Files can be segmented into distinct groups and allocated storage units such as blocks. Files associated with parent and child files can be segmented into separate groups, for instance. Further, a group associated with parent files can be extended to include additional blocks reserved for subsequent update. Additionally, metadata can be merged across groups to provide a unified view of the distinct groups.
- 1-20. -20. (canceled)
- 21. A method, comprising:
employing at least one processor configured to execute computer-executable instructions stored in memory to perform the following operations; identifying a first set of one or more storage blocks to be allocated for storage of a master-image virtual hard disk; extending the first set of one or more storage blocks by one or more additional storage blocks reserved for patches to the master-image virtual hard disk different from updates to the master-image virtual hard disk that are represented by one or more differencing virtual hard disks, wherein the one or more differencing virtual hard disks are dependent on the master-image virtual hard disk; allocating space for the extended first set of storage blocks for the master-image virtual hard disk and for the patches to the master-image virtual hard disk; allocating additional space for a second set of storage blocks for the one or more differencing virtual hard disks; and merging local metadata associated with the master-image virtual hard disk with local metadata associated with the one or more differencing virtual hard disks.
- View Dependent Claims (22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27)
- 28. A computing device, comprising:
a memory and a processor, wherein the memory and the processor are respectively configured to store and execute computer-executable instructions to cause the computing device to; identify a first set of storage blocks to be allocated for a master-image virtual hard disk; extend the first set of storage blocks by one or more additional storage blocks for patches to the master-image virtual hard disk; allocate a first space range in a file system for the extended first set of storage blocks for the master-image virtual hard disk, and for the patches to the master-image virtual hard disk, wherein the one or more patches are different than updates captured by one or more differencing virtual hard disks; and allocate an additional space range in the file system for a second set of storage blocks for the one or more differencing virtual hard disks, wherein the one or more differencing virtual hard disks are dependent on the master-image virtual hard disk; and merge metadata across the storage blocks for the master-image virtual hard disk and the one or more differencing virtual hard disks.
- View Dependent Claims (29, 30, 31, 32, 33)
- 34. A computer-readable storage medium having instructions stored thereon that enable at least one processor to perform a method upon execution, the method comprising:
identifying a set of storage blocks for allocation for a master-image virtual hard disk; extending the set of storage blocks for allocation to the master-image virtual hard disk by one or more additional blocks for storage of updates to the master-image virtual hard disk; allocating a first location, in a file system for the extended set of storage blocks for the master image virtual hard disk and for updates to the master-image virtual hard disk, wherein the updates to the master-image virtual hard disk are not included in one or more differencing virtual hard disks; allocating a second location for additional storage blocks for the one or more differencing virtual hard disks, wherein the one or more differencing virtual hard disks are dependent on the master-image virtual hard disk; and merging metadata across the master-image virtual hard disk and the one or more differencing virtual hard disks.
- View Dependent Claims (35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40)
This application is a continuation of U.S. patent application Ser. No. 13/048,299, filed Mar. 15, 2011, entitled “EXTENT VIRTUALIZATION” (Atty. Dkt. No. 331691-US-NP). The entirety of this afore-mentioned application is incorporated herein by reference.
Virtual machine technology facilitates increased physical resource utilization as well as agile machine provisioning. Traditionally, software applications are tightly coupled to physical servers on which they run. Virtual machine technology provides a layer of abstraction between the software applications as well as physical hardware and enables provisioning of multiple virtual machines on a single physical server, for example. As a result, workloads can be consolidated to improve physical asset utilization, and machines can be rapidly deployed and decommissioned, as needed.
A virtual machine is a piece of software that emulates a physical computer utilizing a virtual hard disk (VHD), among other things. A VHD is a physical hard disk analogue for a virtual machine. Accordingly, the VHD can include like representations for data and structural elements, such as files and folders. An operating system (OS) (a.k.a. guest operating system) can be installed on the VHD. Further, one or more applications can be installed on the VHD, and the OS can support execution of the one or more applications with respect to the virtual machine.
