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BMC's Virtualizer

I tested Virtualizer in our Syracuse University Real-World Labs®, installing it on a Red Hat Linux Enterprise Server 4. I also implemented Virtualizer Service Agents on virtual machines (VMs) running on VMware ESX Server 2.5.2 and a conventional Intel PIII server (dual 1,400-MHz processors) with 1,024 MB of RAM running Microsoft Windows 2003. Virtualizer scaled out new servers and other enterprise resources on demand. However, it didn't create new virtual machines on the fly. I'll have to wait for the next version for that.

Virtualizer comprises the Virtualizer itself and the server agents. Virtualizer orchestrates server management and hosts a Web console to configure and set policies or rules that trigger virtualization actions in demanding situations. If an application is down on one server, for example, or another server is suffering high CPU utilization, Virtualizer can add server, application, and storage resources automatically from a global pool to meet the failure or the demand.

The server agents run on Linux, Solaris or Windows. Agents collect server and application availability and performance data and communicate that information to the Virtualizer. They also let local command execution implement and enforce policies. All this is done over multicast, so you must enable multicast on switches and routers.

Getting Started

Virtualizer runs only on Red Hat Linux Advanced Server (AS) or Enterprise Server (ES) 2.1, 3, and 4. I used ES 4 on a dual processing Intel Xeon (3 GHz) server with 3,072 MB of RAM. That made for plenty of horsepower to meet BMC's minimum requirements: Intel P4 (3.4 GHz) with 512 MB of RAM.

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