Re: Providing official virtualisation images of Debian
On Tue, 2011-07-26 at 11:05 +0200, Philipp Hagemeister wrote:
> Jon Dowland wrote:
> > The VM definition file is trickier. qemu/kvm essentially don't have
> one; you
> > would supply command-line arguments to the tool.
> virsh/libvirt/virt-manager et
> > al sitting on top of KVM have an XML definition. VMWare uses an XML
> > I suspect VirtualBox does as well.
> OVF is open, well-supported (including VirtualBox and VMWare), and imho
> not a bad format.
> I'd suggest we add support for OVF for the virtualization solutions that
> don't support it instead of inventing a new format or writing obscure
> metadata files for each virtualization solution(virtualizer?).
Speaking to a few folks at work who have experience of producing
appliances etc they recommended OVF too.
They say that the OVF format is "icky" but at the end of the day it is
One specific advantage is that it allows the use of a sparse format such
as VMDK or VHD, which apparently do offer image size savings over
compressing a sparse raw image.
Virtual Box have an tool (vbox-img, GPL) which can create these formats
and is apparently quite good. The Xen project also has OSS code (libvhd,
part of the blktap infrastructure) which can write vhd files.
OVF is supported by XenServer/XCP, Virtual Box and VMware. It appears to
be supported by OpenStack as well. I don't think it would be too hard to
add support to other virtualisation tools, either directly or via a
conversion step, since most of the moving parts already exist. I'd
certainly be up for taking care of this for Xen toolstacks other than
xapi (primarily the xl toolstack).
Conversion to AMI would be useful (and seems fairly straight forward)
but it's not clear that the tools referenced from  (which are those
at ) that the relevant tools are Free ( helpfully says "License:
other"), they don't appear to be in Debian in any case.
Intelligence of mankind decreasing.
Details at ... uh, when the little hand is on the ....