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Top five SCVMM 2016 features to look out for

SCVMM 2016 provides new features, such as Nano Server management, and enhancements to existing networking and security features to better manage the entire virtualization stack.

Microsoft has added new SCVMM 2016 features and enhanced existing ones, including management features for compute, security, storage and networking.

Before familiarizing yourself with the top SCVMM 2016 features, note that the installation process doesn't provide an opt-in and opt-out option for the complex event processing (CEP) program. That's most likely because Microsoft wants to collect CEP details for SCVMM improvement purposes.

Resolved feature gap between SCVMM and Hyper-V

In the previous release of SCVMM, there was a time lag when managing all the features of Hyper-V. In other words, SCVMM lacked management support for a few of the new Hyper-V features.

SCVMM 2016 now supports managing almost all the Hyper-V 2016 features. For example, SCVMM 2016 fully supports the Cluster Rolling Upgrade feature. This includes moving VMs running in a Hyper-V 2016 cluster to a node in the cluster, evicting the node, installing Windows Server 2016 on the node and then joining it back to the Hyper-V cluster.

Centralized Storage QoS policy-driven wizard

Similar to the Cluster Rolling Upgrade feature, you can easily apply the policies for the centralized storage quality of service (QoS) engine using a wizard provided by SCVMM 2016. To configure storage QoS policies on Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V, you must use PowerShell.

SCVMM 2016 features also make it possible to assign policies for existing and new VMs.

Manage Nano Server via SCVMM 2016

With the release of Windows Server 2016, which also includes Nano Server, Microsoft added the ability to manage Nano Server in SCVMM 2016. You can provision both virtualization hosts and VMs by running Nano Server. You can also use Nano Server cmdlets to create images for Nano Server deployments. Use the Import-Module NanoServerImageGenerator.psm1 command to import Nano Server cmdlets.

Networking and security enhancements

You can now use SCVMM 2016 to create an SCVMM template that includes the configuration for deploying multi-node Network Controller, Windows Server Gateway and Software Load Balancer components.

SCVMM 2016 provides the ability to add or remove a virtual network adapter from a production VM. Similarly, you can now add or remove static and dynamic memory for VMs. For example, you can run the PowerShell commands below to add a virtual network adapter to a running VM:

$ThisVM = Get-SCVirtualMachine -Name "TestVM"
New-SCVirtualNetworkAdapter -VM $ThisVM -Synthetic

To remove the virtual network adapter while the VM is running, execute the following PowerShell command:

$ThisVM = Get-SCVirtualMachine -Name "TestVM"
$ThisAdapter = Get-SCVirtualNetworkAdapter -VM $ThisVM
Remove-SCVirtualNetworkAdapter -VirtualNetworkAdapter $ThisAdapter

The new SCVMM 2016 features enable the deployment of Shielded VMs to authorized hosts. You can also deploy new VMs to authorized hosts when you create those VMs.

Storage Replica and SCVMM 2016

You can use the Storage Replica feature to replicate Hyper-V cluster files using synchronous replication, which enables data mirroring between physical sites with crash-consistent volumes for recovery purposes. You can use SCVMM 2016 to configure two data endpoints to replicate each other.

You can also deploy primary and secondary volumes in a single Hyper-V cluster or between two different Hyper-V clusters or two stand-alone Hyper-V clusters. Storage Replica with SCVMM 2016 reduces storage area network costs and helps you avoid complex configurations.

Apart from the SCVMM 2016 features mentioned above, Microsoft will continue to support Citrix XenServer, but it removed support for VMware vCenter 4.1 and 5.1.

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