Putting an entire N-tier application system into a private or hybrid cloud appears to create something that does not fit into the existing definitions for IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS. We need to determine if a new category of cloud computing is warranted. And then if it is, we need to find some appropriate and non-offensive name and acronym for it.
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How does Project Avalon’s Excalibur component focus on making a new FlexCast platform and deliver applications beyond the PC. How does Project Avalon’s Merlin component deliver Self-service provision, management and service orchestration. Will these components deliver Windows apps and desktops as a true cloud service and can these services be compare to VMware’s Horizon?
With vFabric Application Director, VMware is bringing a whole new level of value – application management including the life-cycle of custom and purchased applications across physical, virtual and cloud based environments to the market and its customers. The willingness to work with application software vendors in the Application Marketplace also represents a ground-breaking change for VMware – a company that had never previously partnered very effectively with other vendors of software.
VMware has updated its Cloud Management offerings with vCenter Operations 5.6, vCloud Automation Center, vCloud Connector Advanced 2.0, vFabric Application Director 5.0, vFabric APM 5.0, ITBM 7.5 and an IT Benchmarking Service. These are now cross platform offerings spanning multiple hypervisors (vSphere, Xen, KVM), multiple clouds (vCloud, Amazon, Windows Azure), and including support for physical hardware (VCE, IBM, HP, Dell).
VMware is clearly pursuing a “waterfall” strategy with the editions of the suite. This means that leading edge functionality will most often show up first in the Enterprise Edition of the vCloud Suite and then over time migrate down into the Advanced and Standard Editions. This will set up a battle royal of suite vs best of breed for each of the components of the suite – with each battle focused upon both functionality and pricing differences.
Cloud Computing ...
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Bundling the Foundation Edition of vCenter Operations into every edition of vSphere is VMware’s strategy for seeding its customer base with just enough of vC OPS to entice customers to move up and purchase a higher level edition of the suite. However, the least expensive version of vCenter Operation is now $125 per VM instead of $50 per VM. Finally support has been added for monitoring OS instances that run on other hypervisors and other clouds.
With this set of announcements, VMware has proven its intentions of joining the ranks of the major cloud management software vendors. Virtualization and cloud computing represent disruptions that create an opportunity for a new multi-billion dollar management vendor at the table. VMware has announced a suite of management functionality that makes it a credible vendor at this table. Legacy vendors of management solutions like IBM, CA, BMC and HP are now served notice that their businesses and customer footprints are at risk. Game on.