Archive for April, 2006

NEW: Very slick Virtual Appliances have made some very slick virtual machines available. Currently they are offering a basic static webserver and a Tomcat application server on their website. The images are very light weigth. The basic webserver is only a 11mb download and the Tomcat appliance is just a 53mb download. The appliances are not just available as VMware image, but also as XEN image.

These virtual appliances are really a very good example of what a virtual appliance should look like. They are small, very efficient, have a small footprint and are very easy to work with. When you power on the virtual machine, there is no login prompt, like a true appliance. It just points you to a website from where you can do all the configuration settings. The interface is very nice designed and works very easy.

The Tomcat virtual appliance

You webpages are not actually stored in the virtual machine, but you configure a form a shared storage thru the management interface that can use a NFS or Samba share. The Tomcat virtual machine is configured with 256mb of ram and provides excellent performance. And all this for free! Wow, what a great world we live in 🙂

The appliances are still in beta, but are really already looking very sharp. I am looking forward to see more of these kind of virtual appliances from this company. Hopefully they will make a nice small, secured, single purpose webserver with PHP and MySQL, that would really rock.

Visit the virtual appliance website here

Vizioncore releases a Free version of esxRanger and esxCharter!!

Vizioncore just released esxBasics for ESX Server . For people who are not familiar with vizioncore products; esxRanger is a product to make and automate backups of your virtual machines and esxCharter allows you to see graphically the perfomance on your servers and virtual machines.

According to the press release the free product includes basic versions of both vizioncore’s flagship esxRangerâ„¢ and esxCharterâ„¢, esxBasics provides a range of dynamic backup and monitoring tools for the ESX Server environment. vizioncore’s esxBasics also enables ESX Server administrators to sample vizioncore’s industry-leading applications for non-mission critical applications. As esxBasics users move toward making virtualization a strategic core platform in their datacenters, upgrading to the standard or professional versions of esxRanger and esxCharter products grant users access to a larger feature set, product updates, and technical support—all without switching from the products they’ve come to rely on.

esxRanger UI

Features of vizioncore’s esxBasics include:

  • esxRanger provides full image backup protection (without interfering with ongoing server operations), full restore capabilities and a centralized Windows interface. esxRanger also enables Windows scheduler support in the GUI, allowing users to schedule esxRanger to perform online dynamic backups of guest operating systems on the VMware ESX Server;
  • esxCharter provides real-time ESX Server monitoring, enabling ESX administrators to monitor in real-time how much of the CPU the VM occupies, as well as how much memory is being used on an active, swapped, or shared basis. esxCharter also offers the ‘At-a-Glance’ view, providing a real-time snapshot of the current performance and specifications of the user’s VM Server—including important service console information.
  • Download esxBasics here

    VMware ESX Server 2.5.3 released

    With this new release VMware ESX Server reaches build 22981 and adds support for a number of different Guest Operating Systems:

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3.0 Update 6
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4.0 Update 2
  • Microsoft Windows 2003 Release 2
  • SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 Service Pack 3
  • Be aware that when you update your ESX Server to this new version, that this is not just a small update.
    The upgrade package alone is 291MB in size and that alone should tell you something.

    This new release of VMware ESX Server contains a major overhaul of the ESX Service Console, effectively upgrading a large portion of the RPMs from a RedHat 7.2 version to a RedHat Enterprise Linux 2.1 AS version. This is good news, ofcourse, if you need to install packages in the Service Console, as it is somewhat easier to find the right packages for this newer version of RedHat. But it can certainly cause some troubles if you already installed packages in you current ESX Server, which may now become disfunctional because of the upgrade. So as always, be very carefull when upgrading to ESX Server 2.5.3 and make sure you documented all your custom changes to the Service Console carefully.

    The upgrade of the RPMs also fixes some security issues that were present in some of the older RPM’s. To get a full list of the updated RPM’s and the security issues that were addressed, you can read this pdf.

    You can download the new ESX Server Release (or the upgrade package) here.

    VMware is already running intern it’s products on Macs!

    Well I can confirm to you that VMware already has its software running in house on Mac Machines, so we only have to wait for a first public beta version. Diane Greene (The VMware boss) just publicly mentioned also that VMware is already running Mac based products in the VMware labs. Read the article here

    First Virtualization Product available for MacOS (intel)

    Parallels has done it! It’s the first virtualization company that made a virtualization product available for Mac OS X (intel). It is still in beta, but this is of course great news for Mac Owners. I wonder what other virtualization companies will follow.

    Screenshot of Parallels Workstation for Mac OS X

    Download the beta here

    Care about security? This might help…

    VMware ESX and VirtualCenter received recently a evaluation assurance level (EAL) for these products of EAL 2. This certificate is given by the CCEVS. The certificate is signed by the CCEVS and the NSA.

    View the certificate and additional documentation

    Daylight follows a dark night.

    Suddenly from the dark, the big Microsoft has awakend to the virtualization needs of their customers. From today Virtual Server 2005 R2 is available for free, it will support Linux operating systems, has Virtual Machine Additions available for Red Hat and SuSe and becomes an ‘open standard’ company by providing the masses with a (licensed) virtual disk format.

    Read more about Microsoft’s news:
    from microsoft itself
    The Register

    XenEnterprise can run Windows

    At least this is what the register is reporting today. XenSource is introducing XenEnterprise, based on Xen 3.0 and using VT technology it should be able to run windows operating systems besides Linux. I checked out the XenSource site, but could not find any information about it or the actual software, so not sure if this is a late April 1st foolsday joke or that we just have to be a bit more patient.

    Read the he register article here

    VMware addresses needs for FANS :-)

    …and their kids!

    Ok, it is not major news, but for the die hard VMware fans good news. Like all superstars, VMware today has also opened up its VMware store, where you can buy hats, shirts and even baby clothes all around the Virtual Machine and VMware theme. So now you can send your little kids to s chool with a shirt ‘Virtual Eating Machine’ . Let’s hope not too many other people will ask the kids what that means, else you also need to teach the kids the elevator pitch about virtualization.

    Enjoy your shopping!

    For your kids