Microsoft Updates Linux Code

Microsoft releases enhancements to the Hyper-V Linux Integration Services that the company contributed to the Linux community in 2009.

Microsoft has released enhancements to the Hyper-V Linux Integration Services that the company contributed to the Linux community in 2009.

In a move many compared to seeing pigs fly, "Microsoft submitted source code for the Hyper-V Linux Integration Services to the Linux Kernel Community last July to provide the integration that customers were looking for with Hyper-V," Brett Shoemaker of Microsoft wrote in a Port 25 blog post March 31. "The Integration Services (ISs) are now part of the Linux kernel (as of 2.6.32)." Shoemaker also said:

""Today's beta release of Integration Services adds the following new functionality:- SMP support for up to 4 virtual CPUs- Integrated shutdown, which provides the ability to gracefully shutdown Linux from the Hyper-V console (management partition)- Timesync, which keeps the time in the guest OS synchronized with the management partition.""

He said interested parties can acquire the beta version of the new Linux Integration Components here.

Shoemaker also said, "Microsoft developed the ISs to enhance the performance of Linux when virtualized on Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V. The Linux Integration Services allow Linux to run in an 'enlightened mode' on top of Hyper-V. Without this code, Linux runs but without the same high performance."

In a separate post on the issue, Mike Sterling of Microsoft's virtualization team said:

""Customers who have a heterogeneous operating system environment desire their virtualization platform to provide support for all operating systems that they have in their datacenters. We have supported Linux as a guest operating system on our virtualization platform from the days of Virtual Server and continue to enhance our support in that regard. In July of last year, we submitted our Linux Integration Services for Hyper-V to the Linux community so that they can be included in the Linux kernel. We have seen great support from the community, having received over 200 patches.""

Shoemaker added:

""With support agreements in place with Novell and Red Hat and a continued commitment from Microsoft to have Linux be a first-class citizen on Hyper-V, customers with heterogeneous environments (like Auburn University) have even greater interoperability. Not only can they run Linux on Hyper-V, but they can also manage Windows and non-Windows applications and hypervisors using System Center. Timesync and SMP [symmetric multiprocessing] support are two key enhancements that were requested by our customers, and now they are here.""

Sterling said, "This version of the integration services for Hyper-V ... supports Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP3 [Service Pack 3], SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2/5.3/5.4."