KVM is the #4 ranked solution in best Server Virtualization Software
. PeerSpot users give KVM an average rating of 7.8 out of 10. KVM is most commonly compared to Proxmox VE:
KVM vs Proxmox VE
. KVM is popular among the large enterprise segment,
accounting for 57% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a
computer software company, accounting for 19% of all views.
Download the Server Virtualization Software Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: February 2023
What is KVM?
KVM stands for Kernel-based Virtual Machine, which is an open-source virtualization technology that is embedded in Linux. KVM allows users to seamlessly transform their Linux system into a hypervisor that, in turn, will enable a host machine to run numerous, isolated virtual environments or virtual machines (VMs).
KVM is part of Linux. Users with Linux 2.6.20 or newer already have KVM. As KVM is already a component of the current Linux code, it automatically improves with every new Linux fix, feature, or upgrade. So KVM users are always current and up to date.
KVM automatically transforms Linux to a type -1 (bare-metal) hypervisor. All hypervisors need operating system components, such as a process scheduler, I/O stack, device drivers, memory manager, and more, to run a VM. KVM already has these components embedded, as it is part of the Linux kernel. Each VM is generated as a basic Linux proces,s which is maintained by the standard Linux scheduler, with dedicated hardware such as a graphics adapter, memory, disks, network card, and CPUs.
KVM Key Features:
KVM has many valuable key features. Some of its most useful features include:
Storage: KVM has the ability to use any storage protocol supported by Linux, including network-attached storage (NAS) and some local disks. Multipath I/O can be utilized to provide redundancy and improve storage. Disk images use thin provisioning, ensuring storage is used on demand. KVM is also able to use shared file systems, enabling VM images to be shared on multiple hosts.
Hardware: KVM is able to use a vast number of Linux-certified supported hardware platforms. As hardware vendors routinely contribute to kernel improvement, the most up-to-date hardware features are generally quickly added to the Linux kernel.
Memory: KVM effectively utilizes the memory management features of Linux, such as kernel same-page emerging and non-uniform memory access. The memory of a VM can easily be switched, supported by large volumes for improved performance, then backed by a disk file or shared.
Migration: KVM actively supports live migration so users have the ability to move any running VM between physical hosts with no downtime.
Security: KVM uses a blend of secure virtualization (SVirt) and security-enhanced Linux (SELinux) for improved VM security and isolation. SELinux determines security boundaries surrounding VMs. sVirt expands SELinux’s processes, permitting Mandatory Access Control (MAC) security to be used for guest VMs and preventing any manual labeling issues.
Reviews from Real Users
“The most helpful aspect of KVM is the fact that the interface is so minimal. It includes just what you need to set up the VMs and manage them, and it's very simple to do so. KVM, as a native virtualization solution, is a complete and fully adequate system for small businesses that need to reduce costs, and also to make maintenance easier. “ - Georges E., Business Engineer and Consultant at All-Tech
“The most valuable feature of KVM is the hypervisor environment and how we can configure it with ease. Additionally, the interface is intuitive.” Sonu S., Senior Solution Architect at Micro Focus
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