Microsoft Outlines Virtualization Plans

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2006-05-23 Print this article Print

Updated: At WinHec, the software giant gives a timetable for hypervisor technology, and announces its intention to buy Softricity.

Microsoft announced that it will have a beta version of its upcoming hypervisor virtualization technology ready by the end of 2006, and will release to manufacturing a final version within six months of the release of its Windows Server "Longhorn" operating system RTM.

Microsoft made the announcements May 22 during the first day of its WinHec conference in Seattle.

Along with the hypervisor news, Microsoft also announced that a beta version of its System Center Virtual Machine Manager—formerly codenamed "Carmine"—will be released within the next three months, and that it also intends to buy application virtualization company Softricity.

The announcements come as more businesses turn to server virtualization as a way of reducing hardware and power costs and driving up the utilization of their systems.

Utilization rates for servers are usually in the 10 to 15 percent range. It also comes at a time when Microsoft is hearing criticism for being behind others—particularly VMware and the open-source Xen project—in virtualization technology for x86 systems.

Virtualization enables users to run multiple operating systems on a single physical server via virtual machines. It also can be used to view multiple physical machines as a single virtualized pool of resources.

Microsoft, of Redmond, Wash., last year released Virtual Server 2005, which enables users to create virtual machines in Window's environments.

The hypervisor technology will allow users to more easily use virtualization and see better performance in these virtualized environments, Jim Ni, group product manager for server virtualization marketing at Microsoft, said in an interview with eWEEK before WinHec opened.

"With our architecture, we view our hypervisor as a very thin layer of code that sits between the operating system and hardware," Ni said.

Read the full story on eWEEK.com: Microsoft Outlines Virtualization Plans


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