Sun Commits $2 Billion to Virtualization

November 16th, 2007 - 9:11 pm ICT by admin  

At the Oracle OpenWorld conference in San Francisco this week, Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz announced Sun’s commitment of nearly $2 billion to the launch of a new open-source virtualization platform.

“The conceptual view that we have going forward is that it’s hard to imagine a data center — or the majority of any data center — that won’t be operating in a virtualized mode over the next three or five to seven years,” in effect becoming “the default for building out any interesting I.T. services,” Schwartz said.

What Sun intends to do, Schwartz explained, is to move virtualization beyond simple server consolidation to “encompass all data center assets, from the network and storage, to applications and hardware provisioning, while eliminating the risk of proprietary dependency.”

First Down the Chute

During the OpenWorld conference, Sun unveiled its first products for enabling virtualized data centers to run on x86/64 and Sparc systems from hardware vendors such as Dell, Fujitsu, HP, and IBM. The company’s xVM hypervisor is a lightweight kernel that inherits virtualization technologies from Solaris while supporting Linux, Windows, and Solaris as guests, Schwartz explained.

Along with creating xVM, Sun has developed a scalable data center automation tool called xVM Ops Center. “Managing the complexity that virtualization is going to create as a build-out in scale of forward-looking data centers is every bit as important” as the hypervisor itself, Schwartz noted.

To help spur the technology’s adoption, Sun is launching a new community for developers building data center virtualization and management technologies. Sun intends to provide support agreements for a fee so that customers making deployments will have someone to call — “the standard business model that we use with all of our technologies,” Schwartz said. “There are some enterprises in the world for which a free, unsupported product is not an option…

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