Tuesday Dec 02, 2014

Oracle VM 3.2.9 Released

We just released a maintenance update for Oracle VM 3.2 to bring new hardware support, improve stability, and provide bug fixes. You can review the What's New wiki for the list of notable bug fixes.

Download Instructions

  • Oracle VM Server for x86 3.2.9 server ISO, search patch ID 16410428; and also available from ULN - https://linux.oracle.com
  • Oracle VM Manager 3.2.9 upgrade, search patch ID 16410417
  • Oracle VM Agent 3.2.9 for SPARC, search patch ID 16694949

Additional Information

Oracle VM documentation is available on the Oracle Technology Network (OTN):http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/vm/documentation/index.html.

For the latest information, best practices white papers and webinars, please visit http://oracle.com/virtualization.

Monday Oct 06, 2014

Secure Oracle VM Deployments

One of the principles of good security practice is to keep all software versions and patches up-to-date. To keep you and your customers informed about any errata update, please subscribe to oraclevm-errata@oss.oracle.com: you can sign up here to receive notification on software update delivered to ULN for Oracle VM, or you can browse the email archive.

We've released fixes to address the recent security vulnerabilities. Please review the instructions to apply those fixes.

Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance Software - My Oracle Support (MOS) note 1930502.1
Oracle VM 2.2, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3  -  MOS note 1929782.1
  • Xen Security Advisory CVE-2014-7188 / XSA-108
CVE-2014-7188 / XSA-108 Patch Availability Document for Oracle VM - MOS Note 1931331.1
CVE-2014-7188 / XSA-108 Patch Availability Document for Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance - MOS Note 1931380.1
The Oracle VM security architecture, by design, eliminates many security threats. The guidelines for secure deployment of virtualized solutions based on Oracle VM are largely based on network security. As these guidelines are generally applicable, they should always be reviewed for applicability in the context of each implementation and the security requirements and policies of the broader environment in which Oracle VM is deployed. Please review Oracle VM Security Guide to apply to your environment.
  • Oracle VM Security Guide for Release 3.3 HTML
  • Oracle VM Security Guide for Release 3.2 HTML

Friday Oct 03, 2014

Friday Spotlight: Highlights from Oracle OpenWorld 2014

At Oracle OpenWorld 2014, Renée J. James, President of Intel Corporation, shared her keynote on, "The Future of the Data Center in a Software-Defined World". She talked about Intel's Next Generation Firewall (NGFW) for Oracle VM.

During the keynote, Steve Grobman, Intel Fellow and CTO of Intel Security Platforms showed the NGFW demo with Oracle VM Manager:

Steve articulated the key values of the joint solution from Intel and Oracle:

  • Scalable and fast deployment of the virtual firewall instances powered by Oracle VM Templates
  • Fast and secure VM migration orchestrated by Oracle VM Manager
  • And better datacenter protection.

You can watch the keynote replay here.

To learn more about Oracle's virtualization solutions, visit oracle.com/virtualization.

Friday Sep 26, 2014

Oracle VM 3.3 - Integration with Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c

Many customers have transformed how IT delivers information and business services using Oracle VM in a Private Cloud. Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c Cloud Control enables entire stack of enterprise applications that drive crucial business services as well as end-to-end management orchestrations to cloud based services.

With the latest virtualization plug-in update (, Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c works seamlessly with Oracle VM Manager 3.3. You can now download the plug-in from OTN page (drill down "Option 1"):

(38,843,237 bytes, cksum 3401906902)
Plug-in to enable Oracle VM virtualization management capabilities in Oracle Enterprise Manager. 25-Sep-14

Or you may use Self Update option from Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c to bring the plug-in up to date.

For more information, please review

  • Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c Virtualization Plugin for Cloud Control (Doc ID 1371536.1)
  • Oracle Enterprise Manager Cloud Administration Guide: Set Up Cloud for IaaS

Thursday Sep 18, 2014

New update to Oracle VM Server for SPARC

We just released a maintenance update to Oracle VM Server for SPARC. This maintenance release delivers enhanced networking, better scalability and improved flexibility.

For additional resources about Oracle VM Server for SPARC

Friday Jul 04, 2014

Friday Spotlight: Grow Your Business Using Oracle VM Templates

Happy Friday, and for those of us in the US, happy Independence Day!

It's been an exciting week for Oracle Virtualization with the release of Oracle VM 3.3! If you haven't read Honglin's excellent blog post on what's new, be sure to have a look at it.

