Windows Server 2016 TP4, making lots of exciting new features available to the public. How to access all the different versions of free Hyper-V Server and Windows Server Core if you need to maintain older versions on site? Managing everything from a command line is very time-consuming.

The easiest way to manage multiple versions of Hyper-V is to use vtUtilities.

vtUtilities support multiple versions of Windows Server which means you can run WinServ 2016 TP3, WinServ 2008/2008R2, WinServ 2012/2012R2 side by side.

One of the greatest  advantages of vtUtilities is that you can manage Windows Server 2008R2/2012R2 as well as Windows Server 2016 (now available as Technical Preview) from Windows 10 as well as from Windows 7 and Windows 8. Please note, what Windows Server 2016 is still under development and thus technical support is not available for this version of Windows.

Here are configurations supported by vtUtilities :

Hypervisor version                          Windows version

WinServ 8R2                                    Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1
WinServ 2012                                   Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 10
WinServ 2012R2                              Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 10
WinServ 2016TP4                            Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 10

vtUtilities present a number of capabilities what go far beyond the basic maintenance tasks such as creating or removing virtual machines and managing them locally and/or remotely. 

The tool offers a unified  GUI console that provides centralized administration of Hyper-V hosts, virtual networks & clusters and can replace such tools as Hyper-V Manager, Failover Cluster Manager, PowerShell and RSAT.

vtUtilities can be installed locally on Hyper-V host allowing to troubleshoot and fix network connections and related problems what cannot be resolved via remote management.

vtUtilities designed to  provide the GUI for 

  • Replication, including support for extended replica
  • Guest migration
  • VHDX
  • Virtual Fibre Channel Adapters
  • Virtual Network Management ( including the management of virtual connections and bindings)
  • Advanced Virtual Switch Management (including port-level access control)
  • File system views and operations
  • Guest configuration management (including support for Gen 2 virtual machines)
  • Server manager view
  • New virtual machine wizard, Import virtual machine wizard
  • Hyper-V settings management
  • Diagnostic and troubleshooting (including real-time performance monitoring of host and guesta, access to Hyper-V event log and asynchronous Hyper-V tasks history)
  • Failover Clustering for high availability 

The latest version of vtUtilities features a GUI with integrated Cluster Management. 

Hyper-V clustering is supported on Widows and Hyper-V Servers 2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2 and features support for cluster summery information (including failover clustering events) and
cluster nodes management.

You can connect to the existing clusters by using vtUtilities 'Select View' dialogue:

Discover all Hyper-V clusters in AD:

Overview cluster summery information and get easy access to the selected Windows failover cluster events
View and manage status of cluster nodes
View and fully manage cluster roles

Virtual Machines result view in vtUtilities Cluster Manager displays a list of all VMs configured for high availability with a possibility to start/stop a corresponding cluster node, move VM or its storage to a different cluster node, configure (add) another VM from any cluster node as highly available or remove cluster role for highly available VM.

Hyper-V Replica Broker

Installation of vtUtilities

The product requires a 64-bit versions of Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 10 and any version of Windows Server you're intending to use: Windows Server 2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2 and the latest Windows Server 2016 TP3.
vtUtilities also can be used on 64-bit versions of Windows what don't support Hyper-V role.
Other prerequisites include x64-based processors and .NET 3.51 or later.
See our getting started guide for instructions.


One-time fee $120 for a permanent license.


A 7-day free trial for registered customers can be downloaded here  vtUtilities Free Trial

vtUtilities are certified for Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2 and listed in Windows Server Catalog

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 4

Microsoft released Technical Preview 4 of Windows Server 2016

Download link: 

From Microsoft site:
"A highlight of this technical preview is the first public build of Hyper-V Containers, a deployment option for Windows Server Containers,"
What's new in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 4

