So whats NEW in Hyper-V vNext

After installing the Technical Preview of the next server OS, I was quite interested to see what new features Hyper-V came with. Obviously there are lots of new functionality in the new version and no doubt plenty more to come but here is a list of a few of the new features mentioned at TechEd.

The following list has been taken from TechNet and the TechEd slides available on Channel 9 link at the bottom of the post. 

Rolling Cluster Upgrade

You can now add a node running Windows Server Technical Preview to a Hyper-V Cluster with nodes running Windows Server 2012 R2. The cluster continues to function at a Windows Server 2012 R2 feature level until all of the nodes in the cluster have been upgraded and the cluster functional level has been upgraded.

  • No new hardware
  • No downtime
  • The ability to roll-back safely if needed

New VM Upgrade Process

When you move or import a virtual machine to a server running Hyper-V on Windows Server Technical Preview from Windows Server 2012 R2, the virtual machine’s configuration file is not automatically upgraded. This allows the virtual machine to be moved back to a server running Windows Server 2012 R2. You will not have access to new virtual machine features until you manually update the virtual machine configuration version.

Changing how we handle VM servicing

  • VM drivers (integration services) updated when needed
  • Require latest available VM drivers for that guest operating system
  • Drivers delivered directly to the guest operating system via Windows Update

Secure Boot Support for Linux

Linux operating systems running on generation 2 virtual machines can now boot with the secure boot option enabled.

Distributed Storage Qos

  • New architecture to improve reliability, scale and performance
  • You can now create storage QoS policies on a Scale-Out File Server and assign them to one or more virtual disks on Hyper-V virtual machines. Storage performance is automatically readjusted to meet policies as the storage load fluctuates.

Evolving Hyper-V Backup

  • Decoupling backing up virtual machines from backing up the underlying storage.
  • No longer dependent on hardware snapshots for core backup functionality, but still able to take advantage of hardware capabilities when they are present.Most Hyper-V backup solutions today implement kernel level file system filters in order to gain efficiency.
  • Built in change tracing for Backup
  • Makes it hard for backup partners to update to newer versions of Windows
  • Increases the complexity of Hyper-V deployments New virtual machine configuration file
  • Efficient change tracking for backup is now part of the platform

VM Configuration Changes

  • Binary format for efficient performance at scale
  • Resilient logging for changes
  • New file extensions
    • .VMCX and .VMRS

Replica Support for Hot Add of VHDX

  • When you add a new virtual hard disk to a virtual machine that is being replicated – it is automatically added to the not-replicated set. This can be updated online.

Runtime Memory Resize

  • Dynamic memory is great, but more can be done. For Windows Server Technical Preview guests, you can now increase and decrease the memory assigned to virtual machines while they are running.

Network Adapter Identification

  • You can name individual network adapters in the virtual machine settings – and see the same name inside the guest operating system.

Hyper-V Manager Improvements

Multiple improvements to make it easier to remotely manage and troubleshoot Hyper-V Servers:

  • Connecting via WinRM
  • Support for alternate credentials
  • Connecting via IP address
  • Able to manage Windows Server 2012, 2012 2 and Technical Preview from a single console.

Hot add / remove of network adapters

  • Network adapters can be added and removed from Generation 2 virtual machines while they are running.

Hypervisor power management improvements  

  • Updated hypervisor power management model to support new modes of power management.

Hyper-V Cluster Management

Providing a single view of an entire Hyper-V cluster through WMI

  •  “Just one big Hyper-V server”
  • Limited functionality at this point in time:
    • Enumerate virtual machines
    • Receive notification of live migration event
  • Root\HyperVCluster\v2


  • Support for OpenGL 4.4 and OpenCL 1.1 API