Red Hat formally announced at a press event in San Francisco last week its Integrated Virtualization strategy, aimed at simplifying CPU virtualization deployment for RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) customers. The initiative includes integration of virtualization software, known as a “hypervisor,” into Red Hat’s Linux kernel, as well as the formation of a Virtualization Resource Center to support customer efforts.
“Customers want to treat virtualization as an architectural element and treat it as a commodity,” said Red Hat CTO Brian Stevens, adding that integrated virtualization marks “a day in the evolution of the RHEL platform.”
Fedora Core 5, the version of Red Hat’s community-driven Linux distribution targeted for release this week, will feature a preview of the new virtualization features, which are based on the open source Xen technology from Red Hat partner XenSource. RHEL 5, due by the end of the year, will fully integrate the Xen hypervisor. Pricing was not disclosed.
According to Frank Artale, vice president of business development at XenSource, Red Hat’s contributions will also be beneficial to the Xen software itself. VMware has dominated the x86 virtualization market thus far. Red Hat hopes that integration of the Xen hypervisor into RHEL will help to broaden, and in some cases create, the market for virtualization in Linux operating systems.