Since months now a serious number of companies and open source contributors is looking at Red Hat to understand its new virtualization strategy.
The company took a major step in June when it thrown out of window years of efforts on Xen to fully replace it with KVM.
Just two months after, Red Hat acquired Qumranet, the company that started KVM, that maintains it, that managed to inject it into the Linux kernel, and that sells a very interesting VDI solution.
What Red Hat wants to do now with KVM and Qumranet (somebody hopes that their highly performing VDI protocol SPICE will be open sourced) is critical to understand what chances has Linux to impose itself as a valuable virtualization platforms against the popular hypervisors ESX (offered by VMware) and Xen (offered by every other vendor except Microsoft).
Some hints of the new strategy surface in a recent interview that InformationWeek arranged with Jim Whitehurst, the Red Hat CEO:
Q: What is Red Hat’s strategy with virtualization?
A: …We’ll be offering both server and desktop virtualization. The first use-case of server consolidation is just the tip of the iceberg. There’s a long-term use for grids of servers running large numbers of desktops. We plan to be the leading virtualization vendor based on the server operating system…
Q: What about cloud computing?
A: Clouds will run Linux.
It’s clear that Red Hat sees in KVM a huge opportunity to differentiate from Citrix, Virtual Iron, Oracle and its worst competitor Novell.
Now the company has to to execute in a much better way that how it did with Xen.