Comment 8 for bug 732046

On Mon, 14 Mar 2011, Tim Gardner wrote:

> Xen components are built as modules in the -server flavour, whereas they
> are built into the -virtual flavour. Can this be solved with some
> initramfs magic?
>
> Incidentally, that is the _only_ substantive difference between -server
> and -virtual (packaging differences notwithstanding).

there is at least 1 patch I'm aware of that would not be able to be
carried in -server. I believe the -virtual kernel sets the max memory to
70G or some such number. That obviously would not be suitable for
-server, but is required to run successfully in EC2's t1.micro instances.
Stefan can surely elaborate on that. I suspect that this is what Loic hit
when his -server kernels failed to boot on EC2.

The main issue here is that as soon as we split off -virtual from
sub-flavour to flavour, it diverged. There is value in that divergence
(we can boot on all Ec2 instance types), but it also is a pain.

The smaller size of -virtual is very desirable.

$ apt-cache show linux-image-2.6.38-6-virtual | grep ^Installed-Size
Installed-Size: 32644
$ apt-cache show linux-image-2.6.38-6-server | grep ^Installed-Size
Installed-Size: 143520

Our UEC images occupy ~ 600M of disk space installed, so that 110M is
substantial.