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Sunday, January 5, 2014

Nested virtualization support on Rackspace public cloud

We have found the CPU hardware architecture that the public cloud is running on in this blog: Hypervisor hardware differences on Openstack Rackspace Cloud.


Does Rackspace public cloud support nested visualization?

Results discussion
  • Public Cloud
Of course for the cloud to exists the physical sever where the hypervisor runs (Xen or KVM for example) needs to have in-hardware virtualization support (Intel VT-x or AMD-V). This is the only way to provide a high performance cloud servers.

But once the cloud server boots up the cloud virtual CPU no longer exports the hardware CPU virtualization capabilities. You can verify this with this little script below.

egrep -i 'vmx|svm|ept|vpid|npt|tpr_shadow|flexpriority|vnmi'

That means you can't use your cloud server to run another, a guest hypervisor ( called as well nested hypervisor).
  • Private cloud 
The nested virtualization can be enabled. As an example this link describe some of the steps for Linux KVM:
Another solution

If your cloud server doesn't offer nested virtualization support you can always use the emulation mode. Qemu supports running VM that way.


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