XenServer Features

XenServer is an enterprise-class, cloud-proven virtualization platform that delivers all of the critical features needed for any server and datacenter virtualization implementation. A copy of the feature matrix that corresponds to the latest release can be found here. The following list summarizes some of the key capabilities of XenServer.

Core Platform

XenServer is based on the Xen Project™ hypervisor.  The Xen Project hypervisor is a bare metal virtualization platform used by XenServer to deliver near native application performance for x86 workloads in an Intel and AMD environment.  

Management Capabilities

Multi-server Management

XenCenter provides all the virtual machine management, monitoring and general administration, and general administration functions in a single interface. Administrators can easily manage hundreds of virtual machines from a centralized, highly available management console that installs on any Windows® desktop. The resilient distributed management architecture in XenServer distributes server management data across the servers in a resource pool to ensure that there is no single point of management failure.

Role Based Administration

Role-based administration improves security and enables delegated access, control, and usage of XenServer pools by maintaining a tiered access structure with varying levels of permissions.

Performance Alerting and Reporting

Receive immediate notification with historical reporting of VM performance to enable the rapid identification and diagnosis of fault or failure in the virtual infrastructure.

Live VM Migration

XenMotion™ eliminates the need for planned downtime by enabling active virtual machines to be moved to a new host with no application outages or downtime.

Live Storage Migration

Move live running virtual machines and their associated virtual disk image within and across resource pools leveraging local and shared storage. This enables users to move a VM and its virtual disk image from a development to production environment, move between tiers of storage when a VM is limited by storage capacity, and perform maintenance and upgrades with zero downtime.

Host Failure Protection

Deliver high availability by automatically restarting virtual machines if a failure occurs at the VM, hypervisor or server level. Link aggregation bonds network interfaces for network redundancy and increased throughput.

Host Power Management

Take advantage of embedded hardware features to lower datacenter electricity consumption by dynamically consolidating VMs on fewer systems and then powering off underutilized servers as demand for services fluctuates.

Memory Overcommit

Reduce costs and improve application performance and protection by sharing unused server memory between VMs on the host server.

Heterogeneous Resource Pools

Enables resource pools to contain servers with different processor types, and support full XenMotion, high availability, and shared storage functionality.

Site Recovery

Provides site-to-site disaster recovery planning and services for virtual environments. Site recovery is easy to set up, fast to recover, and has the ability to frequently test to ensure disaster recovery plans remain valid.

Advanced Virtual Graphics

Support for graphics hardware from the leading graphics vendors (Nvidia, Intel, AMD) as well as live-migration of vGPU-accelerated VMs (XenMotion). 

Revolutionary Security

Protect virtual workloads from the most advanced attacks such as malware and ransome ware.

Accelerated Server and Desktop Performance

Integrated caching mechanisms that utilize local resources (i.e., memory and storage) to improve virtual server and desktop performance while dramatically reducing network utilization.

Health Check

Enables administrators to enroll host systems with Citrix Insight Services and schedule receipt of reports on a recurring basis that provide information pertaining to the overall health of the XenServer host environment.

USB Pass-Through

Allows XenServer to assign a physical USB device to a VM, which would then be seen by the VM as a local USB device.

Windows Continuum

Enables users of Windows10 virtual desktops to transition seamlessly between desktop and tablet mode.

Release Model Options

Long-Term Service Release (LTSR) and Current Release (CR) options allow customers to choose the release model best-suited for their IT environment.

About XenServer

XenServer is the leading open source virtualization platform, powered by the Xen Project hypervisor and the XAPI toolstack. It is used in the world's largest clouds and enterprises.
Technical support for XenServer is available from Citrix.