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Chip Design Authors: Jnan Dash, Jason Bloomberg, Trevor Bradley, David Strom

Related Topics: Virtualization Magazine

Virtualization: Article

Mellanox and Novell Drive High Bandwidth Virtualization Into Data Centers

InfiniBand and Xen Hypervisor Primed For SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 Platform

Mellanox Technologies, announced its collaboration with Novell to build an integrated solution that delivers Xen 3.0.2 virtualization in conjunction with Mellanox’s 20Gb/s InfiniBand fabric solutions on top of Novell’s SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 platform.

“Data center designers that cannot compromise on latency delays in their applications, and want to consolidate I/O, find InfiniBand’s value proposition to be very compelling,” said Holger Dyroff, vice president of product management for SUSE Linux at Novell. “We are happy to be working with Mellanox at several mutual customers to deliver a solution that offers better control over the network fabric and a strong foundation to deploy Xen virtualization for large, multi-node clusters. By using open source InfiniBand software from OpenFabrics.org to add support for InfiniBand based I/O virtualization, we will enable organizations to improve server utilization and create a flexible and responsive data center.”

The Xen hypervisor offers the ability to ensure service levels by guaranteeing guests committed fractions of the total CPU processing power. I/O channel capabilities supported in Mellanox InfiniBand adapters extend the same service level guarantees to the I/O pipe. The Xen hypervisor can also migrate live workloads from one physical server to another. By using high-performance RDMA technologies, such workloads can be migrated much faster, reducing CPU utilization and service downtimes significantly.

“Mellanox 20Gb/s InfiniBand adapters’ virtual I/O channel features are synergistic with the paravirtualization capabilities offered by Xen, enabling guest OSes to reach near-native I/O performance,” said Thad Omura, vice president of product marketing at Mellanox Technologies. “Novell’s initiatives to optimize Xen hypervisor technologies over InfiniBand, and then bring those technologies to market, will deliver a robust platform for applications in areas such as financial data centers that demand maximum price-performance benefits.”

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