  • What's New in Nano Server. Nano Server now supports the DNS Server and IIS server roles, as well as MPIO, VMM, SCOM, DSC push mode, DCB, Windows Server Installer, and the WMI provider for Windows Update. Its Recovery Console supports editing and repairing the network configuration. A Windows PowerShell module is now available to simplify building Nano Server images.
  • Windows Containers: Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview now includes containers, which allow many isolated applications to run on one computer system. They build fast and are highly scalable and portable. Two different types of container runtime are included with the feature, each with a different degree of application isolation. Windows Server Containers achieve isolation through namespace and process isolation. Hyper-V Containers encapsulates each container in a light weight virtual machine. For some additional information on containers, see Containers: Docker, Windows and Trends.
  • What's new in Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) in Windows Server Technical Preview. Active Directory Domain Services includes improvements to help organizations secure Active Directory environments and provide better identity management experiences for both corporate and personal devices.
  • What’s New in Active Directory Federation Services. Active Directory Federation Services (AD FS) in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview includes new features that enable you to configure AD FS to authenticate users stored in Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) directories. For more information, see Active Directory Federation Services Overview [Role/Tech Overview].
  • What's New in Failover Clustering in Windows Server Technical Preview. This topic explains the new and changed functionality of Failover Clustering. A Hyper-V or Scale-out File Server failover cluster can now easily be upgraded without any downtime or need to build a new cluster with nodes that are running Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview.
  • What's new in Hyper-V on Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview. This topic explains the new and changed functionality of the Hyper-V role in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview, Client Hyper-V running on Windows 10, and Microsoft Hyper-V Server Technical Preview.
  • Windows Defender Overview for Windows Server Technical Preview. Windows Server Antimalware is installed and enabled by default in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview, but the user interface for Windows Server Antimalware is not installed. However, Windows Server Antimalware will update antimalware definitions and protect the computer without the user interface. If you need the user interface for Windows Server Antimalware, you can install it after the operating system installation by using the Add Roles and Features Wizard.
  • What's New in Remote Desktop Services in Windows Server 2016. For the Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview, the Remote Desktop Services team focused on improvements based on customer requests. We added support for OpenGL and OpenCL applications, and added MultiPoint Services as a new role in Windows Server.
  • What's New in File and Storage Services in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview. This topic explains the new and changed functionality of Storage Services. An update in storage quality of service now enables you to create storage QoS policies on a Scale-Out File Server and assign them to one or more virtual disks on Hyper-V virtual machines. Storage Replica is a new feature that enables synchronous replication between servers for disaster recovery, as well as stretching of a failover cluster for high availability..
  • What's New in Web Application Proxy in Windows Server Technical Preview. The latest version of Web Application Proxy focuses on new features that enable publishing and preauthentication for more applications and improved user experience. Check out the full list of new features that includes preauthentication for rich client apps such as Exchange ActiveSync and wildcard domains for easier publishing of SharePoint apps.
  • What's new in the Windows console. The underlying console host (Conhost.exe) has been updated in several ways, adding new and different functionality to the Windows command prompt, the Windows PowerShell prompt, and any other character-mode applications. For details, see What's New in the Windows Console in Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview and Console Improvements in the Windows 10 Technical Preview , but you should take note of these important changes:
    • The new console functionality is enabled by default. If an existing application doesn't work properly with the new console, you can select Use legacy console on the Options tab and then restart your application. You can also control individual aspects of the new functionality with registry keys; see details at the linked topics.
    • Console windows can be resized dynamically with the mouse. This could cause issues with some console applications.
    • Quick Edit mode is enabled by default. If this conflicts with your application, you can disable it on the Options tab.
    • There are new keyboard shortcuts for copy, paste, and history navigation. If these conflict with your application, you can disable them on the Options tab (look for Enable CTRL key shortcuts and Extended test selection keys).
    • The default font type for new console windows is TrueType. You can still use raster fonts, but they won't scale properly on some displays.
    • Text wraps and reflows by default when you resize a window. If necessary, you can disable this on the Layouts tab.
    • In some cases, after upgrade installation, fonts in the console window might be very small. To adjust this, use the Fonts tab.
  • What’s New in Windows PowerShell 5.0. Windows PowerShell 5.0 includes significant new features—including support for developing with classes, and new security features—that extend its use, improve its usability, and allow you to control and manage Windows-based environments more easily and comprehensively. Multiple new features in Windows PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) are also described in this topic.
  • What's New in Networking in Windows Server Technical Preview. The majority of what you’ll find for networking is new in TP3. We bring a scalable network controller for programming policies, an L4 load balancer for high availability and performance, enhanced gateways for hybrid connectivity, and an underlying network fabric that converges RDMA traffic together with tenant traffic, DNS policies that control how your DNS servers respond to incoming requests, and better integration of DNS and IPAM.