We also have a new screencast about Oracle VM Templates for you. It's both for Oracle partners and anyone who needs to distribute applications:

Grow Your Business Using Oracle VM Templates

Looking to boost your revenue and sustain growth for your business? View this screencast to see how you can gain an unfair advantage over your competition using Oracle VM Templates for distribution of Oracle Linux, Oracle applications or your own applications. 

Watch the Screencast

See you next week!


Wednesday Jul 02, 2014

Announcing Oracle VM 3.3 - Delivers Enterprise-Scale Performance Enhancements

We are pleased to announce Oracle VM 3.3, Oracle’s latest server virtualization product. It deliver enhanced ease of use for x86 and SPARC architectures, improved management features, and expanded support for both Oracle and non-Oracle workloads, including support for OpenStack—providing customers and partners with additional choices and interoperability. This release continues to enable rapid enterprise application deployment and simplify lifecycle management.

Many customers are using Oracle VM 3 today, Oracle VM help customers virtualize the entire Oracle software stack; in addition, as a general purpose server virtualization solution, Oracle VM runs many non-Oracle workloads as well.

With the latest Oracle VM 3.3 release, the product is getting even better and brings greater customer benefits. New Oracle VM 3.3 highlights:

  • Fully supported Web Services API: Oracle VM Manager now exposes a fully supported Oracle VM Web Services API that offers both SOAP and REST interfaces to program any action supported within Oracle VM, enabling more automation and interoperability. See the Oracle VM Web Services API Developer's Guide for more information. In addition, the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface and the Oracle VM Manager Command Line Interface have been rewritten to use the new WS-API to provide further consolidation and consistency.  

  • New statistics and events model: The statistics and events model has been entirely rewritten to offer significant performance gains. A queued job task is in place to monitor the number of generated statistics and to adjust the threshold automatically during periods where the number of statistics exceeds the threshold.

  • Huge Page support: Support for Huge Pages (or Super Pages) has been added to allow guests, hosted on an x86-based server pool, to take advantage of this functionality to improve performance and reduce the I/O that results from page lookups in virtualized environments.

  • Improvements to guest VM messaging: A change to the Oracle VM Guest Additions messaging facility to support multiple key-value pairs in a single message reduces the number of jobs generated within Oracle VM Manager, resulting in significant performance gains.

  • Tighter security control: Reduces the number of required open ports to minimize potential access points and security vulnerabilities. To protect and ensure authorized access to Oracle VM Server, a certificate-based authentication model has been implemented for Oracle VM Agent and Oracle VM Manager.

  • Virtual machine configuration file view: It is now possible to view the virtual machine configuration file for any virtual machine directly within the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface and Oracle VM Manager Command Line Interface, to provide more transparency for the configuration that is actually applied to a virtual machine when it is started by the hypervisor.
  • New virtual machine console: The virtual machine console has been redesigned to use JavaScript and HTML5 features. There is no longer any requirement to install or run software locally on the client computer. This change reduces complexity and provides a more reliable console tool.

  • Management database consolidation: Oracle VM Manager comes bundled MySQL Database Enterprise Edition, providing automated database backup and integrated tools for database object consistency checking to improve supportability and management. It removes the need for an external database as the backend management repository. 
  • Inbound migration Lock: A new feature allows you to protect an Oracle VM Server from attempts to move or migrate other virtual machines to that server. This allows you to run selected virtual machines on a specified Oracle VM Server, and to be certain that no other virtual machines are started on the server, consuming resources that may be mission critical for some applications.
  • Improved VLAN support: Simplified VLAN support definition enables users to specify VLAN interfaces as needed and to define which ports are used for which VLAN tags, bringing more flexibility to network design.
  • Improved SPARC virtualization management and availability: Additional storage types such as Fibre Channel, iSCSI, ZFS volume, and local disk, in addition to NFS, can now be directly assigned to virtual machines running in a SPARC server pool managed by Oracle VM Manager, offering customers more choices when choosing storage with Oracle VM Server for SPARC. Furthermore, virtual machine high availability and support for configuration of redundant I/O service domains improve system availability for business-critical operations.
  • Oracle VM Server installation partitioning: The Oracle VM Server Installer now handles all disk partitioning itself, to optimize installation. Part of this process make sure that only the maximum required disk space for the Oracle VM Server software is used. Any remaining disk space is automatically partitioned to be used as a discoverable local disk that can be used to host a storage repository, or attached to a virtual machine hosted on the server. This improvement to disk space usage ensures the best possible use of machine resources. This change is only supported for locally hosted boot disks and does not apply to SAN disks.
  • New guides and improved interface coverage: The documentation has been restructured to provide more comprehensive coverage.
  • Infrastructure changes in Oracle VM Manager: Much of the technology used to enable Oracle VM Manager has been updated to take advantage of new features, improved performance and security fixes. Major changes to these components include: Oracle WebLogic Server and ADF upgraded to 12c; Java upgraded to version 7; MySQL Database Enterprise Edition upgraded to version 5.6.
  • Infrastructure changes in Oracle VM Server: Major changes to the underlying technology used for Oracle VM Server on x86 hardware have been implemented, including: Xen hypervisor upgraded to version 4.3; Dom0 user space upgraded to Oracle Linux 6; and Dom0 kernel upgraded to Oracle Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Release 3 (UEK3). The optimization of the hypervisor and special-built Oracle Linux with Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel has enabled Oracle VM Server the most scalable x86 server virtualization solution. Oracle VM 3.3 supports up to 240 physical CPU threads and 6 TB memory, and the guest VM supports up to 128 virtual CPUs and 2,000,000 MB memory. Such scalability limits have been tested on Oracle’s Sun Server X4-8 System.

