AMD, Red Hat demo cross-platform live migration

The companies have posted a video online showing how they can move virtual machines between Intel and AMD platforms without requiring systems to be shut down

AMD and Red Hat have demonstrated the live migration of virtual machines between AMD and Intel servers.

The companies have shown off the capability in a video posted on YouTube on Wednesday.

The term 'live migration' refers to moving virtual machines between physical servers without affecting other tasks running on the machines at the time. The companies claim this is the first time this has been demonstrated between processors from the two manufacturers.

John Fruehe, director of business development for AMD's server and workstation group told ZDNet UK on Friday that the chipmaker was looking to take market share from Intel. "If you really look at the market share and where the world is from a product perspective, the biggest reason for showing a virtual machine moving from an Intel system to an AMD system is that's where the money is," he said.

In the video, AMD's vice president of software development, Earl Stahl, said the functionality would give enterprises "flexibility to buy the hardware that meets [their] business requirements [and to] equip [their] overall datacentre in the most cost-effective way".

"With this capability of live migrating across a heterogeneous [environment], enterprises can live migrate their virtual servers from one server pool to another server pool, thereby significantly driving up the datacentre efficiency in their environment," claimed Navin Thadani, Red Hat's senior director of virtualisation, in the video.

Brian Stevens, Red Hat's chief technology officer, also appeared in the video. "Red Hat and AMD will continue our work together," he said. "This just marks the latest innovation and the latest part of our collaboration with direct customer benefits."

"If you look at where virtualisation is happening, for the most part we're the preferred incumbent now because of our architecture, but there's still a lot happening on Intel systems," Fruehe told ZDNet UK, while pointing out that the video showed only a technology demonstration, rather than a feature that was being offered for sale now.

Asked whether such live migration functionality might benefit Intel rather than AMD, Fruehe insisted that AMD could "deliver better virtualisation performance and do it at lower power and lower system utilisation" than its rival. "If we believed [Intel] had a better platform for virtualisation, there would be the danger that it could benefit them, but the benefit flows in our direction," he said.


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