For today’s post, I thought I’d survey what software projects related to virtualization name themselves.
It turns out that most projects have cute, but relatively unoriginal, names, formed by finding a word with “vert” and changing it to “virt”.
To collect today’s list, I started with sed -ne 's/vert/virt/p' /usr/share/dict/words. That gives me 433 words.
To pare down the list a bit, I used Google’s web search API to ignore words that had no Google results. That got the list down to 125 words.
Finally, I filtered the list down to things that I actually thought were reasonable project names (for instance, “advirt” might be a reasonable project; “incontrovirtible” and “ovirtalkative”, not so much). This admittedly subjective sampling got me down to 27 words that seemed worth exploring further.
And so, without further ado, here is a sample of names for today’s
- ConVirt: ConVirt has seen a lot of evolution. It was originally a Linux desktop graphical Xen management application, a la virt-manager, and was originally called XenMan (you can still see some evidence of this at their old website. Since then, it’s been renamed to ConVirt, enhanced to support KVM (using libvirt), and moved into a rich web application. It’s still available under the GPL, but Convirture, the company supporting ConVirt development, is selling some advanced features along with their paid support.
- Divirt: Divirt is a project to create virtual networks, allowing geographically disparate virtual machines to act as if they’re all connected by a LAN. Doesn’t really look like it ever got off the ground, though.
- ExtraVirt: ExtraVirt was a project from UMich to detect processor errors by running the same system synchronously in multiple VMs, regulating non-deterministic inputs, and comparing the output. All I can find is a single two-page brief on the project.
- IntroVirt: Another project from the same group at UMich, IntroVirt was a system for both active intrusion detection and post-facto intrusion analysis. It used a bunch of tests from the host to monitor suspicious activity.
- Invirt: The super awesome project from the MIT SIPB. Invirt is a full-stack, multi-host, Xen-based management platform targeted at semi-public deployments with a web-based control interface. It has per-machine access control and quotas, and supports creation, deletion, installation, and general administration through the web interface, including an autoinstaller for Debian and Ubuntu. The primary deployment of Invirt, the XVM service, provides free VMs for the MIT community. XVM is currently running 246 separate VMs on 4 physical servers.
- oVirt: Similar to ConVirt (at least in its current form), oVirt is a RedHat-sponsored web-based virtualization management platform. In contrast to something like Invirt that’s designed for building a “public cloud”, oVirt is designed for building more of a “private cloud”, where all of the VMs are managed by the same person. oVirt was one of the first projects to heavily utilize libvirt, and both projects come from the same group in RedHat.
- ReVirt: From the group that brought you ExtraVirt and IntroVirt, ReVirt is a trustworthy execution logger. It logs a VM’s execution for later replay. Like IntroVirt, it seems to be primarily designed for intrusion detection and analysis.
- SubVirt: Yet another paper from UMich, this paper was somewhat groundbreaking research into malicious virtualization technology. The SubVirt project developed proof-of-concept “VMBRs” (virtual-machine based rootkits), which installed themselves as a hypervisor on machines, transparently turning the OS previously running on bare metal into a virtual machine.
- TransVirtual Systems: These guys sell a compatibility layer that lets you run ancient software from Wang VS on a modern UNIX platform.
- Xilinx Virtex: While not virtualizing the same layer as the other projects and products here, FPGA’s are basically virtualization for silicon, letting you literally create new digital logic on the fly, and Xilinx’s Virtex series of FPGAs is the top-of-the-line.
- Virtigo: I’m sort of cheating here, because Google won’t help you find this one. When I left my internship at Google, I decided to pull the virtualization testing framework I was working on out from the larger body of work it was originally included in, and Virtigo is what I decided to call it. If I ever have the time to pull the project back together, it’ll live at virtigo.org.
In addition to those names, though, there are actually some names that haven’t yet been taken:
So – what are you going to name your next virtualization-related project or product?