IBM will be bringing KVM Linux virtualization to Power in 2014

KVM, the long a popular x86 Linux virtualization technology, will appear in IBM's Power architecture in 2014.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

Linux has many hypervisors, such as Xen, and it's supported by more, such as Azure, but it also has its own built-in hypervisor: Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM). Unfortunately, KVM only works on Intel and AMD processors. Earlier this year, IBM announced that it would be adding KVM support to its Power architecture, and now we know that it will be appearing sometime in 2014.

KVM will be running on Power processors in 2014.

In an exclusive interview, Jim Wasko, the IBM Linux Technology Center Director, said, that the porting of "KVM to Power is going fairly well. It's already working in labs and the Technology Center has used it internally in development, and we're pushing patches upstream."

Wasko added that KVM on Power is "no longer an experiment. The code is at engineering level quality now, so 2014 is a reasonable target for it to appear in Linux distributions."

Sources close to Red Hat and SUSE, the leading Linux vendors for IBM's Power architecture servers, confirmed that they'll be deploying KVM for Power in their enterprise server distributions. 

The end result, Wasko said, is that "KVM will become the industry standard hypervisor."

He could be on to something. The newly reformed Open Virtualization Alliance has united more than 250 companies behind KVM. These include a who's who of server and hardware companies including AMD, Dell, HP, and Intel. In short, Citrix XenServer, Microsoft Azure, and VMware ESX will all be facing a more competitive KVM, especially on higher-end servers, in the coming years.

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