According to Tim Mueting, AMD virtualization solutions manager, the company is working with VMware Inc. to help the company take advantage of facilities within AMD's chips to mask differences between CPU generations, and therefore enable the safe live migration of VMs between servers running different AMD processors.Mueting said he expects the functionality to be available "within a year, but maybe even sooner than that," and will work with Opteron Rev E and Rev F, AMD's forthcoming quad-core "Barcelona" and beyond.
In a similar vein, Intel in June announced a new feature for its forthcoming Xeon processor, code-named Penryn. The feature, called FlexMigration, will enable live migration between different generations of Intel processors.
Intel and AMD's work won't fix VMotion's limitations per se -- it will merely lay the foundation for VMware and others to take advantage of capabilities within the chips to manage differences in instruction sets. Nor are there any efforts underway to enable live migration between Intel and AMD processors.
"Our goal is to create flexibility, based on what [the customers] purchase today, for future generations of Intel processors," said Jake Smith, part of Intel's Advanced Server Technologies team. "We do not do cross-company enablement."
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