Visit the following resources for additional details:

To learn more about Oracle's virtualization solutions, visit oracle.com/virtualization.

Thursday May 08, 2014

Oracle VM's Growing Ecosystem

In the x86 server virtualization market, Oracle VM continues growing its ecosystem. 

Oracle VM supports a broad range of the guest operating systems such as Oracle Solaris, Oracle Linux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, CentOS, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, and Microsoft Windows.

For Windows guests, we have paravirtual (PV) drivers that provide improved network and disk throughput to run fully virtualized Windows guests on Oracle VM. Oracle VM Windows PV Drivers are signed by Microsoft. Oracle is a participant of  Microsoft Windows Server Virtualization Validation Program (SVVP). Windows PV Drivers along with Oracle VM Server for x86 have passed the SVVP requirements, read the details here. The Microsoft SVVP program enables the vendor such as Oracle to validate Oracle VM Server for x86 along with Windows PV Drivers so that Microsoft customers running copies of Windows Server they have acquired and licensed from Microsoft directly can receive technical support for Windows Server in virtualized environments, learn the details of the supported Microsoft server software (e.g. SQL Server, Exchange Server, etc.) here.

Not just Oracle software, non-Oracle applications are certified to run on Oracle VM. For example, SAP products can be deployed in Oracle VM virtualized environments. You can read more at the SAP on Oracle page on the SAP Community Network. If you are an SAP customer, you can search for SAP Note 1808268 for more details. Oracle VM helps customers deploy enterprise software in a rapid, repeatable and error-free manner with many Oracle VM Templates or Virtual Appliances for Oracle applications, middleware and databases as well as 3rd party ISV applications. You can watch the recent webcast below.

Oracle VM has been integrated into many Oracle Engineered Systems with enhanced virtualization capability. Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance is the latest example, which radically simplifies the way customers install, deploy, and manage converged infrastructures for any Linux, Oracle Solaris, or Microsoft Windows application.

Oracle VM is widely deployed on the x86 hardware across many vendors. For the complete list of certified hardware platform, visit Oracle Linux and Oracle VM certified hardware.

Oracle Validated Configurations program offers pre-tested, validated architectures—including software, hardware, storage, and network components—along with documented deployment guides, available on many different hardware platforms.

Furthermore, Oracle has been working with other vendors to offer Oracle VM as part of their validated configurations such as FlexPod. For example, Oracle VM with Oracle RAC as workload was validated on FlexPod published here as a Cisco Validated Configuration document.

To learn more, visit:

Saturday Jul 07, 2012

Best Practices to Accelerate Oracle VM Server Deployments

IOUG (Independent Oracle User Group) Virtualization SIG is hosting the webcast on the best practices of Oracle VM server virtualization.

The upcoming event is scheduled on July 11 with the focus on Oracle VM Server on SPARC. Watch the recording here. Areas addressed will include recommended practices for installation, maintenance, performance, and reliability.  Topics will include sizing, resource allocation, multiple I/O domain configurations for availability, secure live migration, selection of I/O backends, and I/O virtualization. 

To learn the best practices on Oracle VM Server for x86,  watch the session replay here. For more white paper about best practices, visit Oracle VM OTN page here.

