Virtio on Xen

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One Line Summary

How does Virtio compare with traditional Xen PV drivers?


Virtio is the main platform for IO virtualization in KVM.
While the Virtio frontends in Linux are hypervisor independent, the Virtio backends in Qemu are KVM specific.
This talk will go through the work that has been done to allow the Qemu Virtio backends to work on the Xen hypervisor.
It will compare Virtio with the traditional Xen PV driver model, explaining the architectural differences and their impact on performances.


xen, virtio, paravirtualized drivers

Presentation Materials



  • Biography

    Anthony PERARD is a Software Development Engineer at Citrix since a year. His main task is to upstream the Xen’s fork of QEMU.

  • Biography

    Stefano Stabellini is a Senior Software Engineer at Citrix, working on the Open Source Xen Platform team.
    He has been working on Xen since 2007, focusing on several different projects: Qemu, MiniOS, libxenlight and, more recently, Linux.
    Before joining Citrix he was a researcher at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition, working on mobile ad hoc networks.