In a move designed to accelerate uptake of its open source virtualization platform, Citrix announced today worldwide availability of its free enterprise ready open source XenServer.
The Ft Lauderdale company announced it February it would make XenServer software with hypervisor as well as features and functionality and unlimited deployment capabilities included at no cost to customers.
Citrix is fighting off industry giants VMware and Microsoft on the proprietary side as well as Red Hat, which is backing a rival open source hypervisor called KVM. Although Xen is the more established of the two open source hypervisors, KVM's incorporation into the Linux kernel makes it a serious threat to Xen's long term viability, some observers maintain.
The free version of XenServer is available for download in 50 countries. Citrix had a preview available for download after the announcement hit the wires last month.
The XenServer has many significant features including full live motion and multi-node management but Citrix isn't giving away the whole farm for free.
A forthcoming product dubbed Citrix Essentials for XenServer offers at cost a range of other desirable features such as lab automation, dynamic provisioning, workflow orchestration, high availability and integration with leading storage systems, Citrix said.
Red Hat said it will continue to support the Xen hypervisor in its enterprise 5 Linux release for several years but has embraced KVM for the long term. Last year Red Hat purchased KVM pioneer Qumranet to lead the way.
In my book, there's room for two open source hypervisors. Xen continues to have significant support from open source backers and will continue to have support as long as Citrix behaves like an open source vendor.