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Red Hat’s Server & Desktop Virtualization Move in Together

RHEV for Desktops will deploy Hosted Virtual Desktop (HVD) configurations, a k a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)

Red Hat's desktop virtualization has joined its server virtualization in the 2.2 rev of its standalone KVM hypervisor Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV).

Like 2.1 seven months ago, 2.2 can host and manage both Red Hat Linux and Windows VMs and now offers a single infrastructure for managing server and desktop virtualization deployments.

RHEV for Desktops will deploy Hosted Virtual Desktop (HVD) configurations, a k a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). It offers a web-based connection broker for users to access their hosted virtual desktops, coupled with the open source SPICE remote rendering technology for multimedia, including multiple monitors, HD-quality video and bi-directional audio/video for video conferences. Templating, thin provisioning and desktop pooling are also included.

The desktop piece supports XP, Windows 7 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop. Devon IT and Wyse are supporting the stuff with their thin clients.

The 2.2 release can now support guests with up to 16 virtual CPUs and 256GB of memory per virtual machine. By comparison VMware's only good for eight vCPUs and 255GB of RAM while Microsoft is at four vCPUs and 64GB of RAM.

There are new virtual machine conversion capabilities in 2.2 through a V2V tool designed to automate the conversion of VMware or Xen virtual machines for use in RHEV and to simplify things it can move virtual machine images and templates between environments complements of the Open Virtualization Format (OVF).

Fujitsu, IBM and NTT Communications use RHEV in their public cloud deployments. Red Hat considers that a real coup. It predicts it will catch the second wave of virtualization and narrow the gap with VMware. It says the initial wave was driven primarily by the poor utilization on Windows servers. The second will be driven by a need for pervasive data center virtualization and internal cloud flexibility and of course it preaches the dangers of lock-in.

RHEV's theoretical scalability is supposed to shoot up once a prospective 2.3 rev is coupled with Red Hat Linux 6 to 4,096 cores and 64TB of memory on a single host thanks to the scalability of the Linux kernel.

Right now on the server side it claims a maximum host configuration of 96 core and ITB RAM to VMware's 64 cores and 512GB and Microsoft's 48 cores and ITB and to be 3x cheaper than VMware over three years and 2x  cheaper than Microsoft.

It figures it's roughly 2x cheaper than VMware and Citrix on the desktop side.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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