Sun is adding support for the Open Virtualization Format standard to its VirtualBox virtualization software. With the OVF standard incorporated into VirtualBox 2.2, users can not only build virtual machines, but also export them from a development situation and import them into a production environment. Sun also is adding greater hypervisor optimization, 3D graphics acceleration for Linux and Solaris applications, and support for Apple's upcoming 64-bit Snow Leopard platform.
Sun Microsystems is putting support for the new Open Virtualization Format
into its VirtualBox 2.2 virtualization software.
Sun announced the availability of VirtualBox 2.2 April 8, less than a month
after unveiling the beta of its virtualization
Incorporating support for the Open Virtualization Format, or OVF, was
important, according to Sun officials. The standard is part of the DMTF
(Distributed Management Task Force) initiative. The OVF enables virtual
machines or appliances-essentially preinstalled and preconfigured virtual
machines-to be imported and exported.
Due to the combination of the standard with VirtualBox 2.2, users can build virtual
machines and then export them from a test and development situation and import
them into a production environment, Sun officials said. It also increases the
interoperability between VirtualBox 2.2 software and any other technologies
that support the OVF standard.
"VirtualBox has always been a fantastic tool for developers to [use to]
create multiple virtual machines, network them together and deploy them using
nearly any operating system," Jim McHugh, vice president of data center
software marketing at Sun, said in a statement. "Now, with the new import
and export features of the VirtualBox 2.2 release, users can quickly and easily
put their development environments into production, on the desktop, the server
or even in the cloud."
Other new features of VirtualBox 2.2 include ramping up the speed of the
software through hypervisor optimizations, and three-dimensional graphics
acceleration for Linux and Solaris applications using the OpenGL standard,
which enables use of a new class of applications that can be run in a virtual
There also is support for Apple's upcoming 64-bit Snow Leopard platform, an
increase in maximum memory size of guests to 16GB and a new host-interface
networking mode, which makes it easier for users to run server applications in
virtual machines, Sun officials said.
Sun touted the growth of the use of VirtualBox, which has had more than 11
million downloads worldwide since October 2007. During that time, there also were 3.5
million registrations, Sun said.
The VirtualBox software is free for personal use, although for wider
enterprise deployments subscriptions start at $30 per user per year.
VirtualBox, go here.