[Kata-hypervisor] kata requirements for image formats and devices

Allison Randal allison at lohutok.net
Wed Jun 6 15:17:19 UTC 2018

I wasn't at the session where this started (because I was speaking on a 
panel at the same time about edge computing, containers/VMs, and hybrid 
approaches), but several people pointed me at this list, because I'm 
currently working on a lightweight hypervisor written in Rust (on top of 
KVM), as PhD research at the University of Cambridge.

I'm interested in getting more details on what features of QEMU are used 
by Kata Containers. Specifically, what image formats and devices do you 
need? This information would be equally valuable to a stripped-down 
QEMU, so it wouldn't be a distraction from that work, just a side 
benefit of informing other approaches to lightweight hypervisors.

The fundamental concept of my work is building a "library hypervisor", 
somewhat analogous to the way unikernels are a "library operating 
system". So, instead of a monolithic body of code, it is a collection of 
Rust libraries that provide devices, support for various image formats, 
an interface to KVM, etc. A final compiled hypervisor imports a minimal 
set of libraries to get the minimal set of features that it needs.

I had considered Kata Containers as a possible example target, though I 
was prioritizing it behind libvirt, minikube, LinuxKit, and a few other 
potential targets. I wouldn't mind bumping Kata Containers up to a 
higher priority, if people here would be interested in a prototype to try.


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