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A few months ago we purchased a Dell server with the intent to eventually start rolling out VMWare. Now we are exploring Hyper-V as an option instead, however I've seen a requirement for an IDE drive mentioned several times, including a Hyper-V book that just listed an IDE drive as a requirement. Some example links: (4th gotcha, down the page a bit)

How to create IDE-based boot, SCSI-based system disks in Hyper-V Guest

We do not have a SAN or NAS, we are just wanting to convert the existing server w/ 8 SCSI HDDs into a Hyper-V server w/ 4 virtual machines using the local HDDs for storage. I asked a Dell rep about it and he said that Hyper-V didn't require an IDE drive anymore, but he was unable to explain why or how it was used previously. I also couldn't find any corroborating information that something changed.

So, what I am trying to understand is:

1) Is this requirement for an IDE something that affects me? (main concern)

2) What exactly requires the IDE drive that is mentioned?

3) Is this actually a requirement for an IDE controller connecting to an IDE Hard Drive, or can it be emulated? If so, how can I find out more about that process?

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MarkM is correct, and you need a new sales rep if the current one is selling you hardware with no idea why it should work. – Chris S Nov 18 '11 at 18:38
up vote 8 down vote accepted

You're confused. The Hyper-V host will run just fine on SCSI (or SAS) disks. All of the documentation that you're reading is referring to SCSI/IDE virtual devices. As in, not the physical hardware in your server, but rather the virtual hardware that's configured on the guests.

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To elaborate just a touch: The host server can boot off anything the hardware and Windows supports (SCSI, SAS, IDE, iSCSI, FC, IB, etc). The VMs inside Hyper-V must boot off an emulated IDE disk. Microsoft's "SCSI" disks inside Hyper-V have nothing to do with SCSI HBAs, they're Synthetic Adapters (similar to Virtio in QEmu/KVM). – Chris S Nov 18 '11 at 18:41
Thank you for elaborating! – Eric Nov 18 '11 at 19:25

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