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Re: [Xen-users] Xen support in various Linux kernels

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Subject: Re: [Xen-users] Xen support in various Linux kernels
From: Mark Williamson <mark.williamson@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 9 Nov 2007 17:09:16 +0000
Cc: David Stone <unclestoner@xxxxxxxxx>, Dominik Klein <dk@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
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> >  - Xen has only patched kernels up to 2.6.18 with Xen support.


> >  - However, some Linux distributions may have patched later kernels
> > with Xen support.  For instance when I install Fedora 7 with Xen
> > support, I notice the xenified Dom0 kernel that is used, as well as
> > any DomU kernels creatd by virt-manager, are 2.6.20.

OS distros have forward ported the Xen patches to other kernels, but it's 
still based on the mainline Xen patches.

> >  - But, as of 2.6.23, Xen support has been upstreamed into the vanilla
> > Linux kernel.  So theoretically it will no longer be necessary for Xen
> > to maintain a fork of the Linux kernel and integrate the Linux kernel
> > build with the Xen build?
> Afaik, the Xen parts in vanilla are only for domU.

Only for domU, and not with full functionality: suspend / resume is not 
supported (and therefore live migration too), framebuffer isn't supported, 
ballooning isn't supported.  Just the basic functionality required to boot an 
SMP guest with block and net access.

The code in kernel.org vanilla is currently a different tree to Xen's 
XenLinux, so it's different code and less well tested.  There have been some 
bugs in 2.6.23 - I believe I know of one which may not be fixed yet in 2.6.24 
but I need to investigate.

Once the kernel.org Xen support has been stabilised, solidified and fleshed 
out, the eventual plan would be for Xen's XenLinux to just be a patch adding 
extra functionality (dom0 functionality + any extra domU functionality) on 
top of mainline Linux's Xen support.


Dave: Just a question. What use is a unicyle with no seat?  And no pedals!
Mark: To answer a question with a question: What use is a skateboard?
Dave: Skateboards have wheels.
Mark: My wheel has a wheel!

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