Saturday, July 2, 2016

Xen Orchestra 5.0 [feedly]

Xen Orchestra 5.0
// Xen Orchestra

Here we are! Xen Orchestra 5.0 is available, and it's awesome. Also, it's our biggest release ever (60 issues closed on the 5.0 milestone).


  • new UI from scratch
  • awesome performances
  • a bunch of new features
  • translated in English, French, Portuguese and Hebrew
  • and bug fixes

This is also the start of a brand new branch with a lot of exciting innovations. Let's already see what we got in this 5.0 version.

As you can see, the commit activity is huge since we started to work on 5.0:

Parallel release

For the first time, we decided to release it in parallel (ie without replacing) the 4.16 version. All XOA users can access this new UI by adding /v5 in their current XOA URL.

Eg: https://myXoaUrl/v5

The "old" interface will be still the default until a next release: we want to be sure everything is fine before changing this!

Please report feedback in our dedicated topic:

Perfect XenServer 7 support

It's not only we support the great new XenServer 7: Xen Orchestra is now even better with it. Because Citrix teams made a fantastic job in fixing issues, we can leverage more and more features without any bugs. Check our blog post on how XenServer 7 (Dundee) is great.

Serious scale

We built this release by checking constantly the performances on installations with more than 1000 VMs. Yes, you read it correctly. It's blazing fast, even with thousands VMs. Oh and by the way, it consumes less memory!

Things getting serious

Here is the home view loading time between XO 4 (current) and XO 5 (in ms, less is better), with respectively 50 and 1200 VMs:

Respectively 8 and 38 times faster!

More tests

We found some ways to make more tests, on both XenServer and Xen Orchestra, to do more QA before releasing anything. We are injecting artificial events in the XAPI (XenServer API) to simulate huge infrastructures. Also, some of our customers were very helpful and gave us the opportunity to make real scale tests in their own XenServer environment.

It helped a lot to improve global quality of Xen Orchestra!

New UI

We've made some previous blog posts about the new awesome web interface we got in Xen Orchestra, giving you the best XenServer web solution than ever:

What does it bring for real? See below.

Responsive at all stages

Combining break points and viewport-percentage lengths, we could deliver a smooth experience on a lot of devices:

Editable fields everywhere

You can edit VMs names, disks, hosts, whatever in one click! Everywhere you see a dotted underlined text, it's quick and easy:

You can even undo the operation by clicking on the green check.

But what about content which is a link? (meaning clicking on a VM name will send you on this VM?). The trick is to do a long click and it will be editable!

In the home view:

This new shiny feature also allows modifying even remote store or other things which weren't editable before.

By the power of the search

The new home view unlock a very exciting thing: a powerful search engine for your VMs and hosts.

UI assisted filters

When you start with a powerful filter system, it's always a good idea to have pre-configured filters in the UI.

For example, you can filter your VMs by Pools, Hosts or even tags!

Also, the search bar itself got some pre-existing search:

Share your search

Any search will generate a URL. So you can share this URL with anyone to get the correct filter, eg a search of running VMs with the production tags will be accessible from https://xoaUrl/#/home?s=power_state%3Arunning+tags%3Aproduction

Advanced use cases
  • Finding all your outdated tools in your wholes VMs? xenTools:"out of date"
  • Displaying VMs with pending operations? current_operations:""
  • HVM guests: virtualizationMode:hvm
  • Filter by OS and running state? power_state:run os_version:distro:!debian

Also, not (!) and and or (|) operators works, eg all non-windows VMs: os_version:distro:!windows, or even more precise, all non-windows AND non-debian VMs: os_version:distro:!windows |(os_version:distro:!debian).


You can also sort your VM or host with some criteria:

XenServer Tasks view

We got a dedicated XenServer task view now:

Obviously, those bars are moving in live while we got new numbers from XenServer. They are grouped by Pools (clickable to go there, and the host where is the task is also clickable).

Also, the total number of tasks is visible in the main menu:

Easy wizards

Adding a storage, creating a VM, etc: those operations are now:

  • easier
  • more accessible (left menu)

Just a quick example:

Powerful VM import

Our import UI is now totally new, and support:

  • Pool/SR selection (select the default SR automatically)
  • multiple files
  • drag and drop
  • upload progress

More stats

I bet you love live stats on your hosts or VMs. You'll be happy here:

Large infrastructure support

We also managed to never slow down the interface, even when you open a selector with 10000+ objects. We are supporting very large infrastructure without breaking a sweat in the UI! This is possible, for example, with React Virtualized, which display only current selection and do not draw all objects at once.

Default welcome views

We are now display more stuff when you haven't any objects to display. Eg without server connected:

Or without any existing VMs:

Better CPU/RAM edition

You can now configure min/max static/dynamic RAM, and the number max of VCPUs. Everything inline, both in main tab:

In advanced tab:

Sorted/filtered tables

For example, in the "Health" view, you can sort & filter all your VDI's SRs easily. In the following example: show me all non-lvm storage sorted by usage:

Better heatmaps

Our current heatmap uses better colors and is really faster to fetch all needed metrics

Network TX (upload) usage on a email server. You could clearly see that the most of activity came during working hours.

Health view improved

The new health view display sorted tables, with pagination and filters. You got:

  • a sorted list of all SRs
  • same thing for orphaned VMs and VDIs
  • and an alerts lists (alerts message from your XS hosts)


You can now use Xen Orchestra in your own language. English is activated by default, but translations exists in French, Portuguese and Hebrew.

The main work was to have an internationalization system for everything in the interface. Now it's done, a lot of new translations are coming fast. Do you want to help? Go there and create your own language file in few hours!

Better DR process

Before this release, you would have to select a destination pool for VM replication. Now, you can select any SR you want. That's more flexible!

Improved restore VM

If you restore a VM which is saved with continuous delta backup, we are now trying to re-attach all interface on previous networks (if they are found).

Also, we are using a brand new UI for this, which is far better, especially on large infrastructure, because:

  • we display only one line per VM
  • restore detail is in a modal window
  • you can filter VMs, and it's paginated

VM creation with copy

By default, we were creating template VMs with disks using the clone ability (snapshots from your SR). Now, you can also choose to copy the template disk: this will be longer but performances will be better in the long run.

What's next

Hey this is a great release. But guess what? That's just a start! We just dropped the first bricks of what would be the future of UI for your virtualized infrastructure, and/or your own Cloud!

Coming in 5.1:

  • improve the UI thanks to your feedback
  • better handling error messages coming from XenServer
  • smart backup on the way!
  • better self-service management


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