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Xen Project Well Represented at SUSECon and openSUSE Summit

By November 21, 2013March 4th, 2019Announcements

What do a chameleon, a panda, and a mouse have in common?  More than you might imagine, unless you were present at SUSECon and the openSUSE Summit at the Walt Disney Coronado Springs resort last week in Florida.  During the week, it was clear that the SUSE chameleon and Xen panda could happily coexist in Mickey Mouse’s home turf.

Geeko, the openSUSE Chameleon

I had the opportunity to attend and speak at both conferences. The week started with 3 and a half days of SUSECon, an event dedicated to SUSE’s commercial Linux products, and finished with 2 days of openSUSE Summit, which celebrates the Open Source distribution. Key people from both worlds filled the halls, and the schedule boasted an excellent assortment of talks.
At least a half dozen different sessions included some Xen-related content at SUSECon, not to mention additional sessions at openSUSE Summit.  Both the Open Source openSUSE distribution and the commercial SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) boast support for multiple virtualization engines (Xen, KVM, Linux containers, etc.).  While this might not seem too significant, it is a refreshing departure from many companies in the industry which insist on hawking their preferred virtualization technology. On platforms where hypervisors have equal footing, Xen has the opportunity to shine — and usually does.

Our buddy, the Xen Panda

Some of the Xen-related SUSECon sessions I attended included:

A Xen Cluster Success Story Using the SLES HA Extension

Mark Robinson, Director of MrLinux Ltd., described a successful Xen virtualization cluster deployment using SLES with the HA Extension.  His slides are available here.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server as a Virtualization Host

SUSE’s Michal Svec, Senior Product Manager, and Bruce Rogers, Consulting Software Engineer, explained how Xen and KVM on SLES provide a great alternative to expensive closed source virtualization solutions.  Slides can be found here.

Survey of Virtualization Tools in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11

SUSE’s Jim Fehlig, known in the Xen community for his work with libvirt among other things, discussed the libvirt architecture and how it provides key services for manipulating Xen and KVM on the SLES platform.

Using Linux Containers as a Virtualization Option

SUSE Sales Engineer Mike Friesenegger joined Michal Svec to describe LXC and how it compares to traditional hypervisors like Xen.  You can download the slides here.

SAP HANA, powered by SLES

Arne Arnold, Product Manager of SAP AG, spoke about HANA, the powerful new entry from SAP. He also said that SAP was developing a version of the product which would run on an Open Source hypervisor… and that the hypervisor selected was Xen!

Securing your Xen Virtualization Environment

And, of course, yours truly had to get into the act, discussing some of Xen’s fine-grain security features.  The slides can be found here.
Plus, I had the opportunity to present two talks at openSUSE Summit: Xen: Open Source Hypervisor Designed for Clouds and 15 Years of Open Source: It’s About the People.
Unfortunately, none of these sessions were recorded, but slides for most of the sessions are available in the SUSECon Session List.
Other notable speakers in the openSUSE world included Robert Schweikert, Jos Poortvliet, and Alexander Graf, among others. The week was rich in content for Geekos and Pandas alike.

And a little more…

For those of you who would like to see a video of the Xen Security talk, you can click below to see George Dunlap doing his original version of the talk at LinuxCon Europe: