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The Rational Guide to Managing Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 (Rational Guides) (Rational Guides) [Paperback]

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Item description for The Rational Guide to Managing Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 (Rational Guides) (Rational Guides) by Anil Desai...

Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 is Microsoft's server-side virtualization product. Virtual Server has been designed to allow users a great deal of power and flexibility in hosting virtual machines in mission-critical Enterprise deployments without having to invest in additional hardware.

In this clear and concise book, Microsoft MVP Anil Desai discusses the benefits of virtualization technology and covers the essentials of working with Virtual Server 2005, including installation, configuration, creating a virtual machine, and installing a guest operating system. It covers the technical architecture of Virtual Server, topics related to disk, CPU, memory, and network resources, as well as procedures for administering host and guest operating systems.

While this book is a superb introduction to Virtual Server 2005, it also covers advanced topics, such as the methods and practices for improving host resource utilization and for monitoring virtual machine performance. This book is the recommended prerequisite reading for The Rational Guide To Scripting Microsoft Virtual Server 2005, which focuses on programming Virtual Server 2005 with scripting and automation.

Technical accuracy is assured by Mike Sterling, Program Manager on the Windows Virtualization team at Microsoft.

Includes FREE Bonus Materials:
  • Bonus Chapter: "Optimizing Disk Performance"
  • Bonus Chapter: "Optimizing Network Performance"
  • Bonus Chapter: "Virtualization Best Practices"

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Item Specifications...

Pages   222
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.9" Width: 6" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 30, 2006
Publisher   Rational Press
ISBN  1932577289  
ISBN13  9781932577280  
UPC  827188021180  

Availability  0 units.

More About Anil Desai

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Anil Desai is an independent consultant based in Austin, TX. He specializes in evaluating, implementing, and managing IT solutions. He has worked extensively with IT management, development, and database technology. Anil holds many certifications and is a Microsoft MVP (Windows Server - Virtualization). Anil is the author of numerous technical books focusing on the Windows Server platform, virtualization, databases, and IT management best practices. He is also a frequent contributor to numerous IT publications and conferences.

Anil Desai currently resides in Austin, in the state of Texas.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Computer Science & Information Systems > Operating Systems
2Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Microsoft > Operating Systems > Windows - General
3Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Networking > Data in the Enterprise > Client-Server Systems
4Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Operating Systems > General

Reviews - What do customers think about The Rational Guide to Managing Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 (Rational Guides) (Rational Guides)?

Basics Covered well. Good Overview of the technology.  Apr 16, 2007
This book very good for someone who would like to learn what is Virtualization in general and Virtual Server 2005 in specific. Good coverage from the basics of installation to administering Virtual Server 2005. Good Book over all. There was a quite a bit of grammatical errors and errors in general.But the content compensates the errors. A definite YES for those interested in Virtualization.
Fast, focused quickstart to Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2  Jan 3, 2007
As the author states, this book provides the essentials to install, configure, create, and administer Virtual Server 2005. Being less than 200 pages of actual content, the reader shouldn't expect this to be the guide that carries you well beyond the basics. It covers all the topics in adequate detail for the IT professional that has never used Virtual Server, or merely tinkered with it for that matter. This guide will definitely provide the nuts and bolts for the IT Pro new to Virtualization to perform basic planning, installation, configuration, and administration of Virtual Server in a basic single virtual host server environment.

The book is divided into five Parts, as reviewed below:

Part I - Introduction, Chapters 1 - 3: The introduction is written for someone who is new to virtualization. Topics covered: brief history-overview, terminology, basic concepts, planning, licensing, features, and benefits. The first three chapters are meant for the layman, the uninformed CIO or CEO, or the non-IT professional. IT admins would be welcome to spend 15 minutes on Part I and dive into Part II.

Part II - Installation & Configuration, Chpt. 4-6: Covering the basics of installing and configuring the host server, guest VM's, and Virtual Server 2005 R2, the author provides exceptionally good content in these chapters - but again, this is great for first timers. MSVS2K5 pros will find Part II uninformative. There is a lot of information here, so please don't misunderstand my review. The author goes into adequate detail about virtual server installation such as default file locations, the MSVS2K5 admin website and Remote Console, installation options, ISO installation and unattended installs, guest OS configuration and installation, VM additions, hardware config for the host and guest OS, and more. What is missing - again, keep in mind that this is only a 200-pg guide - is better coverage of security and IIS - these are covered in more detail in Part III, (A suggestion to the author - what is in Part III regarding security and IIS needs to be in Part II, and the Part III Security and IIS topics therefore need to go into much more detail.)

Part III - Administration, Chpt. 7-9: The chapters are well worth a good read by any IT admin. Coverage of virtual disks, virtual networks, and MSVS2K5 security issues (in essence) is very adequate, particularly the content on virtual disk architecture, undo disks feature, differencing disks, chaining virtual disks, linked disks, virtual network adapter and the underlying host adapter & service, loopback, etc.

Security covers the essentials with regard to MSVS2K5R2 installed on a single host server and managed by the local machine administrator, but I was looking for much more in this chapter. Very little coverage on Active Directory integration of MSVS2K5R2, or security permissions and administration in production AD, MOM, and/or SMS-managed virtual environments is discussed. Given that, the author does go into very good detail about the default ports, web administration site security, considerations for using a separate admin server, and VM Remote Console security issues - all from a local machine admin (not domain admin) perspective. Part III does go into good detail for any IT Pro to appreciate this book, or at the very least to whet one's appetite for more Microsoft Virtual Server technology. As one who has used MSVS2K5 for over a year now, Part III is the "meat" of this book and is worth the $16 or so to help me keep my uninformed peers and supervisor informed about virtual server technology, Virtual Disks, and Virtual Networks without taking up much of my time explaining it - here boss, just spend 1 hour reading this.

