More Improvements to the Linux Integration Services for Hyper-V

by Brett Shoemaker on March 31, 2010 10:01am

As you probably know, 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.

The Integration Services (ISs) are now part of the Linux kernel (as of 2.6.32), and today we released enhancements to the Linux ISs, which will hopefully generate excitement on the part of users.

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.

You can get your hands on the beta version of the new Linux Integration Components here.

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.

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 support are two key enhancements that were requested by our customers, and now they are here.

We will, of course, be contributing this code to the mainline Linux kernel. You can read more about this on the blog by Mike Sterling of the Virtualization team.

Now, time to get back to improving the experience of running Linux on Hyper-V!

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