Managing Virtual Machines in the Cloud with the Open-Source libvirt API

This article explores one important area of virtualization: operating system-level virtualization. This variant allows for a complete operating system to be created inside a virtual machine (VM). The management of such VMs is an important problem that has not yet been solved in the general case. The article presents the open-source libvirt API to explore some of the Cloud management facilities available in this interesting software technology.

As cloud users consume cloud resources (such as, email, data storage, and computing facilities), the big challenge for providers are to deploy worthwhile end user services and to manage the underlying facilities and the services. This article presents the QEMU/KVM virtualization technology on Ubuntu. The libvirt technology is a great addition to the whole cloud/virtualization space because it allows for what is nearly a technology-agnostic software-rich approach to management and monitoring. libvirt allows you to write code that reaches inside the virtualization technology and interacts with the underlying resources. This is a big challenge for any API, and makes libvirt well worth a look.