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Configuring VM automatic power-on in VMware Server 2


VMware Server 2.0
has quite a different interface than previous versions of the popular
free hypervisor, and sometimes accessing familiar configurations becomes
more difficult with a new interface.

One difference between the prior 1.0.x versions of VMware Server and
the version 2 release is the virtual machine power-on settings.

In versions 1.0.x, the option to have a VM power on when VMware
Server boots was a property of the VM itself. With version two, this
property is actually a configuration value of the server. Further, there
are a good number of additional options around VM startup order with
VMware Server 2.

The first thing in configuring VM automatic power on is to go to the
‘Edit Virtual Machine Startup/Shutdown Settings’ configuration option
link from the top page of the VMware Infrastructure (VI) Web Access. The
figure below shows the area of the interface that this link is located:

Figure 1

In this area of VI Web Access, VMs can be configured to boot up
automatically when the server powers on. One of the great new features
of VMware Server 2 is that in this console, a sequence of VMs to be
automatically started can be configured. This is important for many
configurations where there are dependency services on one VM that
provides something like DNS and DHCP on the network to the other

In my VMware Server 2 implementation, there are two VMs configured to
automatically start when the server powers on. Further, the startup
delay can be configured for subsequent VMs. The figure below shows the
VMware Server startup and shutdown options panel:

Figure 2

The move of this configuration to a server property instead of being
per-VM is a good move for situations where VMware Server could carry
more critical workloads. The added functionality around startup
sequencing is also a welcome addition for better management options for
the product.

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