If you installed the 64bit edition of Windows Server 2008 it is possible to integrate virtualization of 32bit and 64bit guest operating systems into your Operating System. In order to use this you need a processor that supports hardware assisted virtualization. To check if your processor is supported check the Troubleshooting section. Be aware that installing the Hyper-V Server Role could lead to a huge performance drop! (See also the forum)
To install Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 64bit, do the following steps:
1. Start the Server Manager by clicking the Server Manager icon in the systray, or the Server Manager shortcut in directly the Start menu or in the menu Administrative Tools.
2. In the Server Manager click below the category Roles Summary on Add Roles.
3. At the Before You Begin page click Next.
4. Check the Hyper-V role and click Next.
5. Review the introduction and notes and click Next.
6. At the Create Virtual Network page check your internet connection network card to have internet in your virtual pc’s, or leave it to leave your virtual pc’s offline. Then click Next.
7. Review the roles to install and your settings, then click Next.
8. After installing the Hyper-V serverrole, click Yes to restart your computer.
9. After the computer has restarted the Hyper-V setup will be completed. After the installation has completed click Close to finish the wizard.
10. To create, start and configure virtual pc’s go to the Server Manager as described in step 1, expand Roles -> Hyper-V -> Microsoft Hyper-V Servers and finally click your computername.
My own Hyper-V installation
Directly after the Hyper-V Serverrole installation had finished I tried starting a virtual machine, but got the message “The virtual machine could not be started because the hypervisor is not running.”. I looked this error up on the internet, and it came out that I had an old version of my bios software (< stepping 3). Your processor needs at least stepping 3 to run Hyper-V. To check which stepping you currently have download and run CPU-Z from http://www.cpuid.com/.
To upgrade the bios I went to the support site of my motherboard and downloaded the newest version of my bios. First I created a Windows startup disk. After creating the startup disk I extracted the files m56ss3.f4e and FLASH895.EXE to that floppy. Next I rebooted my pc and booted up from the floppy. After the I got the command prompt of the startup disk I entered the following command flash895 m56ss3.f4e to upgrade my bios software. After the upgrade had completed I reset the pc, went to the bios and Enabled hardware virtualization.
“Now my Hyper-V MUST work” I thought, but after clicking Start of a Virtual Machine I again got the message “The virtual machine could not be started because the hypervisor is not running.”!! I did some research, and I found that the hypervisor was not added to my Boot Environment. To add the hypervisor to the boot environment start the command prompt and enter the following command: BCDEdit /set hypervisorlaunchtype auto. After you get response “The operation completed successfully.”, reboot your system and Hyper-V should work now! If not, take a look in your Hyper-V Event Viewer (See Troubleshooting) and try to find out what the problem is.
Question: How can I see if my CPU supports Virtualization?
Question: After creating a new Virtual Machine in the Hyper-V section in the Server Manager and clicking Start, I get the error message: “The virtual machine could not be started because the hypervisor is not running.”
Answer: The Hyper-V hypervisor needs to be running. If it isn’t running there are probably errors when starting the service. Errors of the Hyper-V Server Role can be found in the Server Manager under Diagnostics -> Event Viewer -> Custom Views -> Server Roles -> Microsoft Hyper-V. Search the error messages at google or in the Server Virtualization section at the Technet Forums.