Windows Client 8 Hyper-V Virtual Fibre Channel vs Windows Server 8 Hyper-V Synthetic Fiber Channel HBA’s is not supported on a client SKU that is on a windows 8 client

Overview of Windows Server 8 Hyper-V 3.0 features What it is and what you can not do.

The Windows 8 client hyper-v 3.0 role is not the same as the Windows Server 8 Hyper-V Role. If you look at one item in particular the File channel than there is a change first it was not in windows 2008 R2 ! you can now do npiv this is great mount direct FC Lun’s to your VM.  But first a preview of the fiber channel.

Hyper-V Virtual Fibre Channel Technical Preview

You need your virtualized workloads to connect easily and reliably to your existing storage arrays. Windows Server “8” Beta provides Fibre Channel ports within the guest operating system, which allows you to connect to Fibre Channel directly from within virtual machines. This feature protects your investments in Fibre Channel, enables you to virtualize workloads that use direct access to Fibre Channel storage, allows you to cluster guest operating systems over Fibre Channel, and provides an important new storage option for servers hosted in your virtualization infrastructure.

The virtual Fibre Channel feature in Hyper-V requires the following:

  • One or more installations of Windows Server “8” Beta with the Hyper-V role installed. Hyper-V requires a computer with processor support for hardware virtualization.
  • A computer with one or more Fibre Channel host bus adapters (HBAs) that have an updated HBA driver that supports Virtual Fibre Channel. Updated HBA drivers are included with the in-box HBA drivers for some models, as listed in the following table.
  • Virtual machines configured to use a virtual Fibre Channel adapter, which must use Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server “8” Beta as the guest operating system.
  • Connection only to data logical unit numbers (LUNs). Storage accessed through a virtual Fibre Channel connected to a LUN cannot be used as boot media.

NPIV support

Virtual Fibre Channel for Hyper-V guests uses the existing N_Port ID Virtualization (NPIV) T11 standard to map multiple virtual N_Port IDs to a single physical Fibre Channel N_port. A new NPIV port is created on the host each time you start a virtual machine that is configured with a virtual HBA. When the virtual machine stops running on the host, the NPIV port is removed.

Virtual SAN support

Hyper-V allows you to define virtual SANs on the host to accommodate scenarios where a single Hyper-V host is connected to different SANs through multiple Fibre Channel ports. A virtual SAN defines a named group of physical Fibre Channel ports that are connected to the same physical SAN. For example, assume that a Hyper-V host is connected to two SANs—a production SAN and a test SAN. The host is connected to each SAN through two physical Fibre Channel ports. In this example, you might configure two virtual SANs—one named “Production SAN” that has the two physical Fibre Channel ports connected to the production SAN and one named “Test SAN” that has two physical Fibre Channel ports connected to the test SAN. You can use the same technique to name two separate paths to a single storage target.

You can configure as many as four virtual Fibre Channel adapters on a virtual machine and associate each one with a virtual SAN. Each virtual Fibre Channel adapter connects with one WWN address or two WWN addresses to support live migration. You can set each WWN address automatically or manually.


Now that we know what it does lets see how it works.

First in the settings you can add a fiber channel switch image

You can also edit the adresses ( WWN )World Wide Node Names and World Wide Port Name ( WWPN) as known as port address, you can copy them to the clipboard with the copy command.

image  image

But what if you do this on a client ? You easily would miss this and you can wonder if you need this on a client, this is most used for demo’s etc but what if you copy the machine from a server and then run it on your client. Well You get this


Synthetic Fiber Channel HBA’s is not supported on a client SKU that is on a windows 8 client. So I do not need support on my client Winking smile eh no it won’t run ! So think about this if you want to show this you need server. But remember is it a beta and it can be changed during the beta.


Why this is is unclear what else is different on the client lets find out in the next blogs. Well I run now Datacenter as hyper-v server

Well for starters you can’t upgrade a VHD that is running windows 2008R2 that is boot from VHD !

Upgrading an operating system in a virtual disk is not supported.

Think your plan ! rebuild your new machines is better than an upgrade is the microsoft message to avoid problems. and I must say it is much faster also.

Posted March 6, 2012 by Robert Smit in Windows 8, Windows 8 Server

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