Every year LinuxWorld expands space dedicated to virtualization technologies. This new 2007 edition, taking place in San Francisco, CA, from 6 to 9 of August, exposes a complete track for the topic, with some interesting sessions presented by XenSource, VMware, Microsoft, rPath and other vendors:
- Can Open Source Virtualization Catch Up (Or Is It Already Ahead?)
The open source Xen project has hit the headlines a great deal as the various Linux distributions bring their Xen-based products to market. Millions of copies of Xen have been distributed, and Xen is now used to virtualize demanding production workloads in major enterprises such as Amazon. What’s the next step for Xen? Should it focus on better integration in Linux, or add features that strengthen its play as a platform hypervisor? What is Xen’s real edge in the market against Microsoft’s forthcoming hypervisor and the popular proprietary VMware products? How do customers want to consume their virtualization? Xen as a platform hypervisor lacks the fit and finish of VMware’s ESX, but do customers want to consume virtualization from their OS vendor instead, and if so, is VMware relevant, and why is Microsoft so late? This session will answer all of these questions and more.
- How Secure is Your Virtualized Network?
Although virtualization will drive down hardware costs and increase server utilization, it will also create new management and security challenges. Server sprawl will be replaced with “virtual server sprawl”. New vectors are vulnerable to attack at the management, hypervisor, I/O and hardware levels. Instead of targeting physical machines for profit and access to critical data, malicious internet hackers will target virtual machines instead. Security must uniquely protect virtual servers, networks, and data without constraining the innovation and flexibility virtualization brings with it into the data center. This session will cover unique ways to deliver security to physical networks, servers and endpoints as well as their virtual counterparts in the future.
- Linux and Windows Interoperability: On the Metal and On the Wire
Today, leading virtualization solutions are provided by a mix of Xen-enabled Linux and Windows-based solutions running in mixed environments. As part of a broader interoperability collaboration, Microsoft and Novell technical experts are architecting and testing new virtualization scenarios to jointly develop the most compelling virtualization offering in the market for Linux and Windows. This talk will cover two major components of the future of Linux and Windows interoperability: Virtualization (“On the Metal”) and Web Services protocols (“On the Wire”). We’ll cover the virtualization interoperability work being done between the Longhorn Server hypervisor, Viridian and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and Xen, and also the details and challenges of implementing standards specifications, such as WS-Federation and WS-Management.
- Case Study: How Virtualization Impacts Systems Management
Virtualization is generating genuine excitement in the IT community. Over the long term, this new approach to managing resources may cause a fundamental transformation of IT operations. However, virtualizing servers is in fact only the first step toward achieving real Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) improvements. Improved server utilization does help lower acquisition costs, but those savings may be relatively insignificant compared to the ongoing costs of managing the infrastructure needed to host workloads, including operating systems, applications, networks, patches, and software updates. How does the adoption of virtualization affect the way that systems are managed? In an effort to answer this question, Ideas International recently interviewed 50 users who had deployed virtualization about their requirements for managing virtualized infrastructures. This session will summarize the results of these interviews, providing a snapshot of the impact that virtualization has in a variety of real-world environments today.
- Panel Discussion: Xen and KVM – Separating Fact from Fiction
Join key Xen and KVM developers who will gather to provide their insight into the strengths and weakness of the two most visible open source virtualization technologies. The moderator will guide the discussion into the technical details of the KVM and Xen architecture and implementation and help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of each. This discussion will also cover the gaps that exists today and what is needed for Linux virtualization going forward.
- Panel Discussion: Virtualization and Blades: Complementary or Competitive?
This session will demystify these two very topical technologies by directing the panelists with hard hitting questions, with a specific focus on what capabilities are ready for prime time today, which capabilities are still immature, what benefits that users are truly realizing today. This discussion will also cover where virtualization and blades complement one another and where they overlap, and what we can expect to see in the next twelve months.
- How Virtualization Enables and Threatens Software as a Service
Gone are the days of the annual release cycle. Software companies need to operate with rapid releases while maintaining high quality and tight integration. For Software as a Service (SaaS) companies, weekly releases are the new standard. Meanwhile, virtual appliances promise faster software deployment for all software, especially open source. Where do these two trends help each other? And where do they compete? This session will answer these questions and more.
- Making Linux a Virtualization-Friendly OS
A variety of technologies, such as binary translation, paravirtualization, and hardware assist, are available for virtualizing x86 servers and operating systems. This talk will provide an overview of some of these technologies and how they are used to virtualize operating systems such as Linux. Being an open source OS, Linux stands to benefit tremendously from community awareness of the specific challenges and opportunities that exist for operating systems running in a virtual environment. This talk will provide an update on community efforts to increase the performance and portability of Linux in a virtual machine, highlighting examples of collaboration between hypervisor developers and the Linux community. We will discuss techniques that are supported in VMware products, in Linux distros, and in the mainline Linux kernel. The talk will also highlight future trends in virtualization, including ones that are directly of interest to the Linux community.
- Panel Discussion: The End of the General Purpose OS
Until recently, the computing world has been dominated by The General Purpose OS. This model uses a one-size-fits-all approach, dictating that software be certified for a specific platform, and forcing developers to spend a great deal of time and expertise ensuring compliance with specific OS requirements. Upon realizing the constraints of such a model, the tech industry has undergone a major shift toward virtualization, a more promising platform for application developers, with 2006 ending as arguably the year of virtualization. As more companies embrace virtualization and its associated business benefits, the next era has already begun and 2007 will be the year of the virtual appliance. Virtual appliances and software appliances wrap applications in an extremely customized (and therefore small) OS, and play on industry-standard hardware or in a virtualized environment. Billy Marshall and Erik Troan will provide insight on virtualization’s impact on the software industry, as well as why the general purpose OS will soon be dead, giving way to virtual appliances.
Beside these sessions LinuxWorld 2007 is going to be interesting also for expected Diane Greene, VMware President, keynote, which will cover upcoming evolutions of virtualization technologies. A new product or technology to be announced?
Register for it here.
The virtualization.info Events Calendar has been updated accordingly.