Unikernels: The Next Generation of Cloud Technology

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The Best Environment for Unikernels

Unikernels are poised to become the core of a new form of cloud computing, where a single hypervisor instance can support hundreds or even thousands of VMs. Network protection services, network routing, or software-defined networking are great places for unikernels. Early adopters are also using them to run websites, critical systems infrastructure, and cutting-edge research. One example is HaLVM, which provides a reliable, secure VPN solution for laptops or to implement a variety of network services, including encryption nodes, random number generators, and network sensors. Anyone needing a lightweight, single-service component that can be brought up and down quickly or massive scalability should consider this new technology.

Most technologists have heard about software containers (or simply "containers") – a technology that became popularized by Docker, which is an open platform for building, shipping and running distributed applications through containers. Containers use shared operating systems to create a capsule, of sorts, to contain your application.

They are increasingly popular, but are not the panacea able to solve all the new challenges cloud computing presents. Problems mainly pertaining to security tend to hinder this technology. However, a new technology on the rise — unikernels — holds great promise for the next generation of cloud infrastructure.

For this slideshow, the Xen Project provides background on what this new technology is, how it fits within the greater cloud infrastructure ecosystem, why it's well-suited to the future of cloud computing, how it compares with containers, and how to choose between the unikernels and containers to best support the needs of specific IT environments.

 

Related Topics : Cloud Computing, Dell, Services Vendors, SMBs, Web Platform Vendors

 
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