Red Hat deepens Ansible, hybrid cloud support in latest release of virtualization platform

Matrix networking virtualization

Red Hat Inc. announced availability of Red Hat Virtualization 4.1, the latest release of the company’s virtualization platform based on the kernel-based virtual machine KVM open-source standard.

The software provides for centralized management of virtualized servers and workstations based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux with automation capabilities provided by Red Hat’s version of the Ansible configuration management, application deployment and task automation platform.

Positioned as a direct competitor to VMware Inc.’s proprietary virtualization platform, Red Hat’s offering is based upon open-source alternatives like Simple Protocol for Independent Computing Environments, or Spice, and Virtual Desktop and Server Manager. Red Hat said its approach provides an open path to application virtualization, which helps information technology organizations consolidate resources such as servers and storage and allocate them more flexibly. It also creates a foundation for private cloud and container-based workloads.

The new release deepens integration with Red Hat’s hybrid cloud technologies, which include Red Hat CloudForms and Ansible by Red Hat. Ansible integration enables a single management interface across a broad set of data center infrastructure elements, with automation of role-based administration and operational tasks. Improved integration with Red Hat OpenStack helps customers more easily move between traditional and cloud infrastructure. Integration with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.3 improves support for Windows-based workloads and unplugging of live central processing unitss.

The new release makes it possible for users to automate the hypervisor using a variety of Ansible 2.3 modules that enhance virtual machines, storage, network and other elements. Virtual machines can now be restarted even when power management fencing is not enabled or available, a feature that Red Hat said is key for multisite clusters.

The Storage Pool Manager now enables storage operations to be delegated other data center hosts and run in parallel for higher throughput. Advanced single storage performance and improved block storage management enable administrators to remove snapshots faster when a virtual machine is not in use and help reclaim storage space from within the virtual machine, respectively.

The new release also includes a tech preview of Open Virtual Network for Open vSwitch, a software-defined networking protocol that makes it possible to isolate overlay networking and subnet management in Red Hat Virtualization 4.1 and exposes an OpenStack Networking (Neutron)-compatible application program interface for elements that use Neutron network-as-a-service automation.

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