Huh? Microsoft supports Linux but snubs Xen

Huh? Microsoft supports Linux but snubs Xen

Summary: Microsoft announced that they would be giving away their virtualization software, and that it would support Linux, so why not support the emerging standard of open source virtualization: Xen.

TOPICS: Virtualization

I had to double-check my calendar and my remote (not that remote) thermostat in Hades to believe this one but it looks like it's really true, Microsoft will be supporting Linux running in their Virtualization software.

Illuminata's Gordon Haff was quoted in the article as saying, "What choice did (Microsoft) have?". I'll tell you what choice: How about joining just about every other operating system vendor on the XenSource project? If, as they claim, MS's virtualization will be free, then what do they care that it's open source too?

Am I the only person who would love a setup like this: One multi-core x86 box, running Linux, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Solaris 10, and MacOS X at the same time with stability and full speed available for performance analysis and benchmarking?

Topic: Virtualization

Ed Burnette

About Ed Burnette

Ed Burnette is a software industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience as a programmer, author, and speaker. He has written numerous technical articles and books, most recently "Hello, Android: Introducing Google's Mobile Development Platform" from the Pragmatic Programmers.

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  • Bob Dylan was right

    [i]"The times they ARE a changin'"[/i]
    D T Schmitz
    • The times they ARE a changin
  • we all know

    that ms suffers like most big companies from the [b]not invented overhere syndrom[/b]
    Whe share resources when you can do it yourselves. Makes you wonder what shareholders would be thinking if they would grasp what this actually means (send 10 techies to help out versus 100 to build it yourselves).
  • Key difference

    With MS virtualization hosting Linux, the customer still has to get a license from Microsoft -- there's no migration path away (and rather less point, since the security and reliability of the Linux guest can never exceed its host's.)

    With Xen, the only time a Microsoft image appears is when the system is running a Microsoft guest -- it makes for a great, easy-to-follow migration path away from MS.

    Besides, it would be hard, obvious, and bad PR to detect Linux clients so as to cripple them. On the other hand, Xen can be left out simply by MS not "bothering" to port to the Xen environment.
    Yagotta B. Kidding
  • You can do it anyway, soon

    >> One multi-core x86 box, running Linux, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Solaris 10, and MacOS X at the same time ...

    I don't know lots about virtualization yet, but from Xen's v3.0 manual it appears that Intel's VT and AMD's SVM will allow at least Linux, Windows XP, and Windows Vista to run on Xen unmodified (so long as you have the licenses to do so, of course). I don't know how well Solaris 10 runs on Intel hardware (you tell me!) and MacOS X would probably require you to be running Xen on one of the new Intel Mac hardware platforms, but they might work.
    • I'd buy a Mac for that

      Actually I already have one but you know what I mean. That could be a value-add for the Intel Mac hardware. Though, remember that the first time MacOSX was run on non-Apple hardware it was through virtualization.
      Ed Burnette
  • RE: Huh? Microsoft supports Linux but snubs Xen

    Who didn't know....... the only thing
    Microsoft supports
    is....ta-da-da-daaaaaaa... Microsoft.

    Microsoft supports Microsoft.
    Partners support Microsoft.
    Developers support Microsoft.
    Vendors support Microsoft.
    Manufacturers support Microsoft.
    Users support Microsoft.
    Everybody supports Microsoft.
    If they don't, Microsoft don't let
    them play. End of story.
    Ole Man