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Cisco IOS-XE and KVM

Interesting post at Virtualization.info about Cisco's new operating system, the most salient point being that with all the noise being made about Cisco's relationship with VMware, it's apparently basing the IOS-XE virtualization on KVM. Also, another (self-referential) mention of Cisco's third-party distributed virtual switch for VI3.


My colleague Ken Novak has pointed me to a couple of posts by Andy Dornan, one about Riverbed's use of linux-kvm applications as part of the RiOS Service Platform, and his take on Cisco's use of Linux as a basis for IOS-XE. The take-away quote from the IOS-XE post:

When Cisco (NSDQ: CSCO) and Juniper first said they were opening their router
OSes, I thought that they'd be about as open as the iPhone. With Cisco's launch of IOS XE, I realize I
was wrong: The iPhone is much more open.
This is worth watching.

virtualization.info: Cisco puts KVM in its IOS

And now Cisco includes it in the new IOS-XE, the Linux-powered operating system for its highest-end router: the ASR 1000.

The Aggregation Services Router (ASR) 1000 is the first Cisco router that replaces its traditional in-house developed IOS with Linux and targets service providers and biggest enterprises.
Among the exclusive features offered by this new equipment there is the operating system redundancy, achieved without any hardware module: a first in the networking industry.

How Cisco is able to provide a redundant IOS image? Through KVM virtual machines as Information Week reports.
At this point is still unknown which version of Linux kernel is used for IOS-XE and which version of KVM as well, but the company must be absolutely sure of its reliability to use it in such high-end product.

It's interesting that fact that Cisco chosen KVM for this task, while it's very busy with VMware, investing in VMW, occupying its keynotes, and maybe (it's still an unconfirmed news) releasing a software switch for ESX Server.

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