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Understanding and Installing Hyper-V Integration Services

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The goal of this chapter of [[Hyper-V Essentials]] is to provide an overview of the Hyper-V Integration Services, provide a list of guest operating systems for which the services are available and, finally, cover the steps involved in installing the services on a guest operating system.
Hyper-V Integration Services are a set of processes that may be installed into supported guest operating systems to improve the performance and usability of that system running within a Hyper-V virtual machine. In some respects, Hyper-V Integration Services are analogous to the VMware Tools package used to improve the interaction of guest operating systems within the VMware virtualization infrastructure. This chapter will cover guest operating systems for which Integration Services are available, provide an overview of functions performed by the services. Finally, details of how to install the services on a supported guest operating systems will be covered.
== An Overview of Hyper-V Integration Services ==
Hyper-V Integration Services consists of a package of services which, when installed on a Hyper-V guest operating system, improve the performance and manageability of that system running within a Hyper-V virtualization environment. In this section we will take a look at each of the services provided as part of the overall many respects, Hyper-V Integration Services are analogous to the VMware Tools packageused to improve the interaction of guest operating systems within the VMware virtualization infrastructure.
The Hyper-V Integration Services provide a number of performance and usability enhancing features for Hyper-V based guest operating systems. These services are as follows:
== Installing Hyper-V Integrated Services ==
Before installing Hyper-V integration Services into a guest operating system it is important to understand that some Windows operating systems ship with Integration Services built in. Presently these operating systems are limited to Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. These two operating systems are able to detect the presence of the Hyper-V hypervisor and activate the Integration Services accordingly. Obviously, any Windows release which pre-dates the release of Hyper-V will be unaware that it is running on a hypervisor.
Despite the above caveat, it is still worth re-installing the Hyper-V Integration Services even on Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista guests. The reasons for doing so are two-fold. Firstly, integration services bundled with the guest operating system installation media may not be the latest shipping version. Secondly, the version of the Integration Services bundled with the current versions these operating systems do not include the Virtual Machine Connection enhancements outlined earlier in this chapter.
== Configuring Hyper-V Integrated Services ==
The Hyper-V Integration Services run as background services on the guest operating system and communicate with the parent partition. The method for viewing these running services differs slightly between the various guest operating system types. For example, the to view the services running on a Windows XP system, click on the ''Start'' menu, right click on the ''My Computer'' entry within the menu and select ''Manage'' from the popup menu to launch the ''Computer Management'' console. Within the management console select ''Services and Applications->Services'' to display a list of configured services. Scroll down this list until the ''Hyper-V'' services are visible as illustrated in the following figure:

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