A VHD can be formatted in one of three distinct manners, namely fixed, dynamic, or differencing. A fixed VHD utilizes a file that is allocated to the size of the virtual hard disk when it was created. A dynamic VHD employs a file that at any given time is large enough to support data written to it plus associated metadata. Accordingly, the VHD file starts small and grows as new blocks are in the disk are used up to the size of the VHD when created. A differencing VHD is a file that represents current state of a virtual disk as a set of modified blocks storing differences in comparison to a parent VHD. A differencing VHD is not an independent disk but rather is linked to another fixed, dynamic, or differencing VHD. Furthermore, a differencing VHD can be utilized in conjunction with a master image.
A master image (a.k.a., golden image) is a virtual machine template that facilitates mass deployment of virtual machines. A virtual machine template is a copy of a VHD that can include an installed operating system, applications, and configurations, among other things. The master image is a useful tool for system administrators, because they do not need to construct a virtual machine from scratch but rather can simply utilize the master image to create a cloned virtual machine. Customizations including additional applications or updates to applications are implemented utilizing a differencing VHD that is linked to a master image VHD. In this manner, the master image remains unchanged while the virtual machine constructed from the master image is modifiable.
The following presents a simplified summary in order to provide a basic understanding of some aspects of the disclosed subject matter. This summary is not an extensive overview. It is not intended to identify key/critical elements or to delineate the scope of the claimed subject matter. Its sole purpose is to present some concepts in a simplified form as a prelude to the more detailed description that is presented later.
Briefly described, the subject disclosure generally pertains to extent virtualization. Files can be segregated into groups as a function of a relationship such as a parent-child relationship. In accordance with one embodiment, the files can correspond to a master-image VHD and one or more dependent differencing VHDs. Further, the space allocated to a parent group, such as a master-image VHD, is extended to include additional reserved space for updates to the parent group. Furthermore, this extended space, or extent, can be virtualized by introducing an additional level of abstraction or indirection. Still, further yet, metadata corresponding to each group can be merged together to present a unified view of the metadata across groups.
To the accomplishment of the foregoing and related ends, certain illustrative aspects of the claimed subject matter are described herein in connection with the following description and the annexed drawings. These aspects are indicative of various ways in which the subject matter may be practiced, all of which are intended to be within the scope of the claimed subject matter. Other advantages and novel features may become apparent from the following detailed description when considered in conjunction with the drawings.
Utilizing a master image virtual hard disk (VHD) in combination with one or more differencing VHDs provides many benefits including facilitating generation and deployment of a multitude of virtual machines. Furthermore, a virtual machine can be augmented to include new or different functionality utilizing a differencing VHD. However, a problem exists when one desires to update a master-image VHD, for example to apply a number of software patches and/or service packets. In particular, one of two different outcomes can occur. In one instance, updating the master image overwrites and generates stray differencing VHDs. Alternatively, the master image VHD will not be updated so as avoid the above issues. More specifically, a space allocation collision can occur with respect to existing differencing VHDs and an updated master-image VHD.
Details below are generally directed toward extent virtualization. Files can be segmented into different groups and allocated space based on a group. For instance, parent and child files (e.g., master and differencing VHDs) can be segmented into groups of blocks. Moreover, the group of blocks associated with the parent file (e.g., master-image VHD) can be extended to include additional blocks reserved for subsequent updates. The extended portion, or extent, can furthermore be introduced virtually rather than actually, for example by introducing an extra layer of abstraction or indirection. Furthermore, to facilitate a uniform view, metadata across the groups can be merged.
In accordance with one particular implementation, modifications can be made to a file system(s) (e.g., stored in a VHD(s)) to enable updating of a parent VHD without invalidating dependent differencing VHDs. In other words, a file system can be generated that is differencing aware.
Various aspects of the subject disclosure are now described in more detail with reference to the annexed drawings, wherein like numerals refer to like or corresponding elements throughout. It should be understood, however, that the drawings and detailed description relating thereto are not intended to limit the claimed subject matter to the particular form disclosed. Rather, the intention is to cover all modifications, equivalents, and alternatives falling within the spirit and scope of the claimed subject matter.