Additional Information

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

New Links for Windows Server, Hyper-V, Azure / July - October 2015

Downloads & Scripts

Hyper-V Live Migration Performance Tests

Windows 10 Client Connector Update for Windows Server Essentials 2012 R2 Released

Windows 10 Group Policy (.ADMX) Templates now available for download

MDOP 2015

Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 3 Networking Overview

Blogs & Press 

Deploying Windows 10 Virtual Desktop Infrastructure on Windows Server 2016 (Technical Preview)  ITVCE

Testing a USB Windows Install disk with Hyper-V  S & T

The EXPTA {blog}: EXPTA Gen6 Home Lab Server Builds and Parts Lists

Understanding Network Virtualization Part 1 / Part 2  Tip of the Day
Understanding KVP in Hyper-V  Tip of the Day

How to setup or upgrade a DPM 2012 standalone server  S & T

Production Checkpoints in Windows 10  S & T

Upgrading your Virtual Machine version  S & T

Disabling Windows Firewall on Hyper-V Server Core and Windows Server 2012 R2  technet

How to Install Hyper-V on Bare Metal  Altaro

How to Create and Run Virtual Machine In Windows 10 With Hyper-V   technet2u

Windows Container Resources - DSC and VMM Templates, and more to come  msdn

Virtualization and some coffee: Explaining Windows Server Containers – Part One

Microsoft Loves Linux Deep Dive  s & t

Hyper-V in the Real World - VR

Hybrid Network Infrastructure in Microsoft Azure   Windows Networking

Hyper-V tuning: Linux virtual machine over iSCSI follow up  ITworld

What you need to know about Windows Server 2016  techradar

Stop a Hyper-V VM from moving from a certain host in a cluster  WinITPro

Securing Hyper-V with the Virtual Machine Generation Identifier  WinITPro
Why is NIC Teaming Dynamic mode better than Address Hash for non-Hyper-V servers?
The differences between Windows Containers and Hyper-V Containers in Windows Server 2016

Testing Windows Server 2016 With Nested Hyper-V  VR

Deep Dive on Windows Server 2016 New Features: Nested Virtualization in Hyper-V  petri

Mapping features of Hyper-V to VMware  VirtAdmin

Active Directory Insights  windowsnetwoking

How to Successfully Create a Hyper-V Cluster Using Virtual Machine Manager   windowsnetworking

Windows Server 2016

Windows Server 2016 Essentials TP3

Do you need Hyper-V to try Windows Containers? - Ben Armstrong

Running Minecraft in Windows Containers - Ben Armstrong

Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V Cluster NComputing

Step-By-Step: Setup and Installation of Windows Server Containers  CANITPRO

Windows Server 2016 TP now includes containers techradar

Why Windows Server Containers and Why You Need to Look at Containers? Hands on…  msdn

The differences between Windows Containers and Hyper-V Containers in Windows Server 2016 WindowsITPro

Hands on with Windows Server 2016 Containers theregister

Inside the guts of Nano Server, Microsoft's tiny new Cloud OS  theregister

Microsoft Announces Nano Server for Modern Apps and Cloud  technet

Microsoft Nanoserver: Everything you need to know  pluralsight blog

First Look: Windows Nano Server -- Redmondmag.com

Getting Started with Nano Server  technet

Core Network Guide 

Windows Server 2016 Feature: Switch Embedded Teaming  petri

Windows Insider Preview: Nested Virtualization
(builds prior to 10565 will not work)
image via Microsoft
Windows Server 2016 Essentials TP3 Integration With Azure Virtual Networks
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Windows Server 2016 Essentials TP3 Online Services Integration
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4


A deep dive into Nano Server   MVA

New Windows Server 2016 Storage Video series


I’m giving away MILLIONS of FREE Microsoft eBooks again! Including: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Office 2013, Office 365, SharePoint 2013, Dynamics CRM, PowerShell, Exchange Server, Lync 2013, System Center, Azure, Cloud, SQL Server
How You Can "Download All" of the Microsoft eBooks I posted

