When a computer system is virtualized, it is separated from the actual hardware and runs on a separate layer. It’s beneficial to desktop users because it allows them to run applications that require a different operating system without swapping computers or rebooting into another operating system. There are several virtualization software available in the market which helps in the creation of a virtual machine. In this article, we will install Hyper-V on Windows 10 home edition.
What is Hyper-V?
A Microsoft technology that allows users to run and administer several operating systems on a single physical server by creating virtual computer environments. Microsoft has extended Hyper-V capabilities to Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 in addition to Windows Server Operating Systems.
Use cases for Hyper-V
The following use cases will find the usage of implementing Hyper-V:
- Build or grow a private cloud infrastructure – Use shared resources and expand your use of them to make more flexible, on-demand IT services available.
- Effective usage of Hardware – Save power and space by consolidating servers and workloads onto more powerful physical computers.
- Smoother Business Continuity Plan – Save your resources and avoid wasting time by making your workloads’ downtime less impactful.
- Setup or extend a virtual desktop infrastructure, whether through simple desktop virtualization or a VDI server (VDI). A centralized desktop strategy with VDI can help you streamline regulatory compliance and manage desktop operating systems and applications while also increasing business agility and data security. The deployment of Hyper-V and RD Virtualization Host onto the same server allows you to provide your users with access to virtual desktops or virtual desktop pools.
- Streamline the development and the testing environment – By using only virtual computers, you can create and maintain various computing environments without acquiring or maintaining the hardware that physical computers would require.
Features of Hyper-V
- Sharing the computing environment of the host – A Hyper-V virtual machine has the same basic components as a physical computer. All of these parts include features and options that can be customized to match specific needs. Storage and networking are distinct categories due of the numerous configuration options.
- Backup and recovery – Hyper-V Replica makes replicas of virtual machines that can be restored from a copy. Hyper-V supports two methods of backup. So you can make application-consistent backups for programs that support VSS.
- Resource Optimization – Customized services and drivers, termed integration services, make it easy to use any supported guest operating system in a Hyper-V virtual environment.
- Portable VM – Live migration, storage migration, and import/export make moving or distributing a virtual machine simple.
- Remote connections – Hyper-V supports Virtual Machine Connection for Windows and Linux. Unlike Remote Desktop, this application lets you observe what’s going on in the guest even before the operating system boots.
- Security – Secure boot and shielded virtual machines help safeguard a virtual machine and its data from malware and other unauthorized access.
Install Hyper-V on Windows 10 Home
Windows 10 Professional and Enterprise editions are the only ones with Hyper-V. Windows 10 Home Edition does not come with it pre-installed. You will not have the Hyper-V option in the Turn Windows feature on or off menu. But there is a way to install Hyper-V on Windows 10 home. You can also read the article AWS Hyper-V to learn more about installing Hyper-V on AWS or our guide on Azure Hyper-v (Running Hyper-V in the cloud).
Now lets setup Hyper-V on Windows 10.
Requirements for Hyper-V on Windows 10
These are the Pre-requisites:
- Administrator access
- Virtualization enabled in BIOS.
- Internet connection
Check For Hardware Support
Before proceeding, we must determine whether our system is capable of virtualization. Hyper-V requires hardware virtualization to function properly. Alternatives are Virtualbox and VMWare, that can be used if Hyper-V can’t be enabled.
In the CMD or windows command console running the command systeminfo should display the hardware support along with the requirement for Hyper-V:
Here are the following requirements to run Hyper-V:
- VM Monitor Extensions should be available
- Virtualization should be enabled in the firmware or BIOS.
- Second Level Address Translation should be available.
- Data Execution Prevention should be available.
Apart from the requirements mentioned above, there should be at least 8GB of RAM, although Microsoft official documents say min of 4 GB RAM, having 8 GB RAM gives a consistent performance, and VMs run smoothly.
Suppose your hardware does not support virtualization technology. In that case, you will receive an error message, as shown in the above figure, when you try to install software that requires hardware virtualization enabled at the BIOS level. Softwares such as VMware, the android emulator will throw this message if hardware virtualization is not supported. This was the case with the old generation of intel based processor computers. These days almost 95% of the hardware support virtualization.
Enable Hardware Virtualization
To install Hyper-V, the first task is to enable hardware virtualization at the BIOS level. For this purpose, reboot your machine and enter the BIOS setup. Note that different manufacturers have different system keys to enter BIOS setup, shown at the reboot time. It can be either Esc or DEL or F11 or space or Enter or any Function Keys.
Once inside the BIOS, search for Intel Virtual Technology. Generally, this option is available under configuration in most PC. It is Disabled by default, as shown in the image above.
Enable it and save and exit the BIOS. The system will reboot.
Create a Hyper-V Enabler Batch File
This official Microsoft script enables automated downloads and activation of the Hyper-V feature.
pushd "%~dp0" dir /b %SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages*Hyper-V*.mum >hyper-v.txt for /f %%i in ('findstr /i . hyper-v.txt 2^>nul') do dism /online /norestart /add-package:"%SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\%%i" del hyper-v.txt Dism /online /enable-feature /featurename:Microsoft-Hyper-V -All /LimitAccess /ALL pause
Copy the script and paste it in a text file. Rename the file to Hyper-V Enabler.bat.
Execute the Hyper-V Enabler Batch File
Once the Hyper-V Enabler.bat file has been created, you must execute it as administrator as shown here.
When you run Hyper-V Enabler.bat file it will execute commands on cmd prompt and download the necessary files from the Microsoft repository.
Once the batch file has successfully run, restart your computer and wait for the updates. Do not interrupt during the process. It will take only a few minutes to update the windows system.
Check Optional Features
After the system has restarted, you might want to take a look at the optional features to validate whether the hyper-v option has been enabled for windows or not. This you can do by following the steps:
control panel–> Programs and Features –>Turn Windows Feature On or Off
Search for Hyper-V, and it should be now added to Turn Windows Features On or Off. Select both the boxes under Hyper-V as shown in the image and click OK After the selection, the OS will apply the changes in the system, and Hyper-V is activated in Windows Home.
Type Hyper-V in the search box and you should be able to see the Hyper-V feature enabled.
If Hyper-V Manager doesn’t show up in the search console, then you can also follow the steps to open the same.
Press Windows button + R and type the command virtmgmt.msc
So that’s how you install and activate Hyper-V on Windows 10 Home. With Hyper-V, you can create a virtual machine on Windows 10 and run Ubuntu, Windows 10X, or any other operating system on your computer.