If my Dom0 on Xen is kernel 2.6.18 with xen 3.3.1 can i boot a, say, 2.6.34 kernel in a DomU ? Background: 2.6.18 runs like a charm on Dom0. Don't want to update here, because there is special Hardware on the Host (ISDN-Card, etc.). Building a new kernel with this Modules for Dom0 is pain !

But i want to upgrade some DomU's to a newer Kernel...

  • That pygrub stuff?
    – jirib
    Jun 22, 2012 at 13:59
  • And your distribution is?
    – Nils
    Jun 22, 2012 at 21:18

2 Answers 2


Yes, it should normally work. (even for PVs). For PVs the XEN-version contained in the kernel is more important than the kernel-version itselv.

I have currently XEN 3.2.3 (SLES10 SP4) with PV DomU ranging from SLES9 over CentOS 4, 5 to SLES11 SP1 (XEN 3.0 up to XEN 4.0). A problem just arises with RedHat 6 - but that is due to a new compress format of the kernel that SLES10 SP4 is not able to decode (it runs well as HVM or using SLES11 SP2 as Dom0).


I'm not entirely sure about PV, but if you're using HVM you can certainly have a different kernel.

Either way it's easy to try. Shutdown the domU and make a copy (or snapshot if you're using lvm) of the domU's disk image. Turn it back on and upgrade the kernel.

If anything doesn't work, just revert.

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