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Highlights of Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 - Part 3

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Posted: 17 Aug 2007

Novell Connection Magazine: Tech Talk #7 - Managing NetWare on a Virtualized Machine
Highlights of Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 - Part 3 of 4

by Ken Baker
Novell Connection Magazine - Q3 2007

Here's an excerpt:

Over the past year or so you've no doubt heard many of the benefits of Xen virtualization provided in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10, such as server consolidation, workload isolation and even disaster recovery through dynamic server migration. These benefits are of great interest to Novell customers?and reason for many of them to make the move to Linux. But there is one virtualization benefit that has received only nominal attention: the ability to run NetWare in a virtualized environment and thus preserve NetWare-specific applications or skill sets on which your business can depend. You may want to leverage your NetWare-dependent applications while you gradually migrate to Linux. Or maybe you want to continue running NetWare while taking advantage of the latest and greatest hardware. Either way, you can use the virtualization capabilities inherent in the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 kernel of Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 to achieve your objectives.

Even though NetWare has been enhanced to recognize that it's running as a virtual server, it is still basically the same reliable NetWare you're used to.

> Enhanced for Virtualization

In Novell Open Enterprise Server 2, you have the choice to deploy NetWare 6.5 SP7 on either a physical machine or in a virtual machine using Xen virtualization. The NetWare 6.5 operating system has been enhanced to recognize when it is running in a virtualized environment. This is known as paravirtualization.

With paravirtualization, the NetWare operating system runs inside a virtual machine as a virtualized guest operating system on top of the virtual machine monitor, also known as the Xen hypervisor. The virtual machine monitor is a software layer developed and maintained by the Xen open source community. The virtual machine monitor runs between the server hardware and the SUSE Linux operating system kernel and has the responsibility to allocate resources to the virtualized guest operating systems. It presents them with virtual machines that act like the guest servers? native architectures.

While a fully virtualized operating system has to "trap" information from the executing instruction stream, a paravirtualized operating system doesn't require this and provides performance gains as a result. In addition, with paravirtualization, the virtualized platform doesn't have to emulate the actual hardware platform. This leads to additional efficiencies in circumstances such as accessing page tables that control memory.

Read Part 3 here
Read Part 2 here
Read Part 1 here

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