For managing Hyper-V servers, virtual networks, storage and virtual machines customers are required to buy the complete Microsoft System Center Suite. System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM), which is used for management of Hyper-V, is not available as a separate product. Customers have to buy the complete suite including backup, monitoring and deployment tools.
For small organizations the costs of System Center can be unattractive especially because they get functionality they probably either already have or will not need. Not every organization needs Configuration Manager or Operations Manager.
5nine Manager 5.0 for Hyper-V is a nice alternative to buying the full blown System Center suite . Version 5 has been released end of June. Even if Hyper-V is not used this product is usefull. If Windows Server Core (no GUI) is used 5nine Manager offers a GUI to manage those servers.
The product has some unique features like the ability to manage the Hyper-V role installed on Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 which Microsoft Hyper-V Manager nor SCVMM is able to.
Another very nice feature is the ability to manage the free Microsoft Hyper-V Server. This software once installed does not come with a graphical userinterface. Basic configuration can be done in a command prompt. Advanced configuration needs to be performed using tools like PowerShell. 5nine Manager offers a graphical userinterface for Hyper-V installs without a GUI.
It is available in three editions:
- 5nine Manager free edition
- 5nine Manager
- 5nine Manager with antivirus.
The free edition only allows to do basic management. Actions like performing a Live Migration or a Storage Migration are not enabled in the free edition. However it offers some features not available in Microsoft Hyper-V manager console.
5nine Manager commercial edition has all features you want as an administrator.
5nine Manager with antivirus has all features of 5nine Manager including agentless antivirus for virtual machines.
A feature compare can be seen here.
What’s new in 5nine Manager 5.0 for Hyper-V
- Automated virtual machine (VM) provisioning
- Enhanced cluster management
- VMs Guest connection views through FreeRDP or Microsoft controls
- Support in the GUI for configuration of Hyper-V Replica which enables failover of production workloads to a secondary site for disaster recovery
- Group operations for multiple VMs
- Applications Logs
Additionally, 5nine Manager for Hyper-V performs the following features that are absent in the
standard MS Hyper-V management tool:
- Own graphical user-friendly interface – file manager with built-in transfer virtual hard drive with a capacity up to 127 Gb for exploring files and network shares, even on Windows Core and Free Hyper-V.
- Quality of Service management – setting of minimum and maximum Input Output operations per second (IOPS) throttling for the virtual hard disk attached to a virtual machine (applies for hosts with Windows Server 2012 R2)
- System Status Report presented in the intuitive graphical form. Available in the full version of 5nine Manager for Hyper-V.
- Failover cluster manager function, such as VM migration between nodes. Available in the full version of 5nine Manager for Hyper-V.
5nine Manager 5.0 for Hyper-V is available immediately. It is priced per host, and pricing begins at $199
The administrators guide (for version 4.2) can be found here.