Xen Project FAQ

Why is Xen becoming a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project?

Xen.org, which hosts several sub-projects including the Hypervisor, XCP / XAPI, Mirage OS and the ARM Hypervisor, has seen growth of its contributor base from 6 major vendors and organizations contributing more than 1% to the codebase in 2010 to 13 in 2012. Further growth opportunity is driven by a trend to low-power ARM processors. Citrix, which leads the Xen.org community, has worked with organizations contributing to the Xen code base to find a suitable non-profit home for Xen. The Linux Foundation is the natural home for Xen as Linux itself is a key component in Xen based software stacks. Most contributors to Xen already collaborate with each other as part of the Linux Foundation. The growth of the Xen Project™ community can be better supported by an independent and neutral non-profit organization like the Linux Foundation, with strong meritocratic principles and in a vendor neutral setting, rather than by an individual vendor.

Who are active contributors to Xen?

In 2012, the top Xen code contributions were made by Citrix, SUSE, University of British Columbia and other universities, GridCentric, NSA, Fujitsu, SpectraLogic, UPC, Amazon, AMD, Intel, iWeb, Oracle and some individuals.

Who are the founding members of the Xen Project initiative as a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project?

Amazon Web Services, AMD, Bromium, Calxeda, CA Technologies, Cisco, Citrix, Google, Intel, Oracle, Samsung and Verizon.

What will happen to Xen.org?

Xen.org will become xenproject.org and will be rebranded as the Xen Project. The domain change will not happen immediately, but will be carefully planned and executed working with the community to avoid disruption.

Why has Xen.org been renamed to XenProject.org?

The use of the Xen.org domain name and Xen logo is associated with the Xen trademark. A new trademark has been created for the Xen Project. The Xen Project community will use the XenProject.org domain, the new Xen Project logo and Xen Project trademark. Content will be migrated from Xen.org to XenProject.org over time.

What changes to Xen websites can I expect in the near future?

We created a new community website under the xenproject.org domain. Besides the introduction of the new Xen Project community site, the following changes will happen in the coming weeks. The old xen.org website will be deprecated and archived (but stay accessible under the xenproject.org domain). Other xen.org related websites such as wiki.xen.org, blog.xen.org, etc. will be migrated from the xen.org domain to the xenproject.org domain. As much as possible, references to Xen on xen.org and xenproject.org will be changed to Xen Project. As we could not show you the xenproject.org website, there will also be plenty of opportunity to give feedback on the new site.

I am a Xen Developer: how will this impact me?

For the most part, this will not impact you at all. The licenses and all processes related to code contribution and development stay the same. However, the name of Xen.org has changed. References to the project in official documentation and other official project assets will change to Xen Project over time.

I am a Xen User: how will this impact me?

This will not impact you at all. All binaries, their licenses, and all documentation will not change. However references to the project in official documentation and other official project assets will change to Xen Project over time. With the move to become a Linux Foundation Collaborative project we have created a new Xen Project website with increased focus on users.

Will there be any Governance changes?

Not immediately, but some changes are expected to be proposed in the near future. The Xen Project developer community has a well-defined process for making changes to its governance, which includes community review and approval by voting. Some changes, such as the addition of the Xen Project Advisory Board in the definition section and some corrections to terminology are expected. In all, no significant changes to Xen Project Governance are expected.

What will happen to the old Xen.org Advisory Board?

The old Xen.org Advisory Board will be dissolved.

What is the role of the new Xen Project Advisory Board?

As an open source project, Xen Project leadership will - as it has been in the past - performed by its technical leaders (project leads, committers and maintainers). However, even with the best technical leadership, bills must still be paid and many other administrative details must be attended to. In addition, those organizations who contribute to the project, both financially and with other resources, need a place to come together to collaborate.

The Xen Project Advisory Board is comprised of companies who are committed to the market and technical success of the project. It helps coordinate marketing and outreach activities between companies with a vested interest in the marketplace success of Xen Project initiative, and through investment decisions helps reduce redundancies in build and test infrastructure. Administrative and executive leaders from member organizations participate on the Advisory Board as well as several sub-groups that perform vital non-technical functions for the project, including finance, advocacy and outreach, infrastructure management, and community management, with the workload spread among member organizations. Member companies provide financial support and set high-level policy decisions such as trademark and funding requirements, and are expected to take an active technical role in the Xen Project activities.

The Xen Project Advisory Board is complementary to the roles of project leads, committers and maintainers within the Xen Project initiative, with both working closely together to ensure the overall priorities of the project are aligned. However, committers and maintainers are responsible for day-to-day technical project operations, and are the final decision makers on matters related to code within Xen Project activities and sub-projects.

How will the Xen Project Advisory Board interact with the sub-projects?

Ultimately the decision of what sub-projects are added to the Xen Project initiative rests with the technical leadership, not the Advisory Board. The Advisory Board only gets involved in the case when a request for project resources is made, for example for build infrastructure or compute resources. In these cases, the advisory board will evaluate the request and decide whether it merits investment of project resources.

Will organizations need to be members of the Linux Foundation or members of the Xen Project Community to get involved with Xen Project development?

No. Any organization can use Xen Project code as long as they follow the terms in the license. Similarly anyone can offer code contributions to improve Xen Project code. Companies will, however, need to be members of the Xen Project Advisory Board and a member of the Linux Foundation in order to vote on non-technical decisions such as trademark policies, compliance programs, investment of funding, etc.

I have been using the Xen® trademark on my website: will I be affected?

For the sake of accuracy, please change the old Xen logo to the new Xen Project logo. By doing so, you are showing that you support the Xen Project. Making this change will take time, and so we do not expect you to change all your prior use of the Xen logo overnight. That said, we would appreciate it if you would update your website and all use of the marks to be consistent with this change as soon as practicable.