Friday Apr 08, 2016

Friday Spotlight - Oracle VM 3.4 Dom0 Enhancements

This is another blog in the series to give the Oracle VM community some additional information on the 3.4 release that we announced on March 24. This week, we are going to share a little more information on the Dom0 kernel enhancements that were delivered with this updated version of Oracle VM..

Modern Dom0 kernel

With Oracle VM 3.4 we updated the Dom0 kernel to Oracle Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel (UEK) Release 4, based on the 4.1 mainline kernel. This update brings performance improvements; and rapid driver availability and streamlined partner certifications with Oracle Linux and Oracle VM. The latest set of driver updates offered with this new kernel can be found in the Release Note for UEK Release 4.

Dom0 kernel updates on live systems

Ksplice updates for the Dom0 kernel used on Oracle VM 3.3 (UEK3) and Oracle VM 3.4 (UEK4) are now available. All Oracle VM customers with Premier Support for their x86 Servers will be able to access the Ksplice channel on ULN to take advantage of this Oracle technology to add important kernel updates and security patches without needing to live migrate VMs or reboot your Oracle VM Server.

The process to install the Ksplice Uptrack client and perform the live kernel updates is similar to the process for Oracle Linux since this is used for the Dom0 user space in Oracle VM. Please refer to the KM note on My Oracle Support for all the information you need to use Ksplice with your Oracle VM deployment. The document “Oracle VM: Using Ksplice Uptrack” can be found with Doc ID 2115501.1.

Friday Apr 01, 2016

Friday Spotlight: Oracle VM 3.4 Performance Gains

This is the first in a series of blogs to give the Oracle VM community some additional information on the 3.4 release that we announced last week. To start, we are going to share a little more information on the performance gains and capacity increases that were delivered with this updated version of Oracle VM.

Oracle VM Manager:

A number of infrastructure enhancements have been delivered to increase the performance and responsiveness of the Oracle VM Manager. Test results have shown substantial time improvements for the tasks required to provision and manage your virtualization deployment:

  • 85% improvement in login times to the user interface
  • 62% quicker navigation between tabs
  • 66% faster response to actions like expanding the Server Pools folder

The net result is quicker response times when you perform jobs with the Manager which results in more time to focus on other IT tasks in your data center. Early feedback from an early adopter of Oracle VM 3.4 claims “It’s so zippy!”

Oracle VM Server:

With the introduction of an updated version of the Xen hypervisor and additional enhancements made to the Oracle VM Server code, the 3.4 release offers higher levels of scalability and performance:

  • Capacity increases:

    • CPUs per host Server increased to 384

    • vCPUs per VM increased to 256

    • VM vDisk size increased to 10TB (NFS) and 64TB (OCFS2)

    • VMs per host Server increased to 300

  • Faster live migrations – internal testing shows a 4x improvement in a typical migration time.

Oracle VM Agent for SPARC:

Improvements made to the Oracle VM Agent for SPARC have resulted in a 4x decrease in discovery time for a T5-8 in a customer deployment.

Oracle VM is engineered for the Open Cloud Infrastructure to increase datacenter flexibility, meet your price/performance needs, and make applications easier to deploy, manage, and support.

For more Information - Oracle VM 3.4 documentation is available on the Oracle Technology Network (OTN)

If you have any questions, feel free to post them on this blog entry.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday Mar 24, 2016

Announcing Oracle VM 3.4 - Engineered for Open Cloud Infrastructure

Oracle VM Release 3.4, Oracle’s latest server virtualization product, delivers many important new features and enhancements to enable rapid enterprise application deployment throughout public and private cloud infrastructure. The new release continues expanding support for both Oracle and non-Oracle workloads - providing customers and partners with additional choices and interoperability - including the capability to enable OpenStack support. 

