Why Logical Domains

Logical Domains (LDoms) is Sun's new server virtualization and partitioning technology for CoolThreads servers. LDoms is free and the most open virtualization technology available. It runs on the free and open source Solaris which has the largest installed-base than any other commercial UNIX or Linux distribution on the planet. Unlike competitive systems with their proprietary virtualization technologies, LDoms can save you up to $3,600 per server - of course, the more servers that are virtualized, the higher the savings and the greater the benefits.

LDoms technology is supported on Sun servers which utilize UltraSPARC T1 (Niagara) and future chip multithreading (CMT) processors developed by Sun. Currently the following servers are supported by LDoms:

  • Sun Fire and SPARC Enterprise T1000 Servers
  • Sun Fire and SPARC Enterprise T2000 Servers
  • Netra T2000 Server
  • Netra CP3060 Blade

The LDoms technology provides system administrators the ability to create and manage logical domains; virtualize resources; create communications channels; and define network, storage, and other I/O devices as services able to be shared from one domain to another. The following are the key features for the 1.0 release:

  1. Up to 32 logical domains per server
  2. Guest domains can be configured, started and stopped independently
  3. Ability to dynamically add and remove virtual CPUs while OS is running
  4. Predictive self healing capability for each logical domain
  5. Control domain hardening

By deeply integrating Logical Domains with both the industry-leading CMT capability of the UltraSPARC T1 processor and Solaris 10 operating system, LDoms technology helps increase flexibility, isolate workload processing, and improve the potential for maximum server utilization.

Many customers have already used Solaris Containers on CoolThreads servers for application isolation. LDoms technology provides another important feature with OS isolation, giving customers the flexibility to deploy multiple operating systems simultaneously on a single platform. Therefore, organizations can couple Solaris Containers and LDoms software with the breakthrough space and energy savings afforded by CoolThreads servers to deliver a more agile, responsive, and low-cost environment. To summarize, LDoms technology, working with Solaris Containers on CoolThreads servers, breaks though typical space and energy data center constraints to serve millions of new customers.

Comments:

I like your terms, "application isolation" and "OS isolation". Those are simple terms that accurately describe what is being done with these two virtualization techniques. I would add Solaris Zones also provide security isolation, which is why Zones and similar technologies such as SWSoft Virtuozzo are useful in the web hosting industry. And I would guess hardware domains are basically "hardware isolation", as well as "service isolation" or "service boundary". Maybe "userspace isolation" and "kernel isolation" is more accurate for Zones and LDoms, but too geeky.

Posted by Mark on May 05, 2007 at 12:14 PM PDT #

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