Red Hat hypervisor tools to run on Windows only!

by Shijaz Abdulla on 09.09.2009 at 05:34

I read with interest a report on ZDNet this morning that the open source company Red Hat will initially offer its hypervisor management tools for Windows systems only.

According to the report, the company based its decision on the fact that Windows still leads as the operating system of choice for desktops.

A strange move this, especially from a company that usually takes the GPL (GNU Public license) route.

It is interesting to note that while Red Hat and VMware offer hypervisor management software only for their own respective hypervisors, Microsoft’s System Center suite offers hypervisor management for BOTH Hyper-V and VMware, physical machine management, virtual machine management, and application (workload) management – all integrated in a common platform – the System Center suite.

IT Evolution 08 @Abu Dhabi

by Shijaz Abdulla on 04.11.2008 at 15:40

The IT Evolution 08 event was held today at the Corniche Sheraton, Abu Dhabi. There were several informative sessions on Microsoft Virtualization technologies in the IT Pro track such as Hyper-V and Application Virtualization with SoftGrid/MDOP. The developer track included presentations on SQL Server 2008, Visual Studio .NET 2008 and Silverlight.

Partner presence included HP, Dell and Citrix. Yusuf Bismilla, Anton Delsink, Shahid Gaglani, and Amr El Garhy of Microsoft presented various topics.

Attendees were also given a chance to have their picture taken with the gaming character Master Chief from the Halo 3 game from Microsoft Game Studios.

Me with Master Chief of Halo 3 (left)

QicX event – Session 3 – 19th July – Doha

by Shijaz Abdulla on 19.07.2007 at 17:28

We had an awesome day today at Qicx – another action packed, highly interactive session. The venue was at the Qatar Red Crescent Society, Doha. Even though attendance was not as expected due to the holiday session, the excitement was unshaken.

I did the first session, and talked about System Center Virtual Machine Manager. I took the audience around Microsoft’s Dynamic Systems Initiative, Virtualization concepts, and discussed at length the Microsoft virtualization technologies – Virtual Server 2005 R2, Windows Virtualization Server, and System Center Virtual Machine Manager along with some live demos. The audience was great and the session was very interactive.

Boutros of ICT took the stage in the second session, continuing with his series of Exchange 2007 seminars. He took the audience around the Hub transport server role and MRM in Exchange 2007 with live demos. The session was very informative and resulted in productive discussions.

The two sessions went very well, and after a great meal, we had some group discussions. The event closed with a raffle draw, where people were asked to check under their seats to see if they had won. 🙂 Two lucky winners got prizes. Everybody who attended walked away with Windows Server 2008 Beta 3 DVDs and Forefront evaluation software.

Ankur, from Microsoft Consulting Services, Qatar is the founding member of QicX. He did a great job as always in arranging the whole event, inviting and managing the audience and sharing his expertise during the discussions. We think he’s cool. (yeah, we mean it!)

Oh yeah, and afterwards, we did this:
We jump-started Ankur’s 10 year old Wrangler which, in his words, “is a great car with a dead battery”.

Downloads/Resources from my presentation:

Meet the Windows Hypervisor

by Shijaz Abdulla on 13.07.2007 at 14:46

The Windows Hypervisor is one of the key design features of Microsoft’s enhanced virtualization platform. A hypervisor is a virtualization platform that allows multiple operating systems to run on them. The Windows hypervisor will run on the ‘bare-metal’ server hardware, and will ‘host’ multiple virtual machines over it. The supported server hardware for the hypervisor may be based on Intel VT or AMD-V.

Such a platform gives us the benefit of isolation, better security (smaller attack surface), better performance (no unnecessary services – Hypervisor runs on bare-metal). The Hypervisor manages only a minimum set of hardware on the physical host machine – processors, APICs, system counters and physical address space. The focus of the hypervisor will be on scheduling and isolation.

Windows Virtualization Services (WVS) will be launched not long after the Windows Server 2008 “Longhorn” release scheduled for later this year.

Windows Virtualization Services (WVS) will be an installable server role in the upcoming Windows Server 2008 (Longhorn) operating system. As of now, Microsoft plans to launch this functionality within 180 days of the release of Windows Server 2008.

Sitting on top of the hypervisor will be a parent partition or virtual machine that manages the rest of the physical host hardware such as IHV drivers, processor power management and hot-pluggable devices. This can run the Windows Server 2008 ‘Server Core’ with just the required functionality and low footprint/attack surface. The virtual machine guests talks to the Hypervisor via ‘hypercalls’.

Looks like VMWare ESX has got new competition!

System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM) is a management tool that supports managing virtual machines that run on Virtual Server 2005 R2 and, eventually, WVS. I will be talking about SCVMM on 19th July 2007 at Doha.