From the Canyon Edge -- :-Dustin

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

qemu-kvm-0.11~rc2 uploaded to Karmic

The upstream qemu and kvm projects have released the second release candidate of qemu-kvm-0.11, the stable series of the accelerated virtualization hypervisor for Linux.

I have merged and uploaded this package for Ubuntu Karmic. Please test on your systems, and file bugs with: ubuntu-bug qemu-kvm

Karmic is rapidly approaching Beta, RC, and GA status. Please help test kvm!



  1. Hi Dustin,

    Can you please explain how the new version numbers work? The latest release of KVM is 88, is that what this package contains? Where in the package is this information?


  2. FireRabbit-

    We're taking this straight from upstream.

    Here's a brief explanation...

    The QEMU project has long existed as an emulator. As such, it was pretty slow. kqemu made things a little quicker, but not much.

    A few years ago, KVM emerged as a viable hypervisor in the upstream Linux kernel, thought it requires CPU's with particular functionality (VT).

    KVM consists of two pieces... A kernel module, kvm, which provides /dev/kvm. And a userspace program, provided by QEMU, plus some additional functionality to leverage /dev/kvm.

    As such, QEMU was "enhanced" to take advantage of KVM's acceleration. This existed in Debian, Ubuntu, and other distributions as a "kvm" package, in addition to a "qemu" package.

    Basically, the KVM upstream project takes some QEMU release, and apply a bunch of patches to it, and then redistribute it as "kvm". These are the releases that you refer to, kvm-88.

    Hardy, for instanced, shipped with kvm-62, intrepid with kvm-72, and jaunty with kvm-84.

    However, the QEMU and KVM upstream projects are trying to merge. Basically, QEMU needs to absorb the huge stack of changes that KVM provides. This process is currently underway. Perhaps sometime next year, we might see a single userspace project.

    In the mean time, however, the KVM project decided to move to a dual release process, for the benefit of distributions like Fedora, RHEL, and Ubuntu.

    Upstream QEMU and KVM have committed to providing stable releases that will maintain "long term support", with bug fixes being maintained against these releases.

    This will happen against the qemu-kvm releases, but not the kvm-* releases. For this reason, as a distribution, Ubuntu has decided to package and ship qemu-kvm as our hypervisor for maintenance reasons. As I understand it, Fedora is doing basically the same thing.

    So, to finally answer your question, I'll break down the package name "qemu-kvm-0.11~rc2-Oubuntu2"....

    * the QEMU project released qemu-0.11-rc2, the 2nd release candidate of what will become the 0.11 release
    * the KVM project took qemu-0.11-rc2, and applied their KVM acceleration patches on top of that, and released qemu-kvm-0.11-rc2
    * we, Ubuntu, then took qemu-0.11-rc2 and applied our packaging, and a couple of minor changes and appended -0ubuntu2 on the end of that

    Does that help?



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