Infrastructure

  • Updated Xen hypervisor - Xen hypervisor updated to deliver greater scalability of up to 256 vCPUs per guest VM.
  • Modern Dom0 kernel - Dom0 kernel updated to Oracle Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel (UEK) Release 4, based on the 4.1 mainline kernel, to bring performance improvements; and rapid driver availability and streamlined partner certifications with Oracle Linux.
  • Enhanced Virtual Appliance support - Improved VM portability across different cloud infrastructure by enhancing OVF based virtual appliance support. Oracle VM Manager now provides the ability to import and export Oracle VM Virtual Appliances as a single .ova (Open Virtualization Format Archive) file or a set of .ovf (Open Virtualization Format) and .img (disk image) files.
  • Storage live migration - Oracle VM uses features built into the OCFS2 file system on x86 platforms to provide live migration capabilities for virtual machines that have virtual disks on local storage.
  • Fiber Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) support Oracle VM provides support for installing Oracle VM Server into FCoE Storage Area Networks (SAN) over selected Host Bus Adapters (HBA) or Converged Network Adapters (CNA).
  • Booting from UEFI Oracle VM Server can now boot from systems that use the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI).
  • Automated installation of VNC and Serial Console software - The Oracle VM Manager installer also manages the installation of the VNC and Serial Console software packages which reduces administrative overhead during a deployment of the environment.

Security and serviceability

  • Dom0 kernel update on live systems - Oracle Ksplice updates the Dom0 Oracle UEK with all of the important security patches without needing to reboot.
  • FIPS 140-2 Validation This release supports enabling FIPS mode for OpenSSL to be compliant with Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) Publication 140-2.
  • Improved character handling for filters - Improvements to Oracle VM Manager allow for better handling of characters used in filter fields to improve matching capabilities and to provide improved protection against attempted SQL injection attacks.

  • Enabling Kdump during Oracle VM Server installation - During installation of Oracle VM Server, you can now choose to enable the Kdump service that captures a memory dump from dom0 and stores it on the filesystem to help you debug and diagnose issues in the event of a system crash.
  • OSWatcher Utility Available on Oracle VM Server the OSWatcher utility is installed on Oracle VM Server by default and is enabled to run at boot. OSWatcher is a collection of shell scripts that collect and archive operating system and network metrics to diagnose performance issues.

Performance

  • Improved Performance - This release of Oracle VM includes several enhancements to overall performance and scalability, including the time it takes to discover a large number of servers.

The following table highlights performance improvements for the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface from Release 3.3.1 to Release 3.4.1:

Action in the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface

First time

Subsequent times

Logging in

85%

80%

Switching from Status Overview to Statistics on the Health tab

23% faster response time

1 second

Expanding the Server Pools folder on the Servers and VMs tab

66% faster response time

0 seconds

Switching from the Servers and VMs tab to the Health tab

62% faster response time

73% faster response time

Usability and manageability

  • Device mappings - Virtual machine configuration details under the Servers and VMs tab in the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface display device mappings that allow you to easily identify which physical resources, such as disks in the repository, correspond to virtual resources, such as virtual disks assigned to virtual machines.
  • Object topology view You can view graphical representations, and generate reports, of virtual machine object nodes and attributes to quickly locate resources and view information about those resources.
  • Generating XML reports - Oracle VM Manager lets you generate XML reports on objects, the object attributes, and direct sub-objects. You can generate reports for virtual machines, Oracle VM Servers, server pools, and storage.
  • User preferences - Oracle VM Manager stores certain user preferences across sessions.
  • Simple names for repository objects - Oracle VM Manager persists simple names for repository objects as metadata. As a result, the simple names are retained when the repository is transferred to a different instance of Oracle VM Manager or easily recovered in cases where Oracle VM Manager is manually restored without a database backup.
  • Configuring management database backups - The Preferences tab in the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface lets you set the interval for backing up the management MySQL database and number of backups to keep.
  • Listing the locations of virtual machine disks - Oracle VM Manager provides detailed information on the location of virtual machine disks to facilitate backup tasks.
  • Monitoring Oracle VM Server through SNMP - This release provides an SNMP shared object module that lets you retrieve details about Oracle VM Server, monitor Oracle VM Server health, and return a list of running virtual machines.
  • Viewing virtual machine configuration files - Oracle VM lets you easily retrieve the configuration files for virtual machines (vm.cfg) from the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface or the command line interface (CLI).
  • Avoiding multiple physical disk allocation - Oracle VM provides detailed information about how physical disks are in use to avoid multiple physical disk allocation.
  • Context sensitive help - Online help for Oracle VM now launches directly from elements in the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface to the relevant help topics. This online help system eliminates the need to navigate through help topics to find information.