Referring initially to
The space allocation component 120 is configured to allocate space for one or more file groups produced by the segregation component 110. More specifically, the space allocation component 120 can identify, or cause to be identified, one or more units of storage, such as blocks (e.g., sequences of bits housing all or part of a file), to store the file groups. Accordingly, each file group can be afforded a group of blocks. Furthermore, the space allocation component 120 can extend the space afforded to one or more groups. For instance, a group associated with parent files can be extended to include additional blocks (an extent) to support subsequent updates, for instance, with respect to fixing, modifying or enhancing functionality provided thereby. By way of example, an update can correspond to a patch or service pack comprised of a plurality of patches. Overall, the space allocation component 120 is configured to allocate, or cause to be allocated, blocks in such a manner to avoid collisions. The number of additional reserved blocks can vary and be determined or otherwise inferred based on historical context information, for example, to ensure collisions are avoided without wasting space.
Turning first to
Such a scheme provides many benefits including facilitating generation and deployment of a multitude of virtual machines while also allowing a virtual machine to be augmented to include new or different functionality utilizing a differencing image. However, a problem exists when one desires to updated a master image 210 for example to apply a number of software patches and/or service packets (e.g., fix a security vulnerability). As shown, an update 230 to the master image 210 will be injected following the last block of the master image 210, which is occupied by the first block of the differencing image 220. In other words, a space allocation collision occurs. The collision occurs because the master image 210 is updated as the entire contents of the file system, in ignorance of the fact that in another virtual machine the file system includes the master image 210 and the differencing image 220. Consequently, the blocks allocated in the differencing image 220 can be overwritten by blocks allocated in the master image 210, which can result in stray differencing images, among other things. Alternatively, the updated may not be made to avoid overwriting the differencing image 220.
Turning attention to
Integration of the extent virtualization system 100 provides a layer of abstraction, or indirection, on top of a conventional file system that, among other things, groups files and allocates space for the groups of files in a particular manner. Accordingly, extents are virtualized as opposed to actualized. Similar to other virtualization technologies (e.g., virtual applications, virtual machines . . . ), here the file system can be fooled into providing additional space for a parent group. For example, the space allocation component 120 can record a larger size for the master image group than is actually needed to accommodate additional space for updates.
Note that a file system can natively support extents (e.g., extent-based file system) where an additional area of contiguous or non-contiguous space is allocated for a file. Here, however, virtual extents are created which may or may not be implemented utilizing actual file system extents. In fact, it is possible for virtual extents and actual extents to coexist. What'"'"'s more, such virtual extents are created with respect to particular groups of files.
The aforementioned systems, architectures, environments, and the like have been described with respect to interaction between several components. It should be appreciated that such systems and components can include those components or sub-components specified therein, some of the specified components or sub-components, and/or additional components. Sub-components could also be implemented as components communicatively coupled to other components rather than included within parent components. Further yet, one or more components and/or sub-components may be combined into a single component to provide aggregate functionality. Communication between systems, components and/or sub-components can be accomplished in accordance with either a push and/or pull model. The components may also interact with one or more other components not specifically described herein for the sake of brevity, but known by those of skill in the art.
Furthermore, various portions of the disclosed systems above and methods below can include or consist of artificial intelligence, machine learning, or knowledge or rule-based components, sub-components, processes, means, methodologies, or mechanisms (e.g., support vector machines, neural networks, expert systems, Bayesian belief networks, fuzzy logic, data fusion engines, classifiers . . . ). Such components, inter alia, can automate certain mechanisms or processes performed thereby to make portions of the systems and methods more adaptive as well as efficient and intelligent. By way of example and not limitation, the space allocation component 120 can include such mechanism to determine or infer an extent to which a group is to be extended to support subsequent updates while also preserving space, for instance.
In view of the exemplary systems described supra, methodologies that may be implemented in accordance with the disclosed subject matter will be better appreciated with reference to the flow charts of
It should be appreciated that aspects of the disclosed subject matter can be applied with respect to a legacy scheme. By way of example, and not limitation, a master-image VHD and one or more differencing VHDs can be acquired, wherein the master-image VHD is contiguous with the one or more differencing VHDs and un-extended. Extent virtualization can then be applied to this legacy representation.
As used herein, the terms “component” and “system,” as well as forms thereof are intended to refer to a computer-related entity, either hardware, a combination of hardware and software, software, or software in execution. For example, a component may be, but is not limited to being, a process running on a processor, a processor, an object, an instance, an executable, a thread of execution, a program, and/or a computer. By way of illustration, both an application running on a computer and the computer can be a component. One or more components may reside within a process and/or thread of execution and a component may be localized on one computer and/or distributed between two or more computers.
