Perform a Clean Installation
The first thing that I recommend doing is to perform a clean installation of Windows Server 2008. Server virtualization is extremely resource intensive, far more so than most other server applications, so I recommend using a clean Windows installation on a dedicated server.
Installing the Hyper-V Role
Now, log in using an account with local administrative privileges, and then open the Server manager. In case you aren’t familiar with the Server Manager, it’s the new tool that acts as a centralized management utility for Windows Server 2008. You can access it by entering the ServerManager.msc command at the server’s Run prompt.
When Server Manager opens, right click on the Roles container, and then choose the Add Roles command from the resulting shortcut menu. Windows will now launch the Add Roles Wizard.
Click Next to bypass the wizard’s Welcome screen and then you should see a screen similar to the one shown in Figure A, asking you which roles you would like to install. Select the Hyper-V check box, and then click Next.
You must choose the Hyper-V Role.
At this point, you will see the screen that’s shown in Figure B. Basically, this screen just tells you that you may end up needing to enable virtualization at the BIOS level prior to installing the Hyper-V roll. Some servers require this, and others don’t. The screen also tells you that after installation is complete, you can use the Hyper-V Manager to create and configure your virtual machines. The serene also contains a few links that you can use to access more information about the Hyper-V role.
This screen allows you to access more information about the role that you are installing.
Click Next, and you will be taken to a screen similar to the one that’s shown in Figure C. As you can see in the figure, your virtual machines require virtual networks in order for them to be able to communicate with other network hosts. Essentially, this screen allows you to choose the physical network adapter that you want to bind the virtual network adapter to.
You must bind the virtual network adapter to at least one physical network adapter.
You have the option of choosing multiple network adapters for load balancing, but you also have the option of using a single physical network adapter for all of your virtual machines. When you have made your selection, click Next.
You should now see a screen confirming that you are about to install the Hyper-V role, and warning you that the server may require a reboot after installing the role. Now, just click the Install button to install the role. The actual amount of time that it takes to install the role varies depending on your server’s performance, but the entire process took about 20 seconds on my server.
When the installation process completes, click the Close button, and then click Yes when you are prompted to reboot the server. When the server reboots, log back into the server and the Server Manager should automatically load and resume the installation process. After about a minute, you should see a message telling you that Hyper-V has installed successfully. Click Close to complete the wizard.