Xen Cloud Platform hits 1.0 beta

Just before Thanksgiving, Xen.org released the first beta of the long awaited Xen Cloud Platform (XCP) 1.0.

XCP can be considered an evolution of Citrix XenServer, as described by Citrix itself:

XCP is taken directly from the XenServer code base with the removal of the source code for the Microsoft drivers as well as the binaries for the XenCenter management solution that runs on Windows. The products are identical beyond that. The only real issue in terms of production is that XCP will always be ahead of the XenServer product as Citrix and other companies use XCP as a place to trial new features before they are released in a stable “production” / “supported” product. It really depends on the level of support you need and if you want to be the first kid on the block with the new product.

Originally announced in early September 2009, XCP has been in development for almost one year before reaching version 0.5, its first, stable, production-ready build.
Version 1.0 introduces a few platform modifications and improvements, including:

  • Scheduled backup of VMs via snapshot/export (VMPR – VM Protection and Recovery)
  • Integration with Citrix XenCenter
  • Integration with cluster storage system VastSKY
  • Support for local storage caching (to reduce load on shared storage)
  • Support for booting from SAN with multipathing
  • Support for Ubuntu and Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6 guest operating systems
  • Inclusion of Linux kernel 2.6.32
  • Inclusion of blktap (“block tap”) userspace toolkit version 2

XCP continues to be based on Xen 3.4.2. The switch on Xen 4.0, while planned, may not happen for the 1.0 release.