Linux

Red Hat goes for virtualization

Red Hat is geared up to take a bigger slice of the virtualization pie. Its plan? To build virtual machine management into the Linux operating system.

Red Hat announced its plan to develop management features for the management of virtual server environments in the enterprise at the Red Hat Summit in Boston last week. Indeed, Red Hat Enterprise Linux is expected to eventually come with a hypervisor built into the kernel, as well as management tools to support the enterprise.

These management tools will allow thousands of virtual machines to be created and managed -- without having to expand the ranks of Linux administrators.

In an interview with CEO Jim Whitehurst:

VMware’s the dominant player in an industry that’s what, like 5 or 10% penetrated? And it’s primarily in development and test scenarios, and primarily to reduce server sprawl.... We come from a different heritage. Our systems usually aren’t running at 10%. Linux workloads are a lot higher. The value from our perspective is less around server consolidation and more about what new functionality or architectures can be enabled by virtualization.

In addition, Red Hat also launched the beta for oVirt, a Linux-based hypervisor with a foot print of just 64MB. The hypervisor is based on KVM -- or kernel-based virtual machine, and is able to host both Linux and Microsoft Windows operating systems. More importantly, it supports important features such as live migration, which will allow applications running on virtual machines to be migrated -- even if it is to another physical box, without any downtime.

Will enterprise-grade Linux virtualization benefit your organization?

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

8 comments
paulmah
paulmah

Will enterprise-grade Linux virtualization benefit your organization?

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

We have only one person with Linux expertise, and we already have considerable time and training invested in VMware.

majoillo
majoillo

it is the same situation in our firm

NumloQ
NumloQ

Obvious KVM is integrated in the kernel and shares existing kernel components. Strange enough it runs faster than a physical machine but did not perform any tests with xen. We use slackware for our hosts.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Granted, I'm comparing OLPC's qemu appliance against VMware appliances so there are probably variables I'm not aware of. I also can't comment on XEN specifically though trying Virtualbox continues to send me back to VMware (better hardware support). Qemu does let you present a wide variety of cpu types too the guest program if that's your need though.

dagar
dagar

What are the benefits of KVM over XEN? What kind of performance hit did you have with running windows on top of kvm/qemu? What distro are you using for your host?

NumloQ
NumloQ

What is wrong with KVM/Qemu besides it should be one project? We are already successfully running Windows VM's in our datacenters with this great solution already built into the linux kernel. Work has to be done though, so time will tell

dagar
dagar

I have a rhel subscription and also use the free clone centos. I have started playing around with the virtualization shipping with rhel now. I am currently virtualizing some of our non critical systems on it. With rhel 5.2, they are updating the version of xen used along with some other things. This disadvantage was that you could not run windows unless with full virtualization. There is a project for paravirtual xen drivers for windows that is almost ready for production (maybe by July or August) http://wiki.xensource.com/xenwiki/XenWindowsGplPv So I am optimistic that Red Hat will deliver a good solution. I did not know about oVirt and I am looking into it now. (Hint: maybe a nice article on how that works in the real world would be nice :)

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