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All About the Open Virtualization Alliance

One of the more exciting things to hit the virtualization marketplace over the past few months has been the formation of the Open Virtualization Alliance. The Alliance is being backed by industry heavyweights, such as IBM and HP, and may in the long term prove to be a major thorn in the side of VMware.

The Open Virtualization Alliance is being spearheaded by IBM, HP, Intel, Red Hat, Novell, BMC and Eucalyptus Systems.  The goal of the alliance is to raise the profile of KVM – the Linux Kernel Virtualization Machine – and encourage the adoption of the technology. In addition, they hope to encourage software partners to continue to develop tools that will turn KVM into much more than what it is today – essentially, a commodity hypervisor.

How things play out with the alliance will be interesting, to say the least. According to Red Hat, the alliance should not have any problem attracting some of the smaller software partners – mainly because the companies that are members aren’t going to compete to take away their business.

Why is this necessary? VMware has become the key player in the virtualization ecosystem. They’ve become the Microsoft of the field. They find that’s hot, take it over, and put smaller vendors out of business along the way. At least, that’s how Scott Crenshaw, the VP for Red Hat’s cloud computing business unit, sees things.

What’s particularly interesting about the alliance, however, isn’t the involvement of Red Hat. After all, anything that promotes Linux distribution is likely to be heralded by the largest Linux distributor. However, what is somewhat surprising is that IBM, HP, and Intel are on board. They’ve been long-term VMware partners, and aren’t showing other signs of moving away from that model.

Indeed, those hardware companies haven’t attacked VMware the way that Red Had might. Instead, they focus on the potential for KVM to improve, and to be able to hit a point at which it can truly scale up across a larger data center environment.

The companies have devoted various resources to the project. Most notably, IBM now has 60 developers assigned to the KVM initiative.

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Unitiv, Inc., is a professional provider of enterprise IT solutions. Unitiv delivers its services from its headquarters in Alpharetta, Georgia, USA, and its regional office in Iselin, New Jersey, USA. Unitiv provides a strategic approach to its service delivery, focusing on three core components: People, Products, and Processes. The People to advise and support customers. The Products to design and build solutions. The Processes to govern and manage post-implementation operations.