Visit the following resources for additional details:

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

Monday Mar 14, 2016

Oracle VM 3.3.4 Released!

We just released a maintenance update for Oracle VM 3.3 to bring new hardware support, improved stability and performance, and to provide bug fixes. 

You can review the Oracle VM Release Note for 3.3.4 to see a summary of the new content and a list of notable bug fixes. Oracle VM 3.3.4 updates are available for download from My Oracle Support.  The patch updates include all the cumulative bug fixes and security fixes that have been integrated since the 3.3.1 release.

Download Instructions

See the download instructions at: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/vm/downloads/index.html

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.

Friday Jan 15, 2016

Friday Spotlight: Using Oracle Clusterware to Protect Oracle VM Manager

Oracle VMOracle VM Manager provides an easy-to-use and centralized management environment for configuring and operating your Oracle VM server, network, and storage infrastructure from a browser-based interface, and it is accessible from just about anywhere. Oracle VM Manager 3 is an Oracle Fusion Middleware application, based on the Oracle Weblogic application server. Oracle VM Manager uses the bundled MySQL Database Enterprise Edition as the management repository beginning with Oracle VM Manager 3.2 release. The Oracle VM Manager 3 runs on 64-bit Oracle Linux.

To make the Oracle VM management components highly available, the built-in management database repository and the Oracle Weblogic Server that come with Oracle VM Manager must be protected in case of a server or application failure. To understand the steps to set up a clustered environment by using Oracle Clusterware to provide fail-over capabilities for Oracle VM Manager 3.3, read the white paper authored by Simon Coter

Friday Nov 06, 2015

Oracle VM 3.2.10 Released

We just released a maintenance update for Oracle VM 3.2 to deliver new hardware support, improve stability, and provide bug fixes. You can review the Oracle VM What's New Wiki for 3.2.10 Manager and 3.2.10 Server for the list of What’s New and Notable Bug Fixes.

Oracle VM 3.2.10 updates are available for download from My Oracle Support. Oracle VM Server packages are also available from the Oracle Unbreakable Linux Network (Oracle VM Server 3.2 Latest Channel). The patch updates include all the cumulative bug fixes that have been integrated since the base 3.2.1 release.  

Oracle VM 3.2.10 Download Information

· Oracle VM Server for x86 3.2.10 server ISO, search patch ID 16410428; and will also available from ULN - https://linux.oracle.com

· Oracle VM Manager 3.2.10 upgrade, search patch ID 16410417

· Oracle VM Agent 3.2.10 for SPARC, search patch ID 16694949

Review the download instructions at: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/vm/downloads/index.html

Additional Information

New customers are encouraged to use the latest Oracle VM 3.3.  Stay tuned for further updates. 

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.

Tuesday Jul 21, 2015

Oracle VM 3.3.3 Released

We just released a maintenance update for Oracle VM 3.3 to bring new hardware support, improved stability, and to provide bug fixes.  You can review the Oracle VM Release Note for 3.3.3 to see a summary of the new content and a list of notable bug fixes.
    Oracle VM 3.3.3 updates are available for download from My Oracle Support.  Oracle VM Server packages are also available from Oracle Unbreakable Linux Network (Oracle VM 3 Latest Channel - since 3.3 release - ovm3x_x86_64_latest). The patch updates include all the cumulative bug fixes that have been integrated since the 3.3.1 release.

Download Instructions

See the download instructions at: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/vm/downloads/index.html

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.

Tuesday Feb 10, 2015

Oracle VM 3.3.2 Released

We just released a maintenance update for Oracle VM 3.3 to bring new hardware support, improved stability, and to 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 3.3.2 server ISO, search patch ID 20492240; and also available from ULN - https://linux.oracle.com
  • Oracle VM Manager 3.3.2 upgrade, search patch ID 20492250
  • Oracle VM Agent 3.3.2 for SPARC, search patch ID 20492222

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.

