ConVirt for Xen

ConVirt is a powerful virtualization management platform for administering and automating your Xen infrastructure. Use ConVirt if you need centralized management; if you need high availability, backup & restore, and workload management; if you need self-service for your customers; or if you want to manage your virtualization infrastructure from a "single pane of glass".

The Challenge of Managing Xen

Xen is a mature open-source hypervisor used by enterprises and Internet hosting service companies. While Xen has a powerful, command-line syntax that can be easily scripted, one of the biggest challenges remains its lack of enterprise-class management tools:

  • Manual and Fragile Management – Historically, to gain the cost benefits of open source virtualization, you had to take on the resource-intensive, error-prone process of managing host servers and virtual machines manually, using a command line interface and a patchwork of custom scripts. 
    The challenge – how can you find a scalable way to manage Xen in deployments requiring hundreds or thousands of virtual machines.
  • No Easy Way To Get High Availability (HA) – The advantages to a highly available Xen environment are obvious: If one host in the virtual platform goes down, all virtual machines running on it will automatically and transparently be moved to one of the remaining hosts, ensuring uninterrupted service delivery and business continuity. Unfortunately, Xen lacks a built-in HA solution. As a result, Xen admins needing this enterprise-class capability have had to turn to basic Linux clustering as an HA solution. They’ve found that this approach is hard to understand, heavyweight, and complex to set up and manage at scale. 
    The challenge – how can you deploy Xen HA at a lower level of complexity and risk?
  • Unreliable Backup of Running VMs – As virtual environments grow larger and the applications running in them become more important to business success, demand for quick, efficient backup of virtual machines running on Xen is becoming critical. Unfortunately, Xen lacks a built-in backup and restore solution. Even with 3rd party add-on solutions, backing up a live Xen virtual machine is difficult, as its hard to guarantee the VM file system is in a consistent state 
    The challenge – how can you make quick and accurate disk backups of running VMs?
  • Siloed/Fragmented Virtualization Management – Today, more than half of enterprise data centers actively use more than one hypervisor in their environment. This is often the result of the normal data center evolution and evaluation process, although more and more, organizations are explicitly bringing in additional hypervisor platforms as second-source strategies, or as the virtualization layer underlying their private cloud platform. 
    The challenge – how do you break down these silos to manage your virtual data center from a single pane of glass?


ConVirt for Xen

ConVirt delivers enterprise-grade management for Xen, enabling you to manage thousands of hosts and virtual machines in a highly scalable and secure fashion. With advanced automation features such as high availability, backup and recovery, and policy-based workload management, ConVirt brings Xen up to the same enterprise-grade standard of automation and management that you are used to with VMWare:


Manage your Xen Environment Centrally

Discover and manage all your Xen hosts from a central web-based console, including template-based provisioning and full VM lifecycle administration. ConVirt allows you to monitor, provision, and configure virtual machines at the server pool level, including shared storage and networks. In addition to supporting the most common virtual machine operations like start, stop and connect to VM console, ConVirt’s advanced administration capabilities include thin provisioning, compliance tracking, dynamic resource allocation management, drag-and-drop live migration, and intelligent virtual machine placement.


Add High Availability, Workload Management and Backup/Restore

ConVirt has advanced automation and scalability features necessary to run large scale or mission critical virtualization environments, all from a single integrated management console. High availabilityprovides failover services for both virtual machines and physical servers. Backup and restore supports both scheduled and on-demand backups, and dynamic workload management provides scheduled, policy-based workload migration to support server consolidation for power savings or load balancing across a pool of servers.


Self Service – Let Your Customers Help Themselves

A ConVirt Virtual Data Center (VDC) is a web-based self-service console that provides end users with the ability to manage a pre-defined set of virtual, cloud or physical machines. Data center administrators define the compute, network, storage, quota, and user requirements for an internal or external customer, then ConVirt automatically assembles the VDC from the available pool of resources in the data center, and creates an easy-to-use self-service console for customer administrators to use.


Optimize Your Hypervisor Mix

If you’re looking to reduce the high costs of your virtualized infrastructure by moving to Xen, or consolidate multiple hypervisor silos under a “single pane of glass”, ConVirt can help. One of the most powerful aspects of ConVirt is its ability to manage across a heterogeneous set of hypervisors and cloud platforms, including VMware, Hyper-V, KVM, Xen, Amazon Web Services, OpenStack, and others. By normalizing functionality across these platforms up to a “highest common denominator” level, ConVirt can apply a standard set of management capabilities across them, making it easier for your IT staff to scale and providing a viable “second source” option to reduce your costs.


Deliver Hybrid Cloud Services Combining Xen and Amazon

While Xen is gaining acceptance in the enterprise data center, Amazon Web Services rules in public clouds. IT organizations need the ability to deploy applications to both platforms, based on a well-defined set of requirements, governance and policy rules. ConVirt allows IT organizations to manage both of these sets of resources from a single pane of glass, delivering them to end customers via self-service Virtual Data Centers with well-defined quotas, isolation, and user models.