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Red Hat Hauls in Qumranet for $100M

Open source software giant RedHat has bought Israeli startup Qumranet for $100 million in an attempt to boost its virtualization story and challenge Microsofts Hyper-V offering.

Qumranet touts its Solid ICE software as a way for users to virtualize their desktops thanks to the vendor’s Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM) technology, which turns the Linux kernel into a bare-metal hypervisor. Solid ICE lets users host desktops in KVM virtual machines, and also provides centralized management, storage, and policy enforcement for the desktops.

“We already deliver and are expanding a set of virtualization solutions including management, provisioning, migration, servers, and storage,” said Brian Stevens, Red Hat’s CTO, during a conference call this morning. “With Qumranet, we’re acquiring some key technology components which will accelerate this development, enabling more companies to use virtualization more cost-effectively.”

With Microsoft planning an elaborate launch event for its own Hyper-V hypervisor in Bellevue, Wash. next week, Red Hat execs could not resist taking a swipe at their arch-rival during this morning’s call.

“The acquisition of Qumranet means that Red Hat is positioned to be one of only two companies in the world with a comprehensive virtualization solutions portfolio,” said Paul Cornier, Red Hat’s president of products and technologies. ”We realize this is a bold statement -- but the lack of this breadth of solution is the Achilles heel of many other vendors.”

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