Virtualization and Cloud Computing - A Summary
The UnifiedSessionsManager offers an integration framework for operations and management of local and remote sessions on physical and virtual machines. This comprises the ease of usage of state-of-the-art systems and the the actual implementation of concepts for the usage of virtual services for future concepts.
Therefore a generic abstraction layer has been defined in order to provide a service oriented view to provided session types. The UnifiedSessionsManager provides the conceptual building blocks comprising elements for the establishment and management of location independent resources of interactive and server based services.
The integration of physical and virtual machines into a stack of virtual machines - v-stacks - founds the base for the enhanced features of the so called Cloud-Computing environment. This provides for generic software services as SaaS.
The components comprise functions for application and administration of location independent, interactive and batch oriented services. Therefore a generic abstraction layer is provided which integrates various hypervisors, remote access utilities and local desktop functionality into a seamless and simplified commandline interface.
The current version supports:
- KVM, Qemu, VirtualBox, VMware(Workstation/Server/Player), and Xen
- Linux: CentOS, debian, Fedora, Mandriva, OpenSUSE, Scientific Linux, SUSE, UnbreakableLinux, Ubuntu
- FreeBSD, OpenBSD
- OpenSolaris, Solaris 10
- UserInterface: Shell/bash, RDP(rdesktop), X11, VNC(TightVNC/RealVNC), XTerm, GTerm, Emacs
- Physical Machines: Automated handling of Wake-On-LAN
- Security: SSH, sudo, ksu
Next versions are foreseen to support additionally:
- VMware(iESX), XenServer
- FreeOS, QNX, uCLinux, RTEMS
The contained tools, such as the automated scanners for the collection of present virtual machines into a spread-sheet compatible filedatabase, and the common call with a batch applicable shell interface are designed for painless usage once some basics are established. Particularly the usage of huge numbers of virtual machines could be simplified by various user defined identifiers for usage as call shortcuts. This comprises for example the possibility to define groups and use them together similar to a single machine.
In addition to the management of the user sessions including the involved physical and virtual machines a user interface for the presentation is included. The Interface is based on X11 and offers an abstraction layer with logical addressing of single screens as well as monitor arrays. Specific features such as the conventional DISPLAY forwarding and a new defined CONNECTION forwarding are introduced. This allows the transparent handling of local and remote clients and the automated establishment of SSH tunnels for interconnection.
The UnifiedSessionsManager particularly provides the usage of nested virtual machines similar to a nested containment stack. The virtual stacks - v-stacks - offer a containment hierarchy as the environment for the assembly of multiple VM based services into an encapsulated new service, accessible by it's virtual gateway only. The internal interface could be of any conventional network communications type, whereas the actual assembly could be handled by the administrator solely by means of conventional network administration.
This offers particularly an adaptable approach for generic software configuration on server farms and blade clusters, but fits to a multi-core desktop perfectly as well. This is the basic facility for the introduction of virtual components - v-components - as new building blocks for virtualized network centric services.
Specific advanced features are supported as part of the implemented concept of v-stack:
- Implicit and automated boot and shutdown of underlying physical and virtual machines. This is supported for the boot of an operating system as well as for a specific contained application.
- Automated scanners, which scan local and remote filesystems for specific VMs and detect the appropriate type by specific match-filters. The results are stored into a local caching database compatible to popular spreadsheets.
- Virtaulized nameservice v-DNS, which includes v-host and v-ping. Various identifiers could be used to address a machine, including user defined labels.
The main features comprise:
- Management of distributed and stacked Virtual Machines.
- Management of Desktops and Workspaces on Multiple Monitors.
- Seamless access to all types of sessions.
- Support of encrypted connections only, based on SSH.
- Contains various tools for handling of a few up to several thousand VMs and PMs.