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14 October 2011, 11:41

Univention signs Xen Windows driver

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A specialist in open source solutions, Germany's Univention has provided a signature for Xen Windows drivers licensed under the GPL. The signature now makes it possible for the first time to easily use drivers in 64-bit Windows systems. Until now, more modern 64-bit Windows versions had to be put into a special test mode in order to use the driver developed by James Harper. Comparable signed drivers for Xen are also available from Citrix, although the firm has never officially approved their use in the community version of the hypervisor.

The now signed GPLPV drivers can be installed, or upgraded, in a Windows VM under Xen. The drivers establish a new interface for network and hard drive access for communication with the hypervisor, making communication much faster than with active emulation of the devices. Called paravirtualisation, this aspect is a speciality of Xen. These days, however, paravirtualisation is also common with KVM, Red Hat also provides signed drivers, and even Microsoft uses a similar technology with Hyper-V for Windows.


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