The word “exemplary” or various forms thereof are used herein to mean serving as an example, instance, or illustration. Any aspect or design described herein as “exemplary” is not necessarily to be construed as preferred or advantageous over other aspects or designs. Furthermore, examples are provided solely for purposes of clarity and understanding and are not meant to limit or restrict the claimed subject matter or relevant portions of this disclosure in any manner. It is to be appreciated a myriad of additional or alternate examples of varying scope could have been presented, but have been omitted for purposes of brevity.
As used herein, the term “inference” or “infer” refers generally to the process of reasoning about or inferring states of the system, environment, and/or user from a set of observations as captured via events and/or data. Inference can be employed to identify a specific context or action, or can generate a probability distribution over states, for example. The inference can be probabilistic—that is, the computation of a probability distribution over states of interest based on a consideration of data and events. Inference can also refer to techniques employed for composing higher-level events from a set of events and/or data. Such inference results in the construction of new events or actions from a set of observed events and/or stored event data, whether or not the events are correlated in close temporal proximity, and whether the events and data come from one or several event and data sources. Various classification schemes and/or systems (e.g., support vector machines, neural networks, expert systems, Bayesian belief networks, fuzzy logic, data fusion engines . . . ) can be employed in connection with performing automatic and/or inferred action in connection with the claimed subject matter.
Furthermore, to the extent that the terms “includes,” “contains,” “has,” “having” or variations in form thereof are used in either the detailed description or the claims, such terms are intended to be inclusive in a manner similar to the term “comprising” as “comprising” is interpreted when employed as a transitional word in a claim.
In order to provide a context for the claimed subject matter,
While the above disclosed system and methods can be described in the general context of computer-executable instructions of a program that runs on one or more computers, those skilled in the art will recognize that aspects can also be implemented in combination with other program modules or the like. Generally, program modules include routines, programs, components, data structures, among other things that perform particular tasks and/or implement particular abstract data types. Moreover, those skilled in the art will appreciate that the above systems and methods can be practiced with various computer system configurations, including single-processor, multi-processor or multi-core processor computer systems, mini-computing devices, mainframe computers, as well as personal computers, hand-held computing devices (e.g., personal digital assistant (PDA), phone, watch . . . ), microprocessor-based or programmable consumer or industrial electronics, and the like. Aspects can also be practiced in distributed computing environments where tasks are performed by remote processing devices that are linked through a communications network. However, some, if not all aspects of the claimed subject matter can be practiced on stand-alone computers. In a distributed computing environment, program modules may be located in one or both of local and remote memory storage devices.
With reference to
The processor(s) 720 can be implemented with a general purpose processor, a digital signal processor (DSP), an application specific integrated circuit (ASIC), a field programmable gate array (FPGA) or other programmable logic device, discrete gate or transistor logic, discrete hardware components, or any combination thereof designed to perform the functions described herein. A general-purpose processor may be a microprocessor, but in the alternative, the processor may be any processor, controller, microcontroller, or state machine. The processor(s) 720 may also be implemented as a combination of computing devices, for example a combination of a DSP and a microprocessor, a plurality of microprocessors, multi-core processors, one or more microprocessors in conjunction with a DSP core, or any other such configuration.
The computer 710 can include or otherwise interact with a variety of computer-readable media to facilitate control of the computer 710 to implement one or more aspects of the claimed subject matter. The computer-readable media can be any available media that can be accessed by the computer 710 and includes volatile and nonvolatile media, and removable and non-removable media. By way of example, and not limitation, computer-readable media may comprise computer storage media and communication media.
Computer storage media includes volatile and nonvolatile, removable and non-removable media implemented in any method or technology for storage of information such as computer-readable instructions, data structures, program modules, or other data. Computer storage media includes, but is not limited to memory devices (e.g., random access memory (RAM), read-only memory (ROM), electrically erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM) . . . ), magnetic storage devices (e.g., hard disk, floppy disk, cassettes, tape . . . ), optical disks (e.g., compact disk (CD), digital versatile disk (DVD) . . . ), and solid state devices (e.g., solid state drive (SSD), flash memory drive (e.g., card, stick, key drive . . . ) . . . ), or any other medium which can be used to store the desired information and which can be accessed by the computer 710.
