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Workgroup's dedicated Citrix division has announced local implementation Citrix's Project Kensho, which will delivery Open Virtual Machine Format (OVF) tools that, for the first time, allow independent software vendors (ISVs) and enterprise IT managers to easily create hypervisor-independent, portable enterprise application workloads.

These tools will allow application workloads to be imported and run across Citrix XenServer, Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and VMware ESX virtual environments.
So says Maike Liebenberg, Citrix product manager at Workgroup, who adds that as virtualisation becomes a mainstream component of enterprise IT infrastructure, users need ways to automate and secure the lifecycle of their application workloads without being tied to a single hypervisor platform or virtual hard disk format.
"By implementing the Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) OVF standard, Project Kensho will enable ISVs and enterprise IT staff to leverage a hypervisor-independent portable virtual machine format that packages a complete application workload as a secure, portable, pre-configured open standard virtual appliance," she says.
"This will solve a multitude of interoperability issues between virtualisation platforms while allowing automated provisioning and management of applications, rather than just virtual machines.
"Users will easily be able to install and use any OVF packaged application workload regardless of which virtualisation platform they use – whether it be XenServer, Hyper-V or ESX."
Project Kensho will also enable customers to leverage the interoperability benefits and compatibility between long-time partners Citrix and Microsoft to extend the Microsoft platform. For example, XenServer is enhanced with CIM-based management APIs to allow any DMTF-compliant management tool to manage XenServer, including Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager.
"Because the tools are based on a standard framework, customers are ensured a rich ecosystem of options for virtualisation," says Liebenberg. "In addition, because of the open-standard format and special licensing features in OVF, customers can seamlessly move their current virtualised workloads to either XenServer or Hyper-V, enabling them to distribute virtual workloads to the platform of choice while simultaneously ensuring compliance with the underlying license requirements for each virtual appliance."
Project Kensho will support the vision of the Citrix Delivery Center product family, helping customers transform static datacenters into dynamic delivery centres for the best performance, security, cost savings and business agility.
The tools developed through Project Kensho will be easily integrated into Citrix Workflow Studio based orchestrations, for examples, to provide an automated environment for managing the import and export of applications from any major virtualisation platform.