Announcing oVirt: a web based virtual machine management application

Posted: February 14th, 2008 | Filed under: libvirt, Virt Tools | No Comments »

Way back in Fedora Core 5, we introduced the libvirt management library for virtual machines. Shortly thereafter in Fedora Core 6 we introduced Virtual Machine Manager (aka virt-manager) desktop application. In Fedora Core 7 we introduced KVM as a virtualization technology. In Fedora 8 we introduced secure remote management of virtual machines using TLS/x509, further enhanced to support Kerberos in Fedora 9. Meanwhile the FreeIPA project has been busy working to integrate Kerberos and LDAP (Fedora Directory Server).

Clearly the time has come to move beyond managing handfuls of virtual machines with a desktop application, and take full advantage of all the infrastructure we’ve painstakingly prepared. To move to a web-based management capable of scaling from a handful of machines, up to an entire data center, allowing administration from any client OS whether Linux or Windows or Mac OS-X.

It is time for oVirt.

Quoting Hugh’s announcement

oVirt is:

    * A small OS image that runs libvirt and hosts virtual machines
    * A Web-based virtual machine management console

oVirt goals:

    * Empower virtual machine owners without giving up control of
    * Automate virtual machine clustering, load balancing, and SLA
    * Simplify management of large numbers of machines
    * Work across platforms and architectures

oVirt uses:

    * A kerberos/LDAP server for authentication and authorization
      (oVirt ships with FreeIPA)
    * DNS/DHCP services on the local LAN -- or provides them for oVirt
      hosts over a private network if desired
    * Libvirt for virtual machine management, storage management, and
      secure remote communication
    * collectd for stats gathering and monitoring
    * Rails for rapid, flexible development

oVirt mailing list:
oVirt IRC:
oVirt website:

Fedora 9 (current rawhide) is providing the underlying OS distribution for both the “managed nodes” running guests, and the management application itself. We’re targetting libvirt as the mangement API, to avoid being tied into any single virtualization technology, though KVM is our current technology of choice due to its clean integration with the Linux kernel, and its ever improving performance.

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