Communication media typically embodies computer-readable instructions, data structures, program modules, or other data in a modulated data signal such as a carrier wave or other transport mechanism and includes any information delivery media. The term “modulated data signal” means a signal that has one or more of its characteristics set or changed in such a manner as to encode information in the signal. By way of example, and not limitation, communication media includes wired media such as a wired network or direct-wired connection, and wireless media such as acoustic, RF, infrared and other wireless media. Combinations of any of the above should also be included within the scope of computer-readable media.
Memory 730 and mass storage 750 are examples of computer-readable storage media. Depending on the exact configuration and type of computing device, memory 730 may be volatile (e.g., RAM), non-volatile (e.g., ROM, flash memory . . . ) or some combination of the two. By way of example, the basic input/output system (BIOS), including basic routines to transfer information between elements within the computer 710, such as during start-up, can be stored in nonvolatile memory, while volatile memory can act as external cache memory to facilitate processing by the processor(s) 720, among other things.
Mass storage 750 includes removable/non-removable, volatile/non-volatile computer storage media for storage of large amounts of data relative to the memory 730. For example, mass storage 750 includes, but is not limited to, one or more devices such as a magnetic or optical disk drive, floppy disk drive, flash memory, solid-state drive, or memory stick.
Memory 730 and mass storage 750 can include, or have stored therein, operating system 760, one or more applications 762, one or more program modules 764, and data 766. The operating system 760 acts to control and allocate resources of the computer 710. Applications 762 include one or both of system and application software and can exploit management of resources by the operating system 760 through program modules 764 and data 766 stored in memory 730 and/or mass storage 750 to perform one or more actions. Accordingly, applications 762 can turn a general-purpose computer 710 into a specialized machine in accordance with the logic provided thereby.
All or portions of the claimed subject matter can be implemented using standard programming and/or engineering techniques to produce software, firmware, hardware, or any combination thereof to control a computer to realize the disclosed functionality. By way of example and not limitation, the extent virtualization system 100, or portions thereof, can be, or form part, of an application 762, and include one or more modules 764 and data 766 stored in memory and/or mass storage 750 whose functionality can be realized when executed by one or more processor(s) 720.
In accordance with one particular embodiment, the processor(s) 720 can correspond to a system on a chip (SOC) or like architecture including, or in other words integrating, both hardware and software on a single integrated circuit substrate. Here, the processor(s) 720 can include one or more processors as well as memory at least similar to processor(s) 720 and memory 730, among other things. Conventional processors include a minimal amount of hardware and software and rely extensively on external hardware and software. By contrast, an SOC implementation of processor is more powerful, as it embeds hardware and software therein that enable particular functionality with minimal or no reliance on external hardware and software. For example, the extent virtualization system 100 and/or associated functionality can be embedded within hardware in a SOC architecture.
The computer 710 also includes one or more interface components 770 that are communicatively coupled to the system bus 740 and facilitate interaction with the computer 710. By way of example, the interface component 770 can be a port (e.g., serial, parallel, PCMCIA, USB, FireWire . . . ) or an interface card (e.g., sound, video . . . ) or the like. In one example implementation, the interface component 770 can be embodied as a user input/output interface to enable a user to enter commands and information into the computer 710 through one or more input devices (e.g., pointing device such as a mouse, trackball, stylus, touch pad, keyboard, microphone, joystick, game pad, satellite dish, scanner, camera, other computer . . . ). In another example implementation, the interface component 770 can be embodied as an output peripheral interface to supply output to displays (e.g., CRT, LCD, plasma . . . ), speakers, printers, and/or other computers, among other things. Still further yet, the interface component 770 can be embodied as a network interface to enable communication with other computing devices (not shown), such as over a wired or wireless communications link.
What has been described above includes examples of aspects of the claimed subject matter. It is, of course, not possible to describe every conceivable combination of components or methodologies for purposes of describing the claimed subject matter, but one of ordinary skill in the art may recognize that many further combinations and permutations of the disclosed subject matter are possible. Accordingly, the disclosed subject matter is intended to embrace all such alterations, modifications, and variations that fall within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.