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NetApp, Virtualization, and the OVA

Posted by ddale in Standards Watch on Sep 20, 2013 6:00:50 AM


This week, the Open Virtualization Alliance (OVA) announced that NetApp has joined their Governing Board – see press release here.


NetApp has been a member of the OVA, an industry consortium committed to fostering the adoption of Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) as an open virtualization alternative, since 2011.  Upgrading our participation in the OVA to governing member level marks an increase in our commitment to the KVM ecosystem.  This blog attempts to put that commitment into context.


NetApp recognised the importance of server virtualization environments more than 5 years ago. We also recognised that scalable virtualization solutions require considerations in the area of storage, and made investments in the close integration of the leading server virtualization solutions with NetApp storage.  This led to closer and more in-depth partnership activity with the vendors of those solutions – principally VMware and Microsoft.  In the case of open source virtualization solutions, integration means participating in the upstream code development communities, and working with the downstream open source distributors.


Consequently, we became an active participant in, an open source community focused on creating the software components required to support enterprise-class KVM-based virtualization. We have had a NetApp representative (Jon Benedict, aka Captain KVM) on the Governing Board for several years. We have also been working closely with Red Hat around their virtualization solutions.


As the virtualization market has expanded and matured we have increasingly encountered customers looking for an open source alternative for building cloud solutions. KVM solutions are becoming increasingly popular in these areas. For example, a recent survey of companies deploying OpenStack indicates that 71% favour KVM as their hypervisor of choice. So now is the right time for NetApp to join the OVA founding members (HP, Intel, IBM and Red Hat), and help drive adoption of KVM, grow the ecosystem of third-party solutions around KVM, and increase overall awareness and understanding of KVM.


NetApp’s commitment in OVA is reflected in the experience and seniority of our representatives in the organization.  Dimitrios Dovas, Senior Director Cloud Solutions, is NetApp’s representative on the OVA Board, and Denise Ridolfo, Manager Industry Association Marketing, will be our representative on the OVA marketing committee.


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