Why we chose KVM virtualisation

Why we chose KVM virtualisation

Posted by admin in FAQ on September 1, 2010 with No Comments

Answering to some of the queries from our beta testers on why we chose Linux KVM as our virtualisation hypervisor.

Before selecting Linux KVM as our de-facto hypervisor, we have evaluated other popular hypervisors in the market (VMware, Xen – very similar to KVM, while Virtuozzo is only at OS-level containers). We have selected KVM as the best architecture for virtualisation on modern processors with fast hardware virtualisation support (VT-x and NPT on Intel or AMD-V and EPT on AMD).

Historically, virtualisation platform used software to trap and simulate certain instructions, memory management and I/O in the host virtual machines. (VMware was an early leader in this software technology)

With the 1st generation of hardware virtualisation, the VT-x/AMD-V extensions trapped these instructions in hardware, giving a significant speed improvement. However, virtualised memory management and I/O remained bottlenecks. Xen was an early proponent of paravirtualisation, which attacks those bottlenecks by modifying the host operating system at compile time.

With the 2nd generation of hardware virtualisation, the NPT/EPT extensions minimise the memory management bottleneck. As a result, MMU paravirtualisation is a legacy approach, leaving just scheduling and I/O to be virtualised in software by a hypervisor. (I/O virtualisation requires a good set of device drivers for the underlaying hardware, of course: an area in which Linux excels.)

Linux KVM is a hypervisor which is built into the mainline Linux. It uses the full range of hardware virtualisation support, and directly uses the regular Linux scheduler and I/O device drivers. KVM technology has rapidly emerged as the next-generation virtualization technology, following on from the highly successful Xen implementation.

We believe the KVM architecture is superior to both Xen and VMware, since the mainline Linux scheduler and device drivers are both extremely well designed, widely deployed, professionally maintained and thoroughly tested, to a level likely well above what a single company can achieve on either their own proprietary codebase or locally maintained fork of Linux.

Even Red Hat has announced a strong support for KVM hypervisor in it’s virtualisation strategy moving forward (ditching Xen).

So what does that means to you as our client or potential clients?

Besides confidently having a proven and stable platform that runs our cloud service, the KVM itself is an open virtualisation technology that are community driven, thus it definitely able to drive our infrastructure cost down, that in turns, we are able to pass that saving to you by providing our service at a very competitive rates.

We focus on maintaining the server infra for you, while you focus on developing your application and systems on it to serve your customers.


If you have not on our beta trial, email us at support(at)skalicloud.com to get the account.

SKALI Cloud team.

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