Wednesday Jun 27, 2012

Get the latest Oracle VM updates

We have released the latest Oracle VM updates for both x86 and SPARC. 

For Oracle VM Server for SPARC:

  • Oracle Solaris 11 SRU8.5 includes Oracle VM server for SPARC 2.2 so if you're already running a Solaris 11 as the control domain. All you need do is a 'pkg update' to get the latest 2.2 bits. Learn more how to upgrade to the latest Oracle VM Server for SPARC 2.2 release on Solaris 11 here and consult the documentation for further details.

For Oracle VM Server for x86

For more information about Oracle's virtualization, visit oracle.com/virtualization.

Friday Jun 08, 2012

Keep Oracle VM 3 Up to Date

Oracle VMMore and more customers turn to Oracle VM 3 to virtualize their enterprise applications. Oracle VM support subscription is an integrated part of their successes. Customers enjoy the benefit of the industry-leading global support 24x7 for their server virtualization implementation, and receive access to patches, fixes, and updates via Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN). For customers running Oracle systems, Oracle VM support is included in Oracle Premium Support for Systems at no extra cost, and customers receive comprehensive systems coverage that includes single point accountability for Oracle server and storage hardware; integrated software (for example, firmware); and operating system software (Oracle Solaris, Oracle Linux, and Oracle VM).

To run a successful virtualization infrastructure, it's important to keep Oracle VM 3 environment up to date by leveraging Oracle VM support resources. 

  • Oracle VM Server Updates: You can easily upgrade Oracle VM Server using a Yum repository. You can download the latest server patch updates from ULN. To receive notification on the software update delivered to Oracle ULN for Oracle VM, you can sign up here. For information on setting up an Oracle VM Server Yum repository and using Oracle VM Manager to perform the upgrade of Oracle VM Servers, see Updating and Upgrading Oracle VM Servers in the Oracle VM User's Guide
  • Oracle VM Manager Updates: Get the download instructions at OTN, and apply latest Oracle VM Manager patch. Be sure to review the patch README before you apply the patches.
  • Support customers have access to extremely valuable knowledge notes from My Oracle Support. They are the first to receive useful tips to help address issues in Oracle VM deployments. For example,
    • Upgrade to Oracle VM 3.1.1 using Yum Repository may cause network configuration scripts to be renamed causing network failure after reboot (Doc ID 1464126.1)
    • Oracle VM server reboots after network becomes unresponsive due to deep C-State power management setting (Doc ID 1440197.1)
For more information about Oracle's virtualization, visit oracle.com/virtualization.

Sunday May 27, 2012

Full Stack Story with Oracle VM

Full Stack Story with Oracle VMWhen we talk about the server virtualization solution from Oracle, Oracle VM has the server virtualization and management components in one solution. One of the reasons that differentiate Oracle from others is the full stack story.

At the virtualization layer, we have Oracle VM Manager included with Oracle VM. Oracle Enterprise Manager is the enterprise management product providing an integrated management environment for the full software stack together with physical or virtual environment. Specifically, we have Oracle VM Server for x86 and Oracle VM Server for SPARC, both offer high performance server virtualization solution, with advanced capability to help customers accelerate application deployment. With Oracle Premier Support for Systems, the enterprise quality support includes server virtualization (Oracle VM) and the operating systems (Oracle Linux and Oracle Solaris).

A combination of hardware, virtualization, middleware, database and packaged applications, when combined with integrated management across all layers, comprises the best building blocks for streamlined operations and maximum agility in the data center. It also creates the underpinnings for the future in cloud-based deployments. Only Oracle’s integrated stack represents a virtualization offering that is application-driven and can enable deployment of complete solutions as opposed to just servers and operating systems.

Moreover, it's very affordable to get started. The base installation of Oracle Enterprise Manager includes several features free of charge with the purchase of any Oracle software license or Support contract. Read Base Enterprise Manager Functionality for the list of features that are included with the base functionality of Oracle Enterprise Manager, including Server, Storage, and Virtualization Management Features.

To learn more, read the blog "The case for Oracle VM". 

Thursday May 24, 2012

Announcing Oracle VM Server for SPARC 2.2 Release

We are excited to announce Oracle VM Server for SPARC 2.2, the latest release of Oracle’s enterprise-class server virtualization solution. The new release delivers significant enhancements that improve workload agility and performance, maximize the availability of business-critical applications, and increase flexibility in provisioning and deployment. Oracle VM Server for SPARC takes advantage of the massive thread scale offered by SPARC T-Series servers and the Oracle Solaris operating system.

