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Over the last 18 months we have been involved in a number of projects helping clients deploy SharePoint into virtualized environments. As a result of these projects we learnt a great deal about how to virtualize SharePoint, and during November 2008, Martin Kearn, James O`Neill and I presented two sessions at the TechEd 2008 Conference in Barcelona to share our field experiences.
At both these sessions, we asked the question: “How many of you are planning on, or have deployed your production SharePoint farm in a virtualized environment?”. At least 60-70% of the audience indicated they either had already or were planning on virtualizing their SharePoint environment. It clearly demonstrated the need for more guidance, and is one of the reasons for this series.
The following is a list of the main drivers we have experienced in existing customer environments:
One of the first questions my customers ask when considering virtualization is “Is SharePoint supported in a virtualized environment?” This question breaks down into two questions that need to be answered.
The SharePoint and windows product team announced support for virtualization of SharePoint on Windows using a number of virtualization products. From a Microsoft perspective, Virtual Server 2005 and Hyper V are fully supported. Third party products, such as VMWare, are also supported via the Windows Server Virtualization Validation Program (SVVP). This is fantastic news for the enterprises with existing investments in virtualization products, such as VMWARE ESX virtualization stack. Here are links to the official statements on Microsoft websites:
Some points to make about this series:
If you need assistance virtualizing your SharePoint Farm, Microsoft Consulting Services can help you. Please send me an email with your contact details, and I will put you in touch with someone from our engagement team who can assist you. Alternatively, if you have a technical question, I will do my best to respond to it.
I hope you find this series as useful and interesting, as I am enjoying putting it together! Am I missing a section or area? Do you have a performance tip I can list? Let me know and I will add it! My contact details are list below.
This article was authored by:
Brian Wilson Senior Consultant Microsoft Consulting Services UK Brian.Wilson@Microsoft.com
Click here for my bio page