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.

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 (12.1.0.7), 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"):

Download12.1.0.7.0_oracle.sysman.vt
(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

Monday Sep 08, 2014

Oracle VM Manager OS and Usage Survey

We have a short survey that I'd ask our customers how you use Oracle VM Manager today. Click the link here.  It would just take a few minutes to complete the survey. Thank you for providing your valuable feedback.

Friday Aug 01, 2014

Friday Spotlight: Manage NFS file systems within Oracle VM

Many customers are using NFS storage in addition to iSCSI or Fibre Channel for Oracle VM deployment. There are some concepts you need to understand in order to plan, implement and manage NFS file systems effectively in Oracle VM.  Greg King, Principle Best Practices Consultant from Oracle VM Product Management wrote the blog to discuss an important aspect about discovering and managing NFS file servers in Oracle VM Manager.

For more information, visit the Oracle VM 3.3 Concepts Guide to help you plan Oracle VM deployment. 

Saturday Nov 16, 2013

Bring Oracle VM Environment Up to Date

We incorporate our customer's feedback and bug fixes into the regular updates. It's very beneficial to use the latest update of Oracle VM releases.

Oracle VM 3.2  (Oracle VM Manager and Oracle VM Server for x86) is the current stable release, which has with all the advance management capabilities built-in. 3.2.6 is the latest patch update. You can review the list of bug fixes and enhancements here.

For those customers who are running Oracle VM Server for x86 release 2.2, we recommend you to migrate to the latest Oracle VM 3.2. See the resources below to help with the migration:

If the customers have to stay with Oracle VM 2.2 for an extended period of time, please be sure to update Oracle VM server for x86 to the latest 2.2.3, which is the final update of the 2.2 server release. Oracle VM Server for x86 release 2.2.3 is the server only update,  which has integrated cumulative bug fixes since the 2.2.2 server release.

To review the list of bug fixes, please review the announcement email archive at https://oss.oracle.com/pipermail/oraclevm-errata/. To receive notification on the software update delivered to Oracle Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN, http://linux.oracle.com) for Oracle VM, you can sign up here http://oss.oracle.com/mailman/listinfo/oraclevm-errata.

Oracle VM support subscription is an integrated part of customer's 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 ULN and My Oracle Support

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

Tuesday Apr 23, 2013

Oracle VM 3.2.3 and Oracle VM Server for SPARC updates

We've released the latest Oracle VM 3.2.3 patch updates, which are available for download from My Oracle Support. Oracle VM Server packages are also available from Oracle Unbreakable Linux Network (Oracle VM Sever 3.2.1 Patch Channel or Oracle VM 3 Latest Channel). The patch updates include all the accumulative bug fixes that have been integrated since 3.2.1 release.  See the download instructions: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/server-storage/vm/downloads/index.html

Download Instructions

  • Oracle VM Server for x86 3.2.3 server ISO, search patch ID 16410428; and also available from ULN - https://linux.oracle.com
  • Oracle VM Manager 3.2.3 upgrade, search patch ID 16410417
  • Oracle VM Agent 3.2.3 for SPARC, search patch ID 16694949

We also released updated patches for Oracle VM 3.1.1 - Oracle VM Manager 3.1.1-625 and Oracle VM Server 3.1.1-612. The download instructions are available from the above OTN download page. You can apply the patches to your Oracle VM 3.1.1 environment; but we highly recommend you upgrade Oracle VM 3.1.1 to the latest Oracle VM 3.2 update.

To upgrade Oracle VM environment, please refer to the Oracle VM Installation and Upgrade Guide http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E35328_01/E35330/html/index.html for details.

Meanwhile, we also updated Oracle VM Server for SPARC software.

  • The 3.0 release has been integrated into Oracle Solaris 11.1 SRU, refer to Oracle Solaris 11.1 Support Repository Updates (SRU) Index [ID 1501435.1]  from My Oracle Support. To use with Oracle VM Manager 3.2, please download Oracle VM Agent 3.2 for SPARC, search patch ID 16694949.
  • For Solaris 10, search patch ID 15682381, and apply the latest ldmd patch 150011-03

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.

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