VMworld 2009: Ahead in the Cloud

September 14, 2009 at 8:19 pm Leave a comment

Sandra Glaser Cheek

Sandra Glaser Cheek

I spent several days at VMworld 2009 last week where I was one of 12,000+ attendees (roughly, about ¼ of the attendees were partners) gathered to immerse ourselves in all things virtualization. There were a few new product announcements – all ripe with the notion of clouds and an overarching computing paradigm, but there were really no big surprises. A few highlights that stood out for me:

Last year VMworld 2008 was focused on the cloud vision. This year the focus was centered on how the nuts and bolts all come together. Throughout the presentations and the show floor, it was clear that VMware has been working hard with its OEM, Alliance and Hosting partner relationships to showcase these “nuts and bolts.” In the coming months I expect that we will see more joint marketing efforts and partnership announcements. Looking down the road to VMworld 2010, it looks like we may finally see the emphasis to be on VMware customers who took the leap, and are ready to show off their work to their peers.

In my opinion, the announcement of the SpringSource acquisition was probably the most profound and least witnessed. SpringSource, with their already widely adopted Hyperic IQ and Spring/Grails object framework, enables developers to transiently deploy and monitor applications directly to public and private clouds through a customized version and the eclipse IDE ((http://tinyurl.com/mts6as). Conceptually, this is the world VMware painted: they’ve obtained an open source company, focused on JAVA, with the eclipse IDE to allow developers to toggle a menu to deploy at will a full Java app into a cloud (visible and monitored through vCenter). It will be interesting to see how this new direction will fit into the channel, how VMware’s hosting partners program will evolve, and how important these partners with cloud offerings will become.

In other cloud news, VMware has taken up cloud seeding in a direct challenge to the leading vendor, Amazon EC2 and Amazon Web Services. CEO Paul Maritz said that VMware will provide an offering to service providers called vCloud Express – a set of virtualization tools that allow them to set up low end, self-provisioning, pay-as-you-go cloud services that match up more easily with the VMware environments inside the enterprise. There were many cloud services partners on hand to demo and support this offering like AT&T, Verizon, Terremark, Savvis, Rightscale, and Hosting.com to name a few.

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