See the key features and benefits delivered in Oracle VM Server for SPARC 2.2:

  • Secure live migration is now available across different generations of SPARC T-Series servers for flexibility of workload deployment and migration. Customers continue to benefit from their existing investment as they add SPARC T4 servers into the environment for increased capacity with minimal downtime or disruption to their operation. Secure live migrations are as simple as point and click using Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center’s console. Read more about Cross-CPU Secure Live Migration here and watch a video demo.
  • Single-Root I/O Virtualization (SR-IOV) delivers superior I/O throughput to guest domains that have SR-IOV on Oracle's SPARC T4 and SPARC T3 platforms. SR-IOV enables the efficient sharing of PCIe network devices among I/O domains so application workloads can achieve native I/O performance. Read more about SR-IOV feature and SR-IOV Virtual Function (VF).

  • Integrated optimization with SPARC T-Series servers, especially for SPARC T4 and SPARC SuperCluster T4-4, provides administrators with fine-grained control of server resources and the ability to tailor CPU performance across business-critical enterprise workloads for better throughput. Read more about whole core allocation enhancements here.

Please review the Oracle VM Server for SPARC 2.2 Documentation for specific details of required and minimum software and supported platforms. Visit the download page for instructions to download the required software.

Oracle Premier Support for Systems provides fully-integrated support for your server hardware, firmware, OS, and virtualization software. Visit oracle.com/support for information about Oracle's support offerings for Sun systems.

For additional resources about Oracle VM Server for SPARC

For more information about Oracle's virtualization, visit oracle.com/virtualization.

Wednesday Jan 26, 2011

Secure Deployment of Oracle VM Server for SPARC

Oracle VM Server for SPARC is the server virtualization solution for SPARC T-Series server. A typical Oracle VM Server for SPARC installation based on best practices is already well secured against unauthorized use. In many cases this level of security turns out to be sufficient. Nevertheless, there is an attack surface that remains. There are risks, how unlikely they might be. Thus many customers want to learn more to secure their virtualization environment.

We just published a technical white paper: Secure Deployment of Oracle VM Server for SPARC written by Stefan Hinker, an Oracle solution architect.

This paper helps you understand the general security concerns in virtualized environments as well as the specific additional threats that arise out of them. It discusses these threats, their relation to Oracle VM Server for SPARC and how to mitigate the risk with a set of appropriate counter measures. Based on these, some general recommendations for secure deployments - both for Oracle VM Server for SPARC and for virtualized systems in general - are given, using a generalized model of security classes as an example.

For more information about Oracle VM Server for SPARC:
Visit oracle.com/virtualization to learn more about Oracle's virtualization solutions.

Thursday Jan 13, 2011

Webcast: Best Practices for Speeding Virtual Infrastructure Deployment with Oracle VM

We announced Oracle VM Blade Cluster Reference Configuration last month, see the blog. The new Oracle VM blade cluster reference configuration can help reduce the time to deploy virtual infrastructure by up to 98 percent when compared to multi-vendor configurations. Customers and partners have shown lots of interests. Join Oracle's experts to learn the best practices for speeding virtual infrastructure deployment with Oracle VM, register the webcast (1/25/2011) here.

Virtualization has already been widely accepted as a means to increase IT flexibility and help IT services align better with changing business needs. The flexibility of a virtualized IT infrastructure enables new applications to be rapidly deployed, capacity to be easily scaled, and IT resources to be quickly redirected. The net result is that IT can bring greater value to the business, making virtualization an obvious win from a business perspective.

However, building a virtualized infrastructure typically requires assembling and integrating multiple components (e.g. servers, storage, network, virtualization, and operating systems). This infrastructure must be deployed and tested before applications can even be installed. It can take weeks or months to plan, architect, configure, troubleshoot, and deploy a virtualized infrastructure. The process is not only time-consuming, but also error-prone, making it hard to achieve a timely and profitable return on investment. 

Oracle is the only vendor that can offer a fully integrated virtualization infrastructure with all of the necessary hardware and software components. The Oracle VM blade cluster reference configuration is a single-vendor solution that addresses every layer of the virtualization stack with Oracle hardware and software components, see the figure below. It enables quick and easy deployment of the virtualized infrastructure using components that have been tested together and are all supported together by Oracle.

Oracle VM Blade Cluster Reference Configuration

To learn more about Oracle's virtualization offerings, visit http://oracle.com/virtualization.


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