Hyper-V (offline) patch management is catching up.

VMware orientated people know the VMware update manager. With this tool/plug-in in vCenter you can automate patch management of VMware ESX hosts and virtual machines which eliminate manual tracking and patching. This also works for offline virtual machines. For Hyper-v Microsoft got the Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (VMST) which works in combination with WSUS or SCCM to get the same result.

A read a article of the VMST 3.0 version of the tool. This version is still in beta so maybe some futures will disappear in the final version. The current version 2.1 this tested guidance and automated tools let you service offline virtual machines in your SCVMM library. The new, still in beta, 3.0 version adds some powerful functions. Functions that already exist on a VMware platform. Then new functions are designed to streamline the process of keeping your offline virtual machines, templates and VHDs up-to-date with the latest operating system and application updates.  VMST 3.0 helps you manage updating your offline virtual machines according to their needs. When using VMST 3.0, you can live migrate the virtual machines within a cluster to another host so the there may be maintenance on the physical host. All this can be done automatically. The only think i am missing is the opportunity to make a snapshot before patching a virtual machine. Maybe i missed that with ready the articles . VMware has the same opportunities (and more) for some time now and is at version 4.0 update 1 patch 1.

For a VMware administrator with some history I though how did we accomplished that without update manager? It is great to see opponents trying to catch-up. I am curious what will be the answer of VMware, what more do we want form a update manager?

Info about Microsoft  VMST 3.0 Beta here  and here

Info about VMware Update manager

Offline VMware documentation tool

Some times when i am at a place without immediate internet access, Yes the do still exist, I fall back on the downloaded VMware documentation on my laptop. This is not always the latest and greatest and some time it is not on my laptop. And i am not the guy the keeps tracks on all the changes of the VMware documentaries. But i found a nice solution.

When i was searching for some Xen server documentation i notice a site that was new for me Xtravirt it is a nice virtualization portal with muti focus areas such as VDI, storage and Hypervisors. When browsing the site a noticed this nice tool the VMware Documentation Downloader. Tool? actually it is a script that use a program Wget this is a program that retrieves content from web servers. The result is a 750 MB folder with a part of the site and documents of VMware. You may browse the documents in the right panel like you are online.


Oke 750 MB is a lot but you can tune the script so you only get what you are interested in. I know there a more sophisticated tools for offline browsing like Black Widow but i like the idée.