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Simplified Subscription Management for AHV with Red Hat Satellite Server

By Luke Congdon

Enterprise-Class Subscription Management on AHV

Over the past 18 years, Linux has transitioned from a niche OS to a leading server OS for private and public cloud. Linux is everywhere. In virtual environments, it is as present as ever. We see variants in public and private cloud. There are hundreds of Linux providers today including enterprise-targeted distributions. A few Linux vendors including Red Hat, SUSE Linux, and Canonical, have developed successful, enterprise-class operating system offerings which have been widely adopted by customers.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux, commonly referred to as RHEL, is one of the most popular choices for an enterprise-supported Linux distribution. Nutanix has supported RHEL as a guest OS on AHV since our earliest days. RHEL has multiple subscription options, including per-VM subscriptions, and VDC bulk subscriptions, validated via Red Hat Satellite Server.

Using Red Hat Enterprise Linux VDC Subscriptions with AHV

Nutanix now provides support for AHV within Red Hat Satellite Server. Leveraging Prism Central or Prism Element APIs, VM-to-host mapping data is now easily reported to Satellite Server. By enabling a simple method to track guest OS usage with Red Hat, Nutanix is helping AHV customers simplify OS subscription compliance and ensure consistent updates and patching while getting the most out of running RHEL on AHV. Go to Support Tools on portal.nutanix.com to find details and installation instructions for this solution.

How It Works

Virt-Who is an open-source agent which is used to register hypervisors and report VM guest IDs to the Red Hat Satellite Server and subscription manager. It identifies the relation of VM guests to the hosts they are running on, and reports them to the subscription manager in use. [paraphrased]

The virt-who-AHV implementation makes it simple to report AHV VM and host mappings to your subscription manager. Nutanix provides a ready-made RPM you can use. This RPM will work with both an AHV cluster using Prism Central, or an unmanaged AHV cluster which is not registered to Prism Central. The configuration file for the virt-who-AHV RPM easily accepts the IP address of either Prism Central or Prism Element.

Open Source Friendly

As a continued supporter of Linux and the open source community, Nutanix contributed our AHV support enhancements to the virt-who component of the Candlepin subscription manager project. (See virt-who/pull/209 and https://github.com/candlepin/virt-who/pull/231). By doing this, we encourage native support of AHV into any software that is leveraging the Candlepin subscription management solution.

Hassle-free Virtualization Subscription Management

Nutanix is working to help our customers invested in RHEL leverage the power and ease of inventory management and patching available from Red Hat Satellite Server. We’ve made the solution open source and contributed it to the virt-who repository to demonstrate our commitment to providing open, easy to use customer solutions. Subscription management with RHEL on AHV just got easier than ever. Try it today.

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