Red Hat Moves to Expand Server Virtualization Interoperability
Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Microsoft Windows Server to be validated and supported on the companies' corresponding virtualization platforms
RALEIGH, N.C. - February 16, 2009 - Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE: RHT), the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that, in response to strong customer demand, it has signed reciprocal agreements with Microsoft Corporation to enable increased interoperability for the companies' virtualization platforms. Each company will join the other's virtualization validation/certification program and will provide coordinated technical support for their mutual server virtualization customers. The reciprocal validations will allow customers to deploy heterogeneous, virtualized Red Hat and Microsoft solutions with confidence.
"The world of IT today is a mixture of virtualized and non-virtualized environments. Red Hat is looking to help our customers extend more rapidly into virtualized environments, including mixed Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Windows Server environments," said Mike Evans, vice president, Corporate Development at Red Hat. "Red Hat listened when our customers asked us to provide interoperability between our respective guest and host virtualization solutions. We are excited to announce these agreements today as the result of our collaboration with Microsoft."
With the efforts being undertaken today through this announcement, Red Hat and Microsoft customers will have the ability to run Microsoft Windows Server and Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtual servers on either host environment with configurations that will be tested and supported by both virtualization and operating system leaders.
The key components of the reciprocal agreements are:
- Red Hat will validate Windows Server guests to be supported on Red Hat Enterprise virtualization technologies.
- Microsoft will validate Red Hat Enterprise Linux server guests to be supported on Windows Server Hyper-V and Microsoft Hyper-V Server.
- Once each company completes testing, customers with valid support agreements will receive coordinated technical support for running Windows Server operating system virtualized on Red Hat Enterprise virtualization, and for running Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtualized on Windows Server Hyper-V and Microsoft Hyper-V Server.
"Customers are rapidly adopting Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and in doing so are interested in support for running more operating systems on Hyper-V in their virtualized environment, including those from Red Hat," said Mike Neil, general manager of Virtualization Strategy at Microsoft. "We welcome Red Hat's participation in our Server Virtualization Validation Program and look forward to ongoing collaboration with them to bring the benefits of coordinated technical support to our customers for their heterogeneous IT environments."
"Physical hardware doesn't care what operating system is installed on top of it, and virtual hardware provided by a hypervisor should be no different," said Gary Chen, Research Manager, Enterprise Virtualization Software at IDC. "Most customers run heterogeneous networks and having interoperability between these two major platforms will make virtualizing these environments much easier for enterprise customers. IDC research shows that Windows and Red Hat Enterprise Linux are two of the main operating environments deployed by enterprises, accounting for 80% of the x86 operating systems running on hypervisors. It is great to see two of the big platform vendors put aside their competitive differences and put the customer first."
The agreements establish coordinated technical support for Microsoft and Red Hat's mutual customers using server virtualization, and the activities included in these agreements do not require the sharing of IP. Therefore, the agreements do not include any patent or open source licensing rights, and additionally contain no financial clauses, other than industry-standard certification/validation testing fees.
Validations for Red Hat and Microsoft server virtualization solutions included in the reciprocal certification and support agreements are underway today, with the first results expected later this year.