Oracle VM 3.1 is here!
By Ronen Kofman on May 18, 2012
Oracle is announcing the general availability of Oracle VM version 3.1. With this new release we have introduce many improvements, fixed bugs and added more functionality. Our main focus continues to be improved usability, faster and efficient deployment and additional support for backup and availability. In this post we will go over some of the interesting new additions in Oracle VM 3.1
In this release we have made a significant upgrade to the user interface and the result is a new UI which requires less clicks and is laid out in a much more convenient way. Working closely with our customers we have reviewed all the wizards and made them simpler and much more intuitive. The opening screen of Oracle VM now includes the Quick Start Guide to help users get started and allow them to follow step by step to get their environment setup and ready to go.
We continue enhancing the user experience and trying to give the look and feel of a native application. In this release we also allow the user to simply drag and drop VMs from one server to another and servers from one cluster to another. This is made possible by using Oracle Application Development Framework.
Direct access to clustered repositories - clustered repositories using Oracle Cluster File System (OCFS2) are tightly coupled with the servers using them to assure coherence and avoid corruption. In this release we are allowing customers to export those repositories as NFS shares and allow backup tools to "look" into the clustered repository perform a backup/restore operations or any action which can be efficiently done by directly accessing the storage.
Improved agility of clustered repositories - In this release we have added a feature to allow the OCFS2 repositories to freely move between cluster connect and disconnect simply and easily. This eliminates an historic constraint of the clustered file system and allow user to move the cluster as needed and recover it in case of a disaster on a different set of servers without any manual operations.
Support for Multipath Boot from SAN - By supporting multipath boot from SAN we can now store the Oracle VM server image on a SAN and boot directly from that centrally managed image. This gives better reliability and simplified management by using enterprise level storage to host the server image. Using boot from SAN also allow better storage utilization by using the storage array's de-duplication and thin provisioning capabilities.
Automatically deploying multiple VMs from a template - Oracle VM 3.1.1 will now support creating a VM from template in the VM creation wizard. Allowing the user to create multiple VMs at once from a template. This can help speed up deployment of multiple servers and shortens provisioning time.
More discovery options of Oracle VM servers - we no longer require the use of IP ranges to discover servers. In the new release we allow any type of server naming to be used including full and partial host names. We also made it simpler to copy and paste a list of hosts into the discovery box and allow user to paste in their list of servers from their own sources.
Better Resource Utilization
Support for Jumbo Frames - users can now define MTU (maximum transmission unit) size, larger than the standard 1500 bytes per frame, for each bond or port. This will allow users to reduce the networking overhead introduces by working with standard frames. With larger frames the network can provide better throughput and users can achieve better performance especially for network intensive applications and network attached storage.
Hot Add of vCPU - in oracle VM 3.1 we fully support adding and removing virtual CPUs from a VM for OSes which support such capabilities. This can help balance resources and allow 'just in time' resource allocation per the VM needs.
Cutting Edge Technology
Updated Xen hypervisor - Oracle VM now uses the Xen 4.1.2 hypervisor which includes performance improvements to support new CPU features as well as better support for PV drivers.
New Control Domain Kernel (Dom0) - Oracle VM now uses Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel revision 2 (UEK2) as the Domain 0 kernel, leveraging the performance improvements and support more devices and more advanced hardware introduced in this kernel.
This release makes Oracle VM better performing, more efficient and resilient virtualization platform. On top of those improvements Oracle VM PV drivers for Windows are now certified by Microsoft as part f Microsoft's Server Virtualization Vendor Program (SVVP).