Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization promises more OpenStack integration

RHEV 3.4 beta adds greater integration with OpenStack, as well as more network management functionality and storage options

Red Hat just released a beta version of the latest rev of its server and desktop virtualization solution, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV). Based on KVM, which Red Hat acquired from Qumranet in 2010, Red Hat has revved RHEV roughly every six months, and the latest update ties right into another big-name Red Hat offering that's become almost as significant as RHEL itself: OpenStack.

Red Hat has made OpenStack a key part of its offerings, with nearly everything across its product line becoming either integrated into or complementary to OpenStack. RHEV is no exception, and while the added integration is incremental, it's still a sign of how OpenStack support will find its way into most Red Hat products, present and future.

Version 3.3, released in January, was already built to "[provide] an on-ramp to OpenStack" by working as a deployment solution for OpenStack services. That version added integration for OpenStack's Glance system imaging service and Neutron networking component, with the latter as a technology preview item. Version 3.4 promises to take Neutron out of preview status and make it full-blown, while also adding support for Open vSwitch and its SDN functionality.

Apart from the OpenStack integration, Red Hat is touting many other additions. Along with beefing up support for Neutron, Red Hat has added other networking functionality and simplified its management. RHEV 3.4 can also use a wider range of storage types -- Red Hat claims iSCSI, FCP, NFS, Posix, and Gluster can all be mixed and matched -- and RHEV's snapshotting functionality now allows more granular snaps.

Another major feature touted for 3.4 -- and one that hearkens back to a common theme with Red Hat -- is a slew of new management and automation functionality: scheduler enhancements, affinity controls, virtual CPU hotplugging, and persistent metadata for initializing new VMs based on existing preferences.

The reason Red Hat picks up on projects like OpenStack or KVM in the first place is twofold: 1) to take an existing open source project and create a useful enterprise product out of it; and 2) to keep the open source roots of the project whenever possible. Red Had originally offered either Xen or KVM as hypervisor solutions, but in 2010 the company switched to KVM full time, both for the sake of only needing to maintain one codebase and as a way to leverage what Red Hat felt was a more mature, next-generation hypervisor technology -- and to get the maximum value out of the Qumranet development team Red Hat had acquired.

InfoWorld's Paul Venezia looked at RHEV back in 2011 and pronounced it good, but quirky. Later versions have edged closer to taking on vSphere and Hyper-V. If you want to see for yourself, Red Hat offers a 60-day trial of RHEV, with support included.

This story, "Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization promises more OpenStack integration," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

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