Tuesday, February 01, 2011
I'm reading: MS BI and Azure solution development using virtualization toolsTweet this !
Virtualization has become a very essential part of every IT professional who needs to deal with multiple systems / environments. While working with a MS BI solution, especially on a personal machine, virtualization is very much required to provide a sandboxed environment to different softwares that we use as a part of solution development. Betas, freewares, third party utilities, community projects, open source applications and other such applications are generally safe to install in a sandboxed environment, so that they do not inadvertently disturb the balance of your host system. Some of the tools that I generally use in my research and development environment are as below:
1) Virtual PC 2007 SP1 / Virtual PC for Windows 7, depending upon the kind of OS you use. Keep in view that you can install VPC on Win 7 only if you have Win 7 Professional or higher editions.
2) VirtualBox: It might come as a surprise to those who do not use VPC, that VPC does not support 64-bit OS. So if you intend to use a 64-bit OS for latest editions of softwares like Sharepoint 2010 / SQL Server Denali that has a requirement of a server OS or a 64-bit OS, use VirtualBox which is a freeware.
3) Azure Emulators: Windows Azure SDK comes with two emulators, Windows Azure Compute Emulator and Windows Azure Storage Emulator. If you do not have these emulators, the only option remains is to sign-up for an Azure account, for which of course you need to pay. A brief tutorial on the way to use these emulators can be read from here.
4) Freely available evaluation VHDs from Microsoft, can save a lot of time, effort and resources that you would spend on installation and configuration of softwares during RnD or similar phase / purpose.
I have multiple VPCs and VirtualBox images on my Win 7 and it helps me to sandbox each solution / software combination that I configure on a particular virtual machine. Try it out for yourself.