Related posts

Windows Server 2012 R2 / Hyper-V / Azure Links & Videos
A collection of Windows Server 2012 R2 / Hyper-V Server 2012 R2 links & related articles
Useful Links for Windoes Server 2012 R2 / Hyper-V Server 2012 R2

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Windows 10 Shortcut Keys

This guide published 8/24/2015
Download link: Shortcut keys for Windows 10

How to switch from one desktop to another using keyboard shortcuts

How to create desktop shortcuts for settings in Windows 10  intowindows

Windows key clip_image001Open and close the Start menu.
clip_image001[1]+1, clip_image001[2]+2, etc.Switch to the desktop and launch the nth application in the taskbar. For example, clip_image001[3]+1 launches whichever application is first in the list, numbered from left to right.
clip_image001[4]+AOpen the action center.
clip_image001[5]+BHighlight the notification area.
clip_image001[6]+CLaunch Cortana into listening mode.[1] Users can begin to speak to Cortana immediately.
clip_image001[7]+DSwitch between Show Desktop (hides/shows any applications and other windows) and the previous state.
clip_image001[8]+ESwitch to the desktop and launch File Explorer with the Quick Access tab displayed.
clip_image001[9]+HOpen the Share clip_image003 charm.
clip_image001[10]+IOpen the Settings clip_image005 app.
clip_image001[11]+KOpen the Connect pane to connect to wireless displays and audio devices.
clip_image001[12]+LLock the device and go to the Lock screen.
clip_image001[13]+MSwitch to the desktop and minimize all open windows.
clip_image001[14]+OLock device orientation.
clip_image001[15]+POpen the Project pane to search and connect to external displays and projectors.
clip_image001[16]+RDisplay the Run dialog box.
clip_image001[17]+SLaunch Cortana.[2] Users can begin to type a query immediately.
clip_image001[18]+TCycle through the apps on the taskbar.
clip_image001[19]+ULaunch the Ease of Access Center.
clip_image001[20]+VCycle through notifications.
clip_image001[21]+XOpen the advanced menu in the lower-left corner of the screen.
clip_image001[22]+ZOpen the app-specific command bar.
clip_image001[23]+ENTERLaunch Narrator.
clip_image001[24]+SPACEBARSwitch input language and keyboard layout.
clip_image001[25]+TABOpen Task view.
clip_image001[26]+,Peek at the desktop.
clip_image001[27]+Plus SignZoom in.
clip_image001[28]+Minus SignZoom out.
clip_image001[29]+ESCAPEClose Magnifier.
clip_image001[30]+LEFT ARROWDock the active window to the left half of the monitor.
clip_image001[31]+RIGHT ARROWDock the active window to the right half of the monitor.
clip_image001[32]+UP ARROWMaximize the active window vertically and horizontally.
clip_image001[33]+DOWN ARROWRestore or minimize the active window.
clip_image001[34]+SHIFT+UP ARROWMaximize the active window vertically, maintaining the current width.
Restore or minimize the active window vertically, maintaining the current width.
clip_image001[36]+SHIFT+LEFT ARROWWith multiple monitors, move the active window to the monitor on the left.
clip_image001[37]+SHIFT+RIGHT ARROWWith multiple monitors, move the active window to the monitor on the right.
clip_image001[38]+HOMEMinimize all nonactive windows; restore on second keystroke.
clip_image001[39]+PRNT SCRNTake a picture of the screen and place it in theComputer>Pictures>Screenshots folder.
clip_image001[40]+CTRL+LEFT/RIGHT arrowSwitch to the next or previous virtual desktop.
clip_image001[41]+CTRL+DCreate a new virtual desktop.
clip_image001[42]+CTRL+F4Close the current virtual desktop.
clip_image001[43]+?Launch the Windows Feedback App.

[1] If Cortana is unavailable or disabled, this shortcut has no function.
[2] Cortana is only available in certain countries/regions, and some Cortana features might not be available everywhere. If Cortana is unavailable or disabled, this command opens Search.