Windows Server 2008 R2 & Windows 7 Freeze When Using SVGA Drivers

I recently ran into an issue when installing my first Windows Server 2008 R2 virtual machine.  The VM would hang/freeze randomly when used through the VMware vCenter Client's console.  It turns out this is a known issue (see this VMware KB Article) with the SVGA driver that is installed as part of the default installation of VMware Tools.  While the article does not explain why you should disable the SVGA driver, it's advice is correct if you want to avoid problems in your guest VM.  To correct my problem, I removed the SVGA driver from the Windows Device Manager and rebooted.  If you are … [Read more...]

Balloon Driver Problems with SQL

I have been meaning to write this up for a while; Scott Drummonds' 'Love Your Balloon Driver' post today at his Virtual Performance blog gave me a nice reminder.  I actually caught a sneak peak at the graphs with an explanation from Scott at his instructor-led lab at VMworld 2009.  Scott calls out that the only workload they discovered suffers from balloon driver activity is Java.  The reason for Java's problems with balloon driver activity is that Java itself runs in a VM and so the guest OS cannot properly determine which pages should be swapped out when the balloon driver calls for … [Read more...]

Microsoft Offline Virtual Machine Servicing Tool v2 Released

Microsoft released version 2 of their Offline Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (OVMSTv2) yesterday.  The updated version of the tool, a component of Microsoft's Solution Accelerator family of 'best-practice-meets-tools' adds integration with System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008, and support for System Center Configuration Manager 2007 SP1, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R2, and Windows Server® Update Services 3.0 SP1.  The tool works in much the same way as VMware's Update Manager product updates Windows guest VM's. Support for System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 obviously … [Read more...]