I’ve used Proxmox for two years in a homelab that serves as a sandbox for work projects, a testbed Active Directory network, and running home automation tools. It combines the familiarity of F/OSS tools like Debian Linux, QEMU, and KVM, with a graphical interface that makes managing virtual servers easy – with a community supported, free tier and paid support models.
Changes in Proxmox VE 8:
- Updated Kernel and Linux Base: The underlying Debian base has been updated to Debian 12 (Bookworm).
- Container Improvements: Proxmox VE 8 introduces numerous improvements for container deployments. It now includes full support for Cgroupsv2, which offers more fine-grained resource management and isolation. Additionally, the LXC version has been upgraded to LXC 4.0, bringing performance optimizations and improved compatibility.
- Ceph and Storage: The Ceph storage cluster integration has been enhanced with new features, making it easier to deploy and manage distributed storage resources. Proxmox VE 8 includes an updated version of Ceph (Octopus) with improved performance, stability, and monitoring capabilities.
- Networking Enhancements: Network configuration has been simplified with the addition of a new Network Configuration panel in the web interface. It provides a centralized location to manage network interfaces, bridges, VLANs, and bonds, making it easier to configure and monitor network connectivity.
- Improved Backup and Restore: Proxmox VE 8 introduces significant improvements to its backup and restore functionality. The new backup mechanism is faster and more efficient, allowing for reduced backup times and optimized storage usage. The restore process has also been streamlined, simplifying the recovery of VMs and containers.
- Security and Authentication: Proxmox VE 8 introduces support for two-factor authentication (2FA), adding an extra layer of security to the management interface. It helps protect against unauthorized access and enhances the overall security posture of the Proxmox VE environment.
More information is available at the following link: https://www.proxmox.com/en/news/press-releases/proxmox-virtual-environment-8-0
Upgrading from Proxmox VE 7 to Proxmox VE 8:
I upgraded my home lab to Proxmox VE 8 in approximately an hour, with limited downtime. Most of the time spent was moving my production workloads from one server to another while the upgrade took place. I have a 2-node cluster. Two of my VMs I wanted to keep running and ensure they weren’t affected by the upgrade, so I moved them off of Server1 to Server2, upgraded Server1, moved the VMs back to Server 1 and upgraded Server2.
One wrinkle I ran into was not being able to migrate the guest VMs back to Server1 – I received a host key verification failure. Running the following command on each server resolved the issue:
/usr/bin/ssh -e none -o 'HostKeyAlias=server-b-name' root@server-b-ip-address /bin/true
Run this command on the server with the host alias and IP address of the OTHER server.
Upgrading was simple. You can run the upgrade from the command line or the GUI. As with any upgrade, you’ll want to backup copies of any configuration files on your system. Backing up /etc and /var wouldn’t hurt.
From the command line:
- Run the
pve7to8command, looking for any errors/warnings in the output. I had one service that was stopped that I restarted before running the upgrade.
apt upgradeto upgrade all of your 7.1x apps to the latest versions.
apt dist-upgradeto start the upgrade process.
During the upgrade, you’ll be asked whether or not you want to automatically stop/restart processes. Since I moved my production workloads to my other server, I selected Yes. If you’ve changed any configuration files that are being replaced, you’ll be asked to review changes, accept the new version or keep the old version. I opted to accept the new versions. At the end of the upgrade, you’ll want to reboot as soon as possible to use the new kernel.
From the GUI:
- Update Packages: First, update the Proxmox VE 7 installation to the latest available packages. Log in to the Proxmox web interface, navigate to the “Updates” section, and click on “Update” to install any available updates.
- Upgrade Repository: Switch the repository to the Proxmox VE 8 repository. In the web interface, go to “Datacenter” > “Updates” > “Release Channel” and select “proxmox-ve-release-8.x”.
- Perform Upgrade: Once the repository has been updated, go to the “Updates” section and click on “Check” to retrieve the latest Proxmox VE 8 updates. Afterward, click on “Upgrade” to initiate the upgrade process.
- Follow the Wizard
By combining robust virtualization, extensive hardware support, clustering, backup and ease of use, Proxmox has made a great virtualization platform for enterprise and home use. I’m very happy with the platform and the level of improvement I see in Proxmox.