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Novell Steps Up Virtualization Support

Novell will be the first major vendor to integrate a virtualization hypervisor into its operating system when it launches SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 this spring.

At its BrainShare 2006 conference this week, Novell CEO Jack Messman is expected to announce integrated support for the Xen open-source hypervisor in SLES 10, due to ship next quarter, and in its next Open Enterprise Server (OES), sources said. The technology will virtualize guest operating systems, including Windows and NetWare.

Novell, Waltham, Mass., also will emphasize its decision to offer all of its products going forward, including GroupWise and Zenworks, on the Linux platform first before Windows, sources said.

“Novell’s SUSE is doing the right thing virtualizing NetWare on Xen because it gives them a way to preserve legacy code base going forward. They’ve turned NetWare into a first class para-virtualized guest,” said one source, who requested anonymity. “They’re on track for shipping SLES 10 in the May/June time frame.”

The move will enable customers to run fully virtualized NetWare virtual machines on the Linux distribution and on OES. The latter offers Linux services on top of the Linux and NetWare kernels. Xen 3.0, completed in December, supports Windows, NetWare, Linux and Solaris.

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