New Linux kernel expands virtualisation support

by admin July 15, 2008 at 4:23 pm

Open-source developers on Sunday released the latest stable version of the Linux kernel, version 2.6.26, adding improvements for wireless, virtualisation, multimedia and other features.

New kernel editions are normally adopted as rapidly as possible into mainstream Linux operating system distributions, bringing the new features directly into use on production systems.

The new kernel appears three months after version 2.6.25, a longer-than-usual release cycle, Linux creator Linus Torvalds said in an email announcing the release.

Among the most significant improvements are changes to the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) virtualisation software, first included in the kernel in February of last year. KVM normally uses the technique of full virtualisation, which simulates all the underlying hardware necessary to run a given client system, with the support of virtualisation technologies built into AMD and Intel chips. The latest kernel update adds limited support for paravirtualisation, a technique that only partially virtualises the hardware in order to improve performance.

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