Novell is collaborating with VMware to improve Linux performance in VMware environments by incorporating support for the VMware Virtual Machine Interface (VMI) into the SUSE Linux Enterprise kernel.
Demonstrating their commitment to provide open interoperability and optimisation for virtualised environments, the companies have worked together to optimise SUSE Linux Enterprise for the VMware platform.
"Customers are looking to interchangeably deploy their server operating systems and their related workloads on both physical and virtual servers," says Al Gillen, research vice president, System Software at IDC. "The goal of any hypervisor is to deliver the flexibility of virtualisation accompanied by the performance delivered by a physical deployment. This joint effort directly addresses those requirements for SUSE Linux Enterprise customers."
Announced at VMworld in September 2007, the enhancements have been in development for the past nine months, and the code was released as part of SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP2 in May 2008.
As part of this collaboration, Novell has modified the SUSE Linux Enterprise kernel to support the VMware Virtual Machine Interface (VMI), a communication mechanism between the guest operating system and hypervisor that simplifies the task of virtualisation. Adding VMI patches to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server improves its efficiency as a virtualised operating system when running on VMI-compliant infrastructure and offers better interoperability by allowing the same kernel to run on physical machines. This simplifies virtualisation and makes SUSE Linux Enterprise Server a more efficient guest operating system when running on VMI-compliant hypervisors.
"VMware is pleased to be working with Novell to further increase the benefits of running SUSE Linux Enterprise on VMware Infrastructure," said Parag Patel, vice president, Alliances at VMware. "Performance is an important attribute for customers when virtualising their Linux systems. Working with Novell brings the benefits of virtualisation such as reduced costs, improved operational efficiencies and faster performance, to customers running SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 SP2."
Roger Levy, senior vice-president and GM for Open Platform Solutions at Novell, says: "Our collaboration with VMware deepens the business relationship between our companies, ensuring customers have the choice to run SUSE Linux Enterprise Server with optimal performance in physical or virtual environments. This is an important step forward in Novell's continued commitment to deliver the best engineered and most interoperable Linux platform for mission-critical computing from the desktop to the data centre."