Today is the day that VMworld 2009 in San Francisco officially kicks off. For such an early start with the keynote at 8:00am there were plenty of people around even at 7:30am.
Armed with a hot chocolate (trying to avoid caffeine at the moment) I headed in. Luckily I got into the keynote area with plenty of time and managed to get a table in the bloggers section – this sure made life easier rather than trying to juggle a laptop and camera on my lap.
Tod Nielsen, VMware’s Chief Operating Officer kicked off proceedings with a few facts and figures around the uptake of virtualization by businesses. The most pertinent was around the uptake of VMware – 97% of Fortune 1000 Companies use VMware (leaving 35 companies who don’t – but they’re working on getting them onboard).
A clear message that he really hit home was that VMware’s goal was to “energise and save”. According to Tod VMware is going to energise business through IT in doing so businesses will be able to spend more money on innovation and less on maintenance.
On with the show…. Next up, a familiar face – VMware CEO, Paul Maritz.
Paul kicked off with stating that “Business Agility Depends on IT Agility”. VMware wants customers to become more productive with lower cost. Virtualization is the enabler.
A term that Paul used a few times was “pillars of complexity” in relation to how VMware will enable businesses to free their applications from any such restrictions. In doing so they will easily move these applications between the private and public clouds – of the VMware vCloud variety of course…
He informed that the move to the Cloud will not happen overnight but instead there will be an “evolutionary path” where incremental steps will be taken in the move from the data centre out to a service providers (Cloud) – of the vCloud variety of course. 🙂
These steps will be part of a “virtualization journey”.
First there was
light, sorry, Server Consolidation’ then there will be a move to the ‘Internal/External Cloud’ and finally there will be ‘Automatic Operations’ where applications will be put on auto pilot to move between cloud services (private and public) as needed.
This will lead to the following business benefits:
Capex Savings –> Opex Savings –> Business Agility
Paul Maritz was of the definite opinion that “there is now no application where you can’t legitimately get the benefits of virtualization”. This I have to agree with as more companies are now accepting that potentially resource intensive applications such as databases (eg: MS SQL) and MS Exchange can now be virtualized with little impact to performance. “VMware have worked very hard on increasing all round performance”. They can “now deliver beyond mainframe performance.”
Paul also gave there following statistics:
- VMware vSphere downloads – 30K per week since productions.
- 75% of customers surveyed will upgrade to vSphere this year.
Next up some of VMware’s larger partners were brought out to demonstrate their product offering each of which touched on a key area that Paul informs VMware are focussed on (management, vCloud. and VMware View)
Tom Brey from IBM demonstrated integration of an IBM server’s power consumption into VMware vCenter Server (see image below). Good stuff – I imagine it is a matter of time before the other server manufacturers provide something similar.
Steve Dupree from HP (Director, Platform Virtualization) also demonstrated a really useful extension to the VMware vCenter Server that will please many HP Proliant shops out there. There will be an “HP Integration Software” tab available within the vClient. This provides a view into the underlying hardware of any HP Proliant ESX hosts which will negate the need to switch between the vClient and HP SIM. What wasn’t clear was whether there was a requirement to run HP Systems Insight Manager somewhere within the environment..
Paul M takes centre stage again and outlines VMware’s aim around management:
Capacity –> Configuration –> Operations –> Continuity.
Tools will be released throughout the year targeting these key areas.
Also tools to provide “self service/provisioning” (ie: Lab Manger) to internal users and have this closely linked to charge-back (ie: VMware Charge-Back) will continue to evolve. Providing this information to end users and their managers will give them an appreciation of the cost in provisioning and running of a server. This should help greatly in the reduction of server sprawl that many businesses currently experience especially from their development teams.
Bridging to the External Cloud.
Linking in with yesterdays announcement around the vCloud API. Paul M reiterates that VMware has, and will continue to work with the service provider industry to ensure a smooth transition from VMware vSphere private cloud to external cloud.
These service providers will be given the VMware vCloud ‘Enterprise Ready’ logo to display making them easy to distinguish to potential customers.
VMware vCloud Express
The biggest announcement for the keynote has to be vCloud Express. This is a new programme which will be provided by VMware vCloud Service Providers and will allow for rapid, cost effective provisioning of VMs into the public cloud. VMware has worked with Cloud Service providers to refine this new service.
Currently there are over 1000 service providers who have joined the VMware vCloud initiative. Below Image: A list of some of the key vCloud Express Service Providers.
The next topic area was…
For this topic Chris Renter, Manager of IT Architecture at Telus Communications took to the stage to give a brief overview of Telus and how they provide thousands of virtual desktops in Canada. There were a handful of PowerPoint slides to Chris’s presentation who at the end announced that his entire presentation was took place in a VMware View session over their PCoIP (PC over IP Protocol) product. It was unfortunate that he left announcing this until the end as it would have had much more impact at the start of his presentation.
At this stage 9:30am was drawing near and people started leaving in droves which was a shame really as Paul’s final topic on the VMware’s recent acquisition of Spring Source, which is a big thing. If not obviously apparent to the masses now it will potentially play a large part VMware’s vCloud application integration roadmap going forward by providing a light weight framework on which Cloud based applications can talk to vSphere.
For those of you not familiar with SpringSource check out their site here. Paul M made it clear that despite the acquisition SpringSource would continue to remain open source and also continue to support Java and a range of platforms.
Rod Johnson CEO of Spring Source then gave a brief demonstration of how easy it was to produce code that could be easily moved to the vCloud. Good stuff – trust me this is a product to watch out for!
This demonstration ended the keynote. The general feel on Twitter and those around me was that VMware had fired off their big announcements prematurely yesterday leaving the key note a little flat compared to past years.
I personally think that vCloud Express and the release of the vCloud API’s although not as instantly gratifying as that of VMworld Europe’s vSphere announced will be very significant to the increasing number of companies adopting Cloud technologies going forward.
Paul Maritz – vCloud Event.
I, along with many other bloggers and press attended this 10:45am session with Paul Maritz. As expected much of what Paul had to say was based around VMware’s progress into the Cloud alongside strong partnerships with some large global telecoms and service provider companies. Rather than my reinvent the wheel, Scott Lowe has written a good post here that nicely covers off this session.