Red Hat Updates Virtualization Platform

Red Hat has released an update of its Enterprise Virtualization platform (RHEV). Version 3.1, available now, updates the KVM hypervisor to support current industry-standard x86 processors, and expands the platform's ability to scale with support for guest VMs -- up to 160 logical CPUs and up to 2 terabytes of memory per virtual machine.

The company is throwing a spotlight on new integration of RHEV with Red Hat Storage, its scale-out, open-source storage solution for data management. Red Hat Storage is based on the GlusterFS technology the company acquired when it bought Gluster, Inc. in Oct. 2011. The company launched its version of the storage solution in June 2012.

GlusterFS is an open-source, distributed file system based on a stackable user space design. The system clusters storage building blocks over Infiniband RDMA or TCP/IP interconnect, the Web site explains, "aggregating disk and memory resources and managing data in a single global namespace." It's designed to scale to petabytes and thousands of clients.

This release also updates the user interface, adds an improved cross-platform web administration portal, enhances the reporting dashboard, and adds new networking capabilities and enhanced disk storage.

This is the first major update of the platform since the Raleigh, NC-based company released version 3.0 in January. That release updated the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) hypervisor at the core of the Red Hat offering, from version 5.7 to version 6.2. It also added Linux support (it already ran on Windows) and a new self-service portal for provisioning VMs, access via a RESTful API. Version 3.0 also added the ability to store data locally on client machines and, via integration with the company's open hybrid cloud management platform, CloudForms, a limited ability to manage hypervisors from other vendors.

With this release, the company is also announcing an update of CloudForms. Version 1.1 supports four additional languages, including Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese and Portuguese. The 1.1 release also incorporates a number of updates and fixes, the company said.

The president of Red Hat's product and technologies group, Paul Cormier, says RHEV is a key platform in his company's product portfolio. "The 3.1 release is an important milestone for the product," he said in a statement, "as it delivers key features and integrations that our customers are looking for..."

RHEV shares the same base KVM hypervisor technology as Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and maintains common ABI compatibility, which makes it easy to combine the two platforms from a single vendor.

Red Hat first announced its virtualization product strategy in February 2009. The company bills the open-source RHEV platform as an enterprise-ready virtualization management solution. The platform relies on a built-in open management infrastructure enabled by the libvirt open-source virtualization API. The libvirt API allows developers to use the same GUI with any virtualization technology that utilizes libvirt. For the enterprise, RHEV essentially becomes a substraight for private or internal clouds that can tie into other cloud providers who are basing their infrastructures on open source.

This release is available for download to subscribers now.. Red Had is also offering a fully supported, 60-day trial of this release.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].