How-to Upgrade to Hyper-V Release Candidate

A few weeks ago we've released Hyper-V Release Candidate we've made quite some improvements read them on the virtualization blog, the one I want to focus on are the additional guest OS support and how to upgrade your beta environment.

Additional Guest OS support:

  1. Hyper-V RC now includes support for Windows Server 2003 (x86) SMP
  2. Hyper-V RC now includes support and integration components for Windows Vista SP1 (x86) and Windows XP SP3 (x86)

As you can see we now have also the integration components for Vista SP1 (x86) which are the ones I was waiting for to be able to move all my VM's towards Hyper-V. I'm using Hyper-V for quite a while now and don't want to go back to Virtual Server because it's so much faster.

So the first thing I did was upgrade my Hyper-V beta towards the Hyper-V RC by downloading the update from

This update contains the Hyper-V RC but also the New Integration Services for Windows Server 2003 SP2, Windows Vista SP1 and Windows XP SP3.

Once installed you need to reboot your server and you then have a Hyper-V RC server.

That's all? No not yet if you already had some virtual machines running like I did you need to perform some additional steps as mentioned in the following Knowledge base article: KB949222.

Basically if you try to launch one of the Virtual Machines it will fail with the following error message:

"An error occurred while attempting to chance the state of the virtual machine vmname.
‘vmname’ failed to initialize.
Failed to read or update VM configuration"

Note If the virtual machine is running a prerelease version of Windows Server 2008, the operating system .vhd file must be re-created.

In the next steps I'll explain what I've did to make my VM's running on Hyper-V RC:

  1. Download the Updates for Windows Server 2008 (x86 and x64) KB949219, if possible create an iso file including those updates.
  2. Take Note all settings of the Virtual Machines you have
  3. Make sure you have all IP configuration settings written down (if you don't use DHCP like me) because you will need to configure the TCP/IP settings
  4. Delete all snapshots and saved states of the virtual machines
  5. Delete Virtual Machine configuration from the Hyper-V console
  6. Recreate the Virtual Machines in the Hyper-V console according to the settings you wrote down in step 1.
  7. Start the Virtual machine and if your VM is a Windows Server 2008 then load the iso file which contains the updates
  8. Install the updates and reboot the machines
  9. Reconfigure the Network configuration settings

Repeat those steps for all your VM's based on Windows Server 2008. If you have Windows Server 2003 SP2, Windows XP SP3 or Windows Vista SP1 virtual machines then you don't need to load the ISO file but just install the Integration services.

Note: If you can't create an ISO with the update files I would recommend you to add a legacy network adapter onto the Virtual Machines to let you download the updates from another machine, once update delete the legacy network adaptor and add a Network based on the VMBus technology to your VM.

Technorati Tags: Hyper-V,Virtualization,Windows Server 2008