olive-list Digest, Vol 2, Issue 1

Peter Chan pchan3 at stanford.edu
Wed Aug 28 16:08:42 EDT 2013


Hi Benjamin, 

I am trying to compare Olive and Xenserver in preserving software. Could you please give me advice on: 

1. Preservation: Are the virtual machines created using virt-manager easier to preserve than the virtual machines created using Xenserver? If yes, why? 

2. Performance: You told me that VMNetX provide local execution and thus would give better performance (speed) than XenClient (server execution). Do you have more to add? 

3. Easy of Use: As you have already known, I am not a programmer and have limited technical knowledge. It took me 30 minutes to install Xenserver, XenClient and to create a virtual machine under it. Now, I have WordPerfect run under MS DOS 6.22; a physical (Dell Desktop used by Robert Creeley - one of our collection) to virtual machine (Windows XP SP3) and a Windows 7 instance of my office machine in my Xenserver. It seems to me that it will be much more difficult to implement the Olive programs - install VMNetX client in Debian/Fedora/Red Hat/Ubuntu and a webserver. It seems the Xenserver approach can reach more non-technical people like me. The more people contribute to preserving software, the better. What do you think? 

Peter 


----- Original Message -----

From: "Benjamin Gilbert" <bgilbert at cs.cmu.edu> 
To: olive-list at lists.andrew.cmu.edu 
Sent: Wednesday, August 28, 2013 11:31:28 AM 
Subject: Re: olive-list Digest, Vol 2, Issue 1 

On 08/28/2013 12:02 PM, Peter Chan wrote: 
> 1. You mentioned I can use "VMNetX client" 
> ((https://olivearchive.org/docs/vmnetx/install/) for packaging and 
> running VMs. My initial understanding of VMNetX is that it is just a 
> client to run VMs hosted in a webserver. So, do you mean I can use 
> VMNetX to create VMs? 

VMNetX includes a tool, "vmnetx-generate", for creating VM packages. 
See the vmnetx-generate(1) manual page for details. The workflow is: 
create a virtual machine in virt-manager, package it with 
vmnetx-generate, and upload. 

> 2. Will the VM packages prepared using VMNetX run under other software 
> other than VMNetX? 

No; they are specially designed to support demand-paged execution. But 
the packages are created from virt-manager VMs, which of course will run 
in virt-manager. 

> 3. At this moment, VMNetX run under different versions of Linux. Any 
> estimated release date for Mac/Windows based VMNetX? 

We aren't planning to have a full version of VMNetX for Windows/Mac 
because KVM doesn't run on those platforms. We are working on a 
workaround involving thin clients. :-( Institutions that want to 
support Windows/Mac machines will be able to set up a Linux server 
running, in essence, a headless version of VMNetX. We will release a 
Windows version of VMNetX that connects to such a server rather than 
running VMs locally. Of course, this won't be as good as local 
execution. But it still has the advantage that the Olive server can be 
far away, and the execution server does not need to store any persistent 
data. 

--Benjamin Gilbert 

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