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Xen 3.4 Launch Announcement

Xen.org is pleased to announce the latest release of the Xen hypervisor, the open source industry standard for virtualization. Xen.org is a global community of independent and industry developers, university researchers, users, and virtualization gurus who regularly contribute to the shared design, development, support, and improvement of the Xen hypervisor platform.

The new release, Xen 3.4, furthers the vision of creating a powerful, efficient, and ubiquitous virtualization hypervisor. As part of the Xen community’s commitment to continuous improvement, the new hypervisor offers significant enhancements in the following areas:

•    Xen Client Initiative (XCI) Enhancements –Xen.org continues develop industry virtualization standards for desktop and client devices. Xen 3.4 contains the initial XCI code release providing a base client hypervisor for the community to extend and improve. This new version of the Xen hypervisor expands the hardware options for the leading open source virtualization platform.

•    Reliability – Availability – Serviceability (RAS) – In addition, Xen now delivers a collection of features designed to avoid and detect system failures, provide maximum uptime by isolating system faults, and provide system failure notices to administrators to properly service the hardware/software. The combination of these services provide for a robust Xen hypervisor with fault-tolerant and back-up capabilities built-in.

•    Power Management – Xen 3.4 improves the power saving features with a host of new algorithms to better manage the processor including schedulers and timers optimized for peak power savings.

Xen 3.4 is currently available via free download to developers by visiting the Xen.org website at: http://www.xen.org/download

Momentum in the Xen Community

The Xen community remains strong and active.  On average, Xen.org receives more than 750 new code submissions to the source tree each month from developers across the world working on an array of solutions within the hypervisor. Industry leading companies such as Intel, AMD, HP, IBM, Oracle, Red Hat, Sun, Fujitsu, and Novell are part of the vibrant Xen.org community and contribute to the development of the hypervisor code. The Yankee Group’s Third Annual Virtualization Survey reports a significant increase of commercial Xen-based solutions which represent 17 percent of total market share. This includes a Citrix XenServer share of 11 percent, plus an additional six percent from other open source suppliers.

On an ongoing basis, university research and other high profile Xen projects   are regularly incorporated or run on the hypervisor. For example, Project Snowflock from the University of Toronto leverages the Xen hypervisor to instantaneously launch thousands of virtual machines for fast, efficient, scalable parallel processing and Project HXen extends the Type1 virtual machine monitor (VMM) functionality in Xen to a Type 2 VMM for a simplified method of deploying Xen to desktops, laptops, USB sticks and other devices where the base OS is left in place. For high availability, Project Kemari  and Project Remus provide transparent, comprehensive, high availability to ordinary virtual machines running on the Xen virtual machine monitor by maintaining a completely up-to-date copy of a running VM on a backup server, which automatically activates if the primary server fails. These are examples of the various contributions across academia and within the development community to Xen.org.

To date, thousands of companies and universities have chosen the power of open source Xen, making the Xen hypervisor their choice to provide virtualization in their IT environment. Last month, more than 100 attendees from the open source community participated in the Xen Summit sponsored by Oracle; similar events are planned in Europe and Asia this year to support the growing global community.

In addition, the Xen.org community is committed to providing more resources to its members:

•    Xen.org Solutions Search is a new online tool enabling customers to quickly find consultants, hosting providers, developers, and solutions built on the Xen hypervisor platform. This search system profiles the growing ecosystem for the Xen hypervisor.

•    Xen.org is committing resources to expand the global footprint for support and promotion of the open source Xen hypervisor. Materials are being translated into Spanish, German, Portuguese, Chinese, and Japanese with the community Wiki now available in English, Spanish, French, Russian, German, Chinese, Korean Japanese, and Italian. Support groups for customers are also available in English, Portuguese, Japanese, and Italian.

•    Finally, Xen.org is excited to offer an event for virtualization customers and prospects in Europe called Xen Directions, being held in conjunction with LinuxTAG on June 27, 2009 in Berlin, Germany.  A variety of hands-on Xen demonstrations will be offered to the European technical audience for the first time. In 2010, Xen.org will be hosting the first event in South America as part of the FISL event in Brazil.


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