Hypervisors and Mobile Phones

by Jason Conger [Published on 15 Nov. 2008 / Last Updated on 15 Nov. 2008]


Hypervisor manufacturers are starting to team up with mobile phone manufacturers to put hypervisors on mobile phones. Earlier this year, virtualization.info reported that Xen is being ported to the ARM architecture by Samsung. VMware is also working in the arena as well with their acquisition of Trango. There is even a Wiki on the "XenARM" project. So, what is the motivation behind all this? There is a cool white paper put out by Samsung that explains some of the motivation as well as give a more in-depth architectural overview of the components. Some of the motivations are:

Many downloadable services under beyond 3G mobile environments will be increased.

This requires an open mobile platform.

Open platform will face problems with malware and bugs similar to PC.

Secure Xen can help an open mobile platform secure against malware.
However, bugs in device drivers may cause Dom 0 to stop working and the applications to have to restart.

Relatively short life cycle of peripheral chips in consumer electronics products.
Can test cases be updated quickly and be used to detect every bug during development ? Patch is likely.

Device driver domain to be separated from Dom 0 (security applications running on Dom 0 in secure Xen on ARM) kernel.


Technorati : Citrix, Hypervisor, Samsung, VDI, VMware, Xen Del.icio.us : Citrix, Hypervisor, Samsung, VDI, VMware, Xen Ice Rocket : Citrix, Hypervisor, Samsung, VDI, VMware, Xen

Hypervisor manufacturers are starting to team up with mobile phone manufacturers to put hypervisors on mobile phones. Earlier this year, virtualization.info reported that Xen is being ported to the ARM architecture by Samsung. VMware is also working in the arena as well with their acquisition of Trango. There is even a Wiki on the "XenARM" project. So, what is the motivation behind all this? There is a cool white paper put out by Samsung that explains some of the motivation as well as give a more in-depth architectural overview of the components. Some of the motivations are:


  • Many downloadable services under beyond 3G mobile environments will be increased.
    • This requires an open mobile platform.
  • Open platform will face problems with malware and bugs similar to PC.
    • Secure Xen can help an open mobile platform secure against malware.
    • However, bugs in device drivers may cause Dom 0 to stop working and the applications to have to restart.
      • Relatively short life cycle of peripheral chips in consumer electronics products.
      • Can test cases be updated quickly and be used to detect every bug during development ? Patch is likely.
  • Device driver domain to be separated from Dom 0 (security applications running on Dom 0 in secure Xen on ARM) kernel.

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