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Vmware's Direction on Cloud Computing Shows at VMworld 2011

VMworld 2011 drew 19,000 people with another big event offering the latest technology, vendors and announcements, even in the wake of the bad weather on the East Coast. This is one of my top go-to events of the year, where I get to see loads of new technology, network with the community, plus check out the vendors and their latest products. A few of the announcements are of special interest to cloud computing:

VXLAN: VMware has worked with Cisco and other vendors to come up with a way to separate a machine’s network ID from its physical location. The goal is to make it easier to move and relocate machines and applications in the cloud. Think of vMotion and Storage vMotion in today’s datacenter, with the ability to move VMs while running without worries about IP address changes, because it’s all done on the LAN. Suppose this is extended to external locations outside the datacenter over the WAN — a number of things can be accomplished, such as disaster avoidance. This flexibility would be an added bonus to those using VMware’s vSphere 5 and vCloud Powered solutions. Read more at VMware’s The Console Blog, in Steve Harrod’s recent entry, Towards Virtualized Networking for the Cloud.

vCloud Services: VMware introduced three vCloud Services (vCloud Datacenter, vCloud Powered, and vCloud Express). It’s common industry knowledge that VMware does not have its own public cloud. VMware has positioned itself largely as an enabler of cloud computing, and not just by virtualizing servers. This has meant more standardization across different cloud providers. When multiple vendors are using the same cloud platforms, the customer benefits in several ways: For one thing, customers can be less concerned about being locked in with a single cloud provider. If you’re not satisfied with one vCloud provider, you can simply import your virtual infrastructure from one provider and export it into another. Since the core foundation is the same, everything should work fine.

Cloud Foundry: Cloud Foundry, which is still in beta, was announced earlier this year, and Micro Cloud Foundry is the latest announcement with the open source platform. Micro Cloud Foundry puts the open platform-as-a-service (PaaS) in an appliance that can be downloaded and run on a Mac or PC. The Cloud Foundry platform runs Spring, Rails, Node.js, and Scala applications. And because it’s open source, you’ll find other PaaS platforms based on Cloud Foundry such as Stackato and Appfog. What better way to get developers on board with the platform?

Project Horizon: VMware is starting to focus more on the end user in this post-PC era. VMware previewed Project Horizon, which will give the end user a “Cloud Identity,” enabling a secure personalized user experience across devices, while giving IT the controls that they need.

These were just a few of the many announcements that came out of VMworld this year. If you went, what were your thoughts? If you didn’t get to attend, please check out the VMworld.com landing page for more information on this year’s events.

Antone Heyward / Sep 15, 2011

Antone Heyward is an IT Professional with years of experience working with Windows Server, Virtualization (VMware, HyperV and Citrix XenServer), shared storage environments and datacenter infrastru...more