Discussion at the Gartner Data Center Conference in Las Vegas this week is circling around a new operating system concept called metaOS, according to this report on eWEEK.
The idea is to place a new type of virtualization layer somewhere between the application layer and distributed computing resources to handle tasks like scheduling, loading and error handling across the distributed hardware set.
In a presentation given by Gartner's Thomas Bittman, the metaOS was described as the answer to real-time infrastructure needs, which can often require 10 times the performance of traditional operating systems.
The metaOS differs from a standard hypervisor in that it includes a "service governor" to govern the interaction between distributed resources at the service level. It essentially becomes an OS for the entire data center, rather than a single server.
Bittman said VMware and Microsoft are almost there with the ESX and Hyper-V platforms, serving as blueprints for a true metaOS within the next three to five years.