Part IV - Advanced Concepts, Chpt. 10: The coverage of CPU and resources utilization, configuration, and monitoring is adequate. The author goes into good detail about what is there; the seasoned IT Pro can then take it and run with it.

Part V - Extras: Index, Book Registration, etc. No comments here.

Be sure to register and download the bonus chapters (they are in full color too -somewhat missed in the printed book). Now that you have installed and performed basic administration and configuration of your Virtual Server on a single host server, the coverage of more advanced topics in the bonus chapters is excellent, considering the price of this book. While some of the articles in the bonus chapters can be found on Mr. Anil Desia's professional website and on, you could spend hours searching for those articles and only find a fraction of the content. The bonus chapters go into much greater detail than Part II & Part III as well as expanding on topics I didn't expect to find in such a book. Sorry, I won't go into details about what the bonus chapters cover exactly. Suffice it to say that the bonus chapters provide the path for the neophyte VM admin who's tinkered with MSVS2K5R2 to becoming an expert with this technology.

Summary: For the price and with the bonus chapters, this book is well worth the read for the money. It is well written, fast-paced, and succinct although the early chapters are almost uninformative for anyone except the neophyte. The book will definitely make an IT professional proficient and expert with Virtual Server 2005 in a very quick manner - with the bonus chapters.

(SIDE NOTE: Any IT professional interested in virtualization - whether with VMWare, Xen, or Microsoft Virtual Server, should seriously consider this book - skip Parts I & II of course and dive into Parts III, IV, and the bonus chapters. It will be clear to anyone reading this book that Microsoft is or will be a very competitive alternative to VMWare's (free) Virtual Server, GSX Server, and possibly Infrastructure 3/ESX for anyone running a Microsoft Server environment.)
Great overview of Virtual Server 2005  Sep 13, 2006
If you are thinking of deploying Virtual Server then this book is especially useful as an evaluation guide and does a better job of bringing all the information you actually need to run Virtual Server into one place than the official documentation. A few things have changed since the book was published - namely Microsoft has made Virtual Server free (to compete with VMware Server) and also the beta of Virtual Server R2 SP1 is under way - which brings support for the new on-chip virtualisation features AMD and Intel have introduced with their latest CPUs, as well as support for backing up virtual machines with no interruption. Other than that the book is bang up to date and covers everything except scripting - which is covered very well by the author's other book.
Good book for a fast and easy learning  Jul 8, 2006
The Rational Guide to Managing Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 is an ideal book for who has to start fast.
It permits the reader to explore the large majority of product's features but it's not overwhelming.

Chapters 1 and 2 cover basic concepts of server virtualization and product itself, listing benefits of the technology and scenarios where it's useful.
These chapters also mention competiting products like VMware solutions and Xen, but also alternative approaches like application virtualization.
The biggest bonus of Chapter 2 is a comparison between Virtual PC and Virtual Server, something newcomers always ask, and a clarification on virtual machines compatibility between the 2 products.

Chapter 3 briefly covers planification phase, detailing minimal requirements for host OS and suggesting how to size it depending on virtual machines you plan to run.
It also mention hot topics like licensing and products support inside virtual machines.

Chapter 4 details product installation and configuration steps, clarifying some process issues reader could encounter with several real-world tips.

Chapter from 5 to 8 are dedicated to virtual machines management, with a particular focus on virtual hardware.
Virtual storage (Chapter 7) and virtual networking (Chapter 8) architectures are extensively covered, with comparison between concurrent options.

Chapter 9 is all about security and help readers to understand and correctly configure several aspect of the product, from access to virtual machines to access to web management interface.
File systems permissions, running services for Virtual Server components, web server permissions are covered in an understandable way.

The last chapter, 10, is dedicated to advanced concepts and includes critical tasks like performance monitoring and resource allocations for virtual machines. Both critical in the fine tuning phase.

Three more chapters are available only online for registered readers and are highly recommended to further improve fine tuning capabilities when using Virtual Server in serious implementations:

- Bonus Chapter A: Optimizing disk performances
- Bonus Chapter B: Optimizing network performances
- Bonus Chapter C: Virtualization best practices

At the moment of writing this one is the only book entirely focused on Virtual Server 2005, covering the R2 version and being assured in quality by Mike Sterling, Product Manager for Windows Virtualization at Microsoft.

If you are looking for a starting point to become operative in no time and without efforts for a small project or personal use this book is a good choice.
And since it provides a wide coverage of topics you'll always have starting points to futher deepen your knowledge.

If instead you are looking for the definitive guide to virtualization and Microsoft Virtual Server 2005, planning a hardcore use in your company, then you should look somewhere else.
Great Foundation for Managing Virtual Servers  Jul 3, 2006
This book saved me a ton of time. I was recently tapped in my company to put together a "virtual server" environment as a proof-of-concept. Not having much experience to begin with, I was looking for a source of material that could help me through this project in a real-life way (I'm not trying for some certification here). The book was clear, concise, and well organized. It led me through the steps necessary to configure my environment to successfully demonstrate the proof-of-concept. I'm not so confident I would have had the positve outcome without this book.

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