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We're having a discussion here about Hyper-V and vmware. Am I right in thinking that ESX and Hyper-V are competing technologies and it is not possible or desirable to run hyper-v on a box virtualized on ESX? Is this because the machines vmware emulates do not have virtualized implementations of the process virtualization support?

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  • Can you list one compelling reason to do this?
    – Izzy
    Sep 22, 2009 at 19:20
  • No I cannot. I believe people here wish to experiment.
    – stimms
    Sep 22, 2009 at 21:53

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Yes, Hyper-V and VMware ESX are competing technologies. I don't think there's anything preventing you from running one on top of the other (you can run VMware on a machine that does not support hardware virtualization), but I don't know why you would want to.

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Windows 2008 will not let you add the hyper-V role to a machine running in ESXI.

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Am I right in thinking that ESX and Hyper-V are competing technologies and it is not possible or desirable to run hyper-v on a box virtualized on ESX? Is this because the machines vmware emulates do not have virtualized implementations of the process virtualization support?

Yes, running a virtual machine (such as Hyper-V on Win2k8) as a guest vm inside VMWare ESX host is not a good idea. Not (only) because they're competitors, but technically there's a lot of work the processors do behind the scenes using nested page tables. To cut to the chase, an article (link) briefly explains the benefits:

.. when virtualization is thrown into the mix, address translation becomes a challenge because virtual machines (VMs) don't have native direct access to the host server memory..

With nested paging, a page table in the hardware takes care of the translation between the guest address of a VM and the physical address, reducing overhead, Mueting said.

Creating a virtual machine that hosts another virtual machine I think would be extremely detrimental to overall performance. Granted I think if you wanted to host Hyper-V within ESX, it should be feasible but I would argue it would be a waste of resources.

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I am not sure whether or not this would work or not, but I can't think of a reason why anyone would want to. There would almost certainly be a negative impact running hyper-v on ESX as I am sure then virtual processors wouldn't provide any Intel/AMD VT support.

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  • Opps Rob beat me to the punch
    – ITGuy24
    Sep 22, 2009 at 18:01

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