Feeds

Citrix's 'Kensho' tools shed earthly hypervisor restraints

Seeks application workload Nirvana

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Citrix Systems is developing a set of Open Virtual Machine (OVM) format tools that will let virtualized applications jump across different hypervisors.

Dubbed Project Kensho, the tools will be released as a technical preview for download by the end of this quarter. The code allows pre-configured virtual applications (viz. virtual appliances) to run across Citrix XenServer, Microsoft Hyper-V, and VMware ESX hypervisors.

Citrix reckons Kensho will help companies handle a mix of virtulization software in their data centers. That's something Citrix says will become more common as x86 virtualization becomes mainstream. It's also a kindly gesture to Microsoft, a long-time partner of Citrix and a newly arrived combatant in the serious server virtualization space. Add this altogether, and you find Citrix trying to get a foot in the door of shops currently running the market leader, VMware.

Although Citrix paints the project as hypervisor independent, there's currently no word about support for Oracle, Red Hat, and Sun virtualization platforms. (We put that in to be polite.)

The OVF specification was originally penned by Citrix (or rather XenSource before it was acquired) and VMware with contributions from Microsoft, IBM, HP, and Dell. The format was submitted to the Distributed Management Task Force in 2007, which accepted the draft proposal.

OVF unites the three virtualization platforms together in an XML package that holds all the necessary installation and configuration parameters. This allows any virtualization house that implements the standard to run hypervisor-agnostic virtual machines.

According to VMware, its own file format VMDK differs in that it only encodes a single virtual disk from a virtual machine. VMDK does not contain information about the virtual hardware of the machine. In contrast, the OVF format provides a complete specification of the virtual machine. ®

Bootnote

Kensho is a Buddhist term for glimpsing enlightenment by perceiving your true nature. It's often used to describe an initial awakening to the essence of the mind and perceiving one's self as impermanent and ever-changing.

We assume Citrix doesn't intend for the project to live up to the title, as ISV employees who shed earthly attachments and break free from the eternal wheel of Samsara on a journey to enlightenment tend to neglect computer work.

Case in point: The Indian emperor Ashoka the Great (304 BC-232 BC): Not a big player on the x86 virtualization scene. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Object storage bods Exablox: RAID is dead, baby. RAID is dead
Bring your own disks to its object appliances
Nimble's latest mutants GORGE themselves on unlucky forerunners
Crossing Sandy Bridges without stopping for breath
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?