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Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (VMST) 3.0

Published: December 08, 2008   |   Updated: September 27, 2010

 

What’s New

This release of the Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (VMST) 3.0 completely replaces the Offline Virtual Machine Servicing Tool version 2.1.

VMST 3.0 helps customers reduce IT costs by making it easier to update their offline virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks with the latest operating system and application patches—without introducing vulnerabilities into their IT infrastructure.

Version 3.0 of the tool works with System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 R2, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 SP2, and Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP2. The tool also supports updating the Windows® 7 and Windows Server® 2008 R2 operating systems.

Download This Solution Accelerator

Click here to download the Virtual Machine Servicing Tool 3.0.

About This Solution Accelerator

The increasing use of virtual machines—for purposes ranging from support of older operating system environments to power savings—has created new challenges for IT.

In particular, virtual machines may be left offline (stored in a non-operating state) for extended periods of time, which conserves resources when the server capacities of the virtual machines are not needed or frees up physical computing resources for other purposes.

However, offline machines, templates, and virtual hard disks do not automatically receive operating system, antivirus, or application updates that would keep them compliant with current IT policy. An out-of-date virtual machine may pose a risk to the IT environment. If deployed and started, the out-of-date virtual machine might be vulnerable to attack or could be capable of attacking other network resources.

Therefore, IT groups must take measures to ensure that offline virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks remain up-to-date and compliant. At present, these measures involve temporarily bringing the virtual machine online, applying the necessary updates, and then storing it again.

Benefits

VMST 3.0 helps you more effectively—and safely—manage the workflow of updating you offline virtualization environment. Using VMST 3.0, you can now service:

  • Offline virtual machines in a SCVMM library.
  • Stopped and saved state virtual machines on a host.
  • Virtual machine templates.
  • Offline virtual hard disks in a SCVMM library by injecting update packages.

Included in the Download

The Virtual Machine Servicing Tool 3.0 includes the following components:

  • Virtual Machine Servicing Tool (msi)
  • Virtual Machine Servicing Tool: Getting Started Guide
  • Virtual Machine Servicing Tool: Release Notes

In More Detail

Using the Virtual Machine Servicing Tool

The Virtual Machine Servicing Tool 3.0 manages the workflow of updating large numbers of offline virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks according to their individual needs. To do this, the tool works with Microsoft® System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) 2008 or 2008 R2 and with either of the following software update management systems:

  • Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) 3.0 SP1 or WSUS 3.0 SP2
  • System Center Configuration Manager 2007, Configuration Manager 2007 SP1, SP2 or Configuration Manager 2007 R2

The Virtual Machine Servicing Tool 3.0 is straightforward to use. To use the tool:

  1. Install the tool in your environment. A configuration wizard guides you through the process of connecting the tool to VMM and your software update management system.
  2. Configure virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks groups. You have the option to group your virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks to simplify the process of creating servicing jobs.
  3. Create and schedule servicing jobs. A servicing job specifies which virtual machines, templates, and virtual hard disks to update, what resources to use for the update process, and when to start the servicing job. You can schedule jobs to run immediately, or to run during low-traffic maintenance windows. You can also schedule servicing jobs to recur at regular intervals to keep your virtual machines up-to-date in the long term.

Note   The tool works with Windows Task Scheduler to determine when to run the servicing job.

Related Resources

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