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VMware Teams Up With Linux Foundation

VMware joined the Linux Foundation on Wednesday. The alliance will help VMware further its collaboration with the Linux community, especially with developers of the Linux open source operating system kernel used to integrate VMware's virtualization software.

VMware's product provides a solution that that can abstract a computer's underlying hardware, allowing software to run across various hardware configurations. The solution uses technology called a hypervisor to do so. It helps make computers more "agnostic" to the operating systems and software used.

Currently, VMware's solution, which is not an open source application, supports "all major Linux operating systems," according to an announcement issued by the foundation.

VMware plans to contribute its Virtual Machine Interface to the foundation as an open specification. The company also expects to work with the Linux operating system kernel community on a virtualization interface, which is described by the foundation as a "source-level paravirtualization interface (paravirt-ops)."

The paravirt-ops can improve system performance by allowing information to be exchanged between the guest operating system and the hypervisor. Or, as VMware explains on its Web site: "By allowing the guest operating system to indicate its intent to the hypervisor, each can cooperate to obtain better performance when running in a virtual machine. This type of communication is referred to as paravirtualization."

Last year, VMware released an open source version of its VMware Tools. The company also started an open source collaboration project for those tools.

Other areas where VMware plans to connect with the Linux Foundation include "high-performance computing (HPC), managed desktops, Web 2.0 technologies, and software as a service (SaaS) in virtualized environments," the foundation announced.

The Linux Foundation is a nonprofit foundation, typically supported by open source companies, that promotes the many flavors of open source Linux.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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