Last month at the VMware EUC analyst day in Boston, I had the opportunity to discuss VMware’s extension of support for its Horizon VDI platform to enterprise Linux desktops. While what was shared is under NDA, it’s worth looking at why VMware is making this move.
Articles Tagged with Linux
Docker is one of those technologies that, without any great fuss and without anyone noticing, is now everywhere. My experience with Docker is fairly recent and fairly limited, but like many people, I had enough knowledge of it that when something complex came up in a project, I thought about Docker, went and investigated it, and came to the conclusion that it would solve that problem. I wouldn’t call Docker a “Swiss Army Knife”—it has so many more uses than that.
In the world of virtualization storage it seems all we talk about lately is flash and SSD. There is a good reason for that. Traditionally, storage capacity and storage performance were directly linked. Sure, you could choose different disk capacities, but in general you needed to add capacity in order to add performance because each disk, each “spindle” could only support a certain number of I/Os per second, or IOPS. This was governed by the mechanical nature of the drives themselves, which had to wait for the seek arm to move to a different place on disk, wait for the seek arm to stop vibrating from the move, wait for the desired sector to rotate underneath the read head, etc. There’s only so much of that type of activity that can be done in a second, and in order to do more of it you needed to add more drives. Of course that has drawbacks, like increased power draw, more parts so more chance of failure, and increased licensing costs since many storage vendors charged based on capacity.
Flash memory takes most of what we know about the physics of storage and throws it away. Because there are no moving parts, the act of seeking on a solid state disk is a completely logical one. There are no heads, no sectors, no rotation speeds. It’s all the speed of light and however fast the controller can go. As such, flash memory can do enormous numbers of IOPS, and if implemented well, it decouples storage performance from storage capacity. You save power, you save data center space, you save money in licensing fees, and your workloads run faster.
Almost every company in this day and age is trying to figure out how to become more agile. Now that infrastructure can be delivered as software, I am seeing a lot of innovation around the automation of environments. One of the most interesting innovations that I have seen is Docker. Docker is a Linux container engine that is simplifying the process of delivering environments.
The IT world is forever creating catchy new terms to label technologies in the hope that it will better communicate some vital marketing message. Sometimes this approach works, with few exceptions everybody understands what is meant by “thin client” and “zero client” even when the details of the implementation are wildly different – a Dell Wyse Xenith 2 zero client and a Pano Logic G2M zero client may have widely diverging approaches to delivering a zero configuration plug and play experience, but their appliance-like nature and operational benefits are the same. Sometimes it doesn’t; regardless of the merit of the technology it describes, type 0 hypervisor is a term that should be banished from any technical dictionary. And sometimes its too soon to tell. Microvisor is a term used to describe two very different virtualization technologies offered by Bromium and OK Labs that could conceivably compete in the same marketplace at some point in the future. So what about “Cloud Client”? Wikipedia does a good job of defining Cloud Client
Piston Cloud Computing raised a few eyebrows on Tuesday with the announcement that it was extending its Piston Enterprise OS (PentOS) to provide a platform for hosting virtual desktops (VDI) through an exclusive licensing deal with Toronto-based Gridcentric for its innovative Virtual Memory Streaming (VMS) technology.