By Ricardo Marin Matinata, Linux Architect, KVM and Cloud on POWER, IBM
The initial version 0.5 (beta) of the OpenPOWER HostOS repository is available!
As new OpenPOWER hardware features and servers are developed by multiple partners, it becomes a challenge to deploy them in an OS environment that leverages a known and tried base and, at the same time, allows for the flexibility that is required to support the diversity of requirements. To address this challenge, IBM is launching a new collaboration model: an open community for OpenPOWER hardware enablement and features that is built on top of a reference Host OS/KVM for the Power architecture.
Through this community, IBM and OpenPOWER are providing an open source repository that is seeded with the the core elements, allowing OpenPOWER partners to build and validate their own deliverables. This repository includes the core kernel as well as other key component pieces to enable KVM virtualization, along with build scripts and a validation suite. These components enable members of the OpenPOWER ecosystem to build their own Host OS with the optional support of KVM on Power and, most importantly, allow them to contribute back to this community. Even further, an additional usage model that this repository provides is an abstraction layer that is based upon KVM virtualization. This option allows OpenPOWER partners to deploy new hardware features and servers while maintaining a stable environment for guest operating systems.
While IBM remains committed to each respective upstream community, this new community will help all to advance the OpenPOWER ecosystem and ensure some feature consistency. Stay tuned for version 1.0, which will bring additional stability and more Linux enablement for OpenPOWER innovations, such as new processor features, as well as advancements on virtualization technology.