Oracle VM enables data centers to run multiple virtual machines on a single piece of hardware. The bare-metal hardware runs software that enables you to install multiple instances of operating systems that are able to run simultaneously and independently, in their own secure environment, with minimal reduction in performance. Each virtual machine has its own virtual CPU, network interfaces, storage, and operating system. The Oracle VM Server platform is built upon an updated version of the underlying Xen™ hypervisor technology. Dell™ PowerEdge™ servers and storage systems are ideal choices for deploying highly reliable virtualization solutions including Oracle VM.


Oracle VM 2.2 - Features and Updates


With the release of Oracle VM 2.2 during Oracle World 2009, Oracle has released its latest Xen hypervisor, which adds new functionalities and enhanced performance. Below is a list of what is new with Oracle VM 2.2:

  • Updated Xen 3.4 Hypervisor—improved power management features, enhanced security, performance, better support for new hardware
  • Updated Dom0 Linux Kernel with Newer Drivers—better hardware support for higher performance, supports new Intel Xeon 5500 series (Nehalem) & AMD Six-Core Opteron™-based processors
  • Updated OCFS2 1.4 Cluster File System—sparse file support in OCFS2 1.4 that enables users more control over data allocation and improves virtual machine provisioning and cloning
  • Importing Block Devices as Shared Virtual Disks—block devices can be assigned to virtual machines via the Oracle VM Manager 2.2 (feature not available in previous versions; had to be manually done)
  • Virtual CPU Scheduling Priorities and Caps per VM—control access to CPU utilization between multiple VMs
  • Server Pool Master Auto-failover—previous releases lost High Availability if the Server Master node failed; the new OVM 2.2 uses a virtual IP (VIP) to ensure that HA is always available across all your OVM nodes
  • Virtual Machine Tree View—new view added to OVM 2.2 Manager for better management
  • Changing the Group to which a Virtual Machine belongs—saves time and space and improves ease of use
  • Improved Repository and Cluster Configuration—provide new configuration script (repos.py) to streamline the repository and cluster setup, reducing setup complexity
  • Placing a Server in Maintenance Mode—allows a particular server to be maintenance and prevents it from hosting any VMs while in this mode
  • Improved Logging—enables easier audit support and troubleshooting of Oracle VM Manager operations
  • Importing VHD Disk Images—import VHD disk images from Virtual iron, VMware, Citrix, Microsoft to Oracle VM for easy migration
  • dm-nfs Enhancement—"dm-nfs" uses asynchronous and direct I/O for better performance
  • Secure VNC Access—improved security and authentication communication with a guest's VNC console

Installation and Configuration

There are a few great documents for deployment of Oracle VM with Dell solutions:

Building an Oracle Grid with Oracle VM on Dell Blade Servers and Dell EqualLogic iSCSI Storage Whitepaper

Best Practices of Running Oracle RAC 11g with EqualLogic on Oracle VM Whitepaper

Deploying Oracle VM on PowerEdge Servers & Dell/EMC Storage Whitepaper

Also, Dell has an extensive write-up on managing Dell systems within Oracle Grid Control:

Monitoring Dell PowerEdge Servers with Oracle Enterprise Manager 10g Grid Control
Monitoring Dell 9G Servers in Oracle GRID

Dell OpenManage Agent Installation on Oracle VM Server

Disclaimer: Officially, Oracle VM Server isn't on the supported list for the Dell OpenManage agent, however, in our experience, it works. Here's what I did to get it working:

1. Download the latest Redhat version for your server from support.dell.com.
2. sftp the file to the Oracle VM Server and extract the files.
3. The installation will check the /etcl/redhat-release file for a supported OS version. Before you modify the file I recommend you make a backup copy first:
cp redhat-release redhat-release.orig
4. I edited the /etc/redhat-release to reflect a supported OMSA distro and replaced the contents with:
Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server release 5 (Tikanga)
5. Begin the install by running Setup.sh:
./Setup.sh
6. Once complete run:
srvadmin-services.sh start
7. Open the firewall by running:
system-config-securitylevel
Select 'Customize'
Then append "1311:tcp" to the allow incoming/other ports , select OK/OK to exit.
8. Open browswer to (Oracle VM Server IP Address):1311
9. Login with root account and its password.

DellTechCenter Oracle VM Interface Demonstrations


YouTube video of connecting manager to server: