System requirements / specifications for Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008

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July 18, 2011 by Rakesh Boraiah


  • Host Operating system:
    1. To install the Hyper-V role, Windows Server 2008 (64-bit only) or 2008 R2 Standard, Enterprise or Datacenter edition is required. Installation on the Web and/or Foundation editions is not possible; neither is it possible on 32-bit (x86-32) versions of Windows Server 2008 nor IA64 editions.
    2. It can be installed regardless of whether the installation is a full or core installation.
  • Processor:
    1. An x86-64 processor
    2. Hardware-assisted virtualization. This is available in processors that include a virtualization option; specifically, Intel VT or AMD Virtualization (AMD-V, formerly code-named “Pacifica”).
    3. A NX bit-compatible CPU must be available and Hardware Data Execution Prevention (DEP) must be enabled.
    4. Although this is not an official requirement, Windows Server 2008 R2 and a CPU with Extended Page Table support are recommended for workstations.
  • Memory
    1. Minimum 2 GB. (Each virtual OS requires its own memory, and so realistically much more.)
    2. Windows Server 2008 Standard (x64) Hyper-V full GUI or Core supports up to 31 GB of memory for running VMs, plus 1 GB for Hyper-V Parent OS.
    3. Maximum total memory per system for Windows Server 2008 R2 hosts: 32 GB (Standard) or 2 TB (Enterprise, Datacenter).
  • Guest operating Systems
    1. Hyper-V supports virtual machines with up to 4 processors (1, 2, or 4 processors depending on guest OS-see below).
    2. Hyper-V supports up to 384 VMs per system.
    3. Hyper-V supports both 32-bit (x86) and 64-bit (x64) guest VMs.
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