Hypervisor Platforms

In IT, it’s either you are the core platform or part of the platform ecosystem (or both). With respect to hypervisor platforms, it’s a four-horse race:

  1. Xen – Citrix
  2. KVM – Red Hat
  3. Hyper-V – Microsoft
  4. vSphere – VMware

As for Xen,

Every Linux kernel from 2.6.39 onwards will now contain the Xen hypervisor as it does KVM giving open source users a choice in hypervisors without having to take any additional steps. No longer will the KVM community have the argument that Xen is more difficult to use, as it is not in mainline Linux. Instead, open source consumers of virtualization can select from “an infrastructure abstraction independent of any OS (Xen) or as a component of your Linux distro (KVM).”

With respect to Joyent, SmartOS always has to follow KVM very closely because it does not hold the key to its development (Red Hat does). Unless Joyent has its own hypervisor component, it won’t grow as much as the competition. KVM is just a bolt-on solution of Joyent to accommodate guest OS support that is incompatible with its SmartOS containers. Joyent’s main philosophy is to continue innovate its SmartOS, vertical scaling and support customers who are lock-in with Solaris-based technology.


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