NSDI '04 Abstract
Pp. 169182 of the Proceedings
Constructing Services with Interposable Virtual Hardware
Andrew Whitaker, Richard S. Cox, Marianne Shaw, and Steven D. Gribble, University of Washington
Virtual machine monitors (VMMs) have enjoyed a resurgence in
popularity, since VMMs can help to solve difficult systems problems
like migration, fault tolerance, code sandboxing, intrusion
detection, and debugging. Recently, several researchers have
proposed novel applications of virtual machine technology, such as
Internet Suspend/Resume and transparent
OS-level rollback and replay. Unfortunately, current
VMMs do not export enough functionality to budding developers of
such applications, forcing them either to reverse engineer pieces of
a black-box VMM, or to reimplement significant portions of a VMM.
In this paper, we present the design, implementation, and evaluation
of µDenali, an extensible and programmable virtual machine
monitor that has the ability to run modern operating systems.
µDenali allows programmers to extend the virtual architecture
exposed by the VMM to a virtual machine, in effect giving systems
programmers the ability to dynamically assemble a virtual machine
out of either default or custom-built virtual hardware elements.
µDenali allows programmers to interpose on and modify events at
the level of the virtual architecture, enabling them to easily
perform tasks such as manipulating disk and network events, or
capturing and migrating virtual machine state. In addition to
describing and evaluating our extensible virtual machine monitor, we
present an application-level API that simplifies writing extensions,
and we discuss applications of virtual machines that we have built
using this API.
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