On Day 1 of its annual conference VMworld 2014 themed "No Limits", VMware unveiled its strategies around open cloud platform OpenStack and around container technology Kubernetes. It also launched new tools to extend its software-defined datacentre and hybrid cloud offerings.
Open software-defined datacentre
One of the significant announcements was the VMware Integrated OpenStack - a service that provides enterprises - especially SMBs the flexibility to build a software-defined datacentre on any technology platform (VMware or not).
VMware Integrated OpenStack distribution is aimed at helping customers repatriate workloads from "unmanageable and insecure public clouds". Take that AWS.
Container technology and VMware infrastructures; Kubernetes collaboration
VMware is collaborating with Docker, Google and Pivotal to allow enterprises to run and manage container-based applications on its platforms.
At the annual conference, VMware said it has joined the Kubernetes community and will make Kubernetes' patterns, APIs and tools available to enterprises. Kubernetes, currently in pre-production beta, is an open-source implementation of container cluster management.
With Google, VMware's efforts will focus on bringing the pod based networking model of Open vSwitch to enable multi-cloud integration of Kubernetes.
Not only will deep integration with the VMware product line bring the benefits of Kubernetes to enterprise customers, but their commitment to invest in the core open source platform will benefit users running containers," said Joerg Heilig, VP Engineering, Google Cloud Platform. "Together, our work will bring VMware and Google Cloud Platform closer together as container based technologies become mainstream."
With Docker, it will collaborate to allow Docker Engine on VMware workflows. It will also work to improve interoperability between Docker Hub with VMware vCloud Air, VMware vCenter Server and VMware vCloud Automation Center.
New hybrid cloud capabilities
At VMworld, VMware released new hybrid cloud service capabilities and a new line-up of third-party mobile application services. The new capabilities include vCloud Air Virtual Private Cloud OnDemand that offers customers with on demand access to vCloud Air. Another capability - VMware vCloud Air Object Storage - is aimed at providing users with scalable storage options for unstructured data. It will enable customers to easily scale to petabytes and only pay for what they use, according to the company.
It also launched mobile development services within VMware's vCloud Air's service catalog.
Management as a service offerings
VMware also released two new IT management tools under its vRealize brand- for managing a software-defined datacentre and public cloud infrastructure services (IaaS).
VMware vRealize Air Automation is the cloud management tool that allows users to automate the delivery of application and infrastructure services while maintaining compliance with IT policies.
Meanwhile, VMware vRealize Operations Insight offers performance management, capacity optimization, and real-time log analytics. The tool also extends operations management beyond vSphere to an enterprise's entire IT infrastructure. Another sign than VMware is opening up its ecosystem to accommodate other virtualisation platforms.
Partnerships with Dell on software defined services
VMware has extended collaboration with Dell to combine its NSX network virtualisation platform with the latter's converged infrastructure products.
"Global organisations are adopting the software-defined datacentre as an open, agile, secure and efficient architecture to simplify IT and transition to the hybrid cloud," said Raghu Raghuram, executive vice president, SDDC division, VMware. "The software-defined datacentre enables open innovation at speeds that cannot be matched in the hardware-defined world. As partners, VMware and Dell will advance networking in the SDDC, and collaborate to make advanced network virtualisation available to mutual customers."
Partnership with HP on hybrid cloud
VMware and HP have extended their collaboration to give momentum to users' SDDC and hybrid cloud adoption. As part of the partnership, HP Helion OpenStack will support enterprise-class VMware virtualisation technologies.
The companies will also make standalone HP-VMware networking solution generally available. Together, these collaborative efforts can help simplify the adoption of the software-defined datacentre and hybrid cloud with less risk, and with greater operational efficiency and lower costs.
All in all, looks like VMware is opening up to competitive platforms and warming up to open source technologies but retains its standoffish traits when it comes to public cloud services.