You are currently viewing Part 03 – Hyper-V Environment

Part 03 – Hyper-V Environment

Organizing Hyper-V Folder Structure and Preparing Virtual Switches for a Microsoft Home Lab

In this article, we will set up our virtualization environment using Microsoft Hyper-V. This environment will house infrastructure components such as clients, servers, and more.

Microsoft Hyper-V is a powerful virtualization technology that comes with the Windows operating system. However, when you set up Hyper-V, it automatically sets default locations for all components such as virtual Disks, virtual machines, snapshots, etc., which can lead to disorganization. This article will guide you on creating a more organized folder structure and managing folders within Hyper-V.

While there are other virtualization products like VMware or Virtual Box, we will focus on Hyper-V



NOTE: Parent Disks and hard disks are interconnected. We are utilizing the differencing disk technologies. More context about this feature will be provided in a future blog post.

Hyper-V Installation and Default Locations

The first step is to install Hyper-V. Once the installation is complete, we will prepare the folder structure of Hyper-V


By default, Hyper-V automatically sets virtual disks, checkpoints, and machines’ locations.

Default Locations:

  • Virtual Hard Disks and Checkpoints (C:\Users\Public\Documents\Hyper-V\Virtual Hard Disks)
  • Virtual Machines (C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Hyper-V)

To avoid disorganization, we will create one root folder containing all components such as Virtual Machines, Virtual Disks, Checkpoints, etc.

The following is our new structure. Please recreate this structure on your computer.

  • Hyper-V (Root Folder) – Contains all components of Hyper-V
  • Hard Disks (Sub Folder) – Contains virtual hard drive of each virtual machine
  • Parents Disks (Sub Folder) – Contains Operating System of each virtual machine
  • Snapshots (Sub Folder) – Contains checkpoint of each virtual machine
  • Templates (Sub Folder) – Contains any potential Templates for our environment
  • Virtual Machines (Sub Folder) – Contains Virtual Machines

NOTE: Do not create a Virtual Machines folder. This folder will be automatically created when you provision a new virtual machine via the wizard

Next, we need to change the global default locations in Hyper-V. Specify the new Hard Disks folder. Do not specify the Virtual Machines folder as this folder will be automatically created.


Specify the Hard Disks folder.


Do not specify the Virtual Machines folder. This folder will be automatically created.

Hyper-V Virtual Switches

After the folder structure is created, we need to prepare network switches to ensure connectivity between virtual machines and provide internet access.

By default, every virtual machine uses a pre-created Default-Network-Switch. We will create two new switches:

  • Private Switch: Enables connectivity between virtual machines.
  • External Switch: Provides internet access.

High-Level Idea

The high-level idea is that we will use the RRAS Server to function as a router. RRAS will have both switches attached, but all other virtual machines will only have the private switch attached. RRAS will have the NAT (Network Address Translation) function enabled and will translate all IPs from the private to the external switch, providing internet access. More context will be provided in future blog posts.


That’s all for this blog post. In the next blog post, we will start preparing Windows templates. I will show you how to use Sysprep and differencing hard disks for easier deployment and to save some space.

See ya in the next blog post! 🙂

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