Introduction

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization provides IT departments with the tools to meet the challenges of managing complex environments. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization's rich virtualization platform enables administrators to reduce the cost and complexity of large deployments. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform includes:
  • High availability to quickly configure virtual machines for fault tolerance.
  • Live migration to move virtual machines between physical hosts without interruption.
  • System scheduler to create policies to dynamically balance compute resources.
  • Power saver to create policies to conserve power and cooling costs.
  • Image manager to create, manage and provision virtual machines.
  • Storage virtualization to enable consistent access of common storage from any server.
  • Multi-level administration to enable administration of physical infrastructure as well as administration of virtual objects.
  • Ability to convert existing virtual machines on foreign hypervisors to Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform. This is completely described in the V2V Guide.
  • A range of reports either from the reports module based on JasperReports, or from the data warehouse. The reports enable administrators to monitor and analyze information on virtual machines, hosts and storage usage and performance.

1. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Architecture

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform consists of three components:
  • Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Hypervisor - based on Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM), is a thin virtualization layer deployed across the server's infrastructure. Because it is a core part of the Linux kernel, KVM is a highly efficient means of providing virtualization.
  • Agents and tools include VDSM which runs in the hypervisor or host. These provide local management for virtual machines, networks and storage.
  • Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform management infrastructure allows users to view and manage all the system components, machines and images from a single, powerful interface. The management system GUI provides a comprehensive range of features, including powerful search capabilities, resource management, live migrations, and provisioning.
Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Platform Overview

Figure 1. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Platform Overview


1.1. System Components

The various components work seamlessly together to enable the system administrator to set up, configure, and maintain the virtualized environment through an intuitive graphical interface.

1.1.1. About the Components

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform consists of one or more hosts (either Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Hypervisors or Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.5 and higher systems) and at least one manager. The virtual machines are installed on the hosts. The system and all its components are managed through a centralized management system.
Hosts run the user's Windows XP, Windows 2000, Windows 7, or Linux virtual machines on Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Hypervisor or Red Hat Enterprise Linux (5.5 and higher) and KVM virtualization technology (Kernel-based Virtual Machine). The hypervisor also includes a resource optimization layer that allows for better desktop interactivity and management.
The Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager is a service running on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 server that provides interfaces for controlling the Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform. It manages provisioning, connection protocols, user session logons and logoffs, virtual desktop pools, virtual machine images, and the high availability and clustering systems. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager requires Windows to remotely access the Administration Portal, but the Manager itself is hosted on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux server.

1.1.2. About the Virtual Machines

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform enables you to create virtual machines that perform the same functions as physical machines. Using a standard Web browser, users can run virtual machines that behave like physical desktops. Multiple levels of permissions allow users with different roles to manage virtual machines to meet the requirements of the enterprise.

1.1.3. About SPICE

The SPICE protocol, which is installed on the client machine and runs on the client machine, allows you to experience PC-like graphics performance while connected to your virtual machine's computing desktop environment. It supplies video at more than 30 frames per second, bi-directional audio (for soft-phones/IP phones), bi-directional video (for video telephony/video conferencing) and USB redirection from the client’s USB port into the virtual machine. SPICE also supports connection to multiple monitors with a single virtual machine. SPICE Client is installed on the client machine by ActiveX when the virtual machine is accessed through a browser from the Admin Portal or the User Portal.