VMware CTO hits back at AWS tool to manage virtual machines

VMware CTO Chris Wolf warns users against being fooled by tools disguised as hybrid cloud management as AWS launches administration portal

VMware CTO Chris Wolf has warned cloud users to not be fooled by "tools disguised as hybrid cloud management” after Amazon launched a single sign-on portal for managing their on-premises and cloud IT.

The warning comes just two days after Amazon Web Services (AWS) launched a management portal plugin to help users import virtual machines into their Amazon infrastructure and undertake basic management tasks from VMware vCenter without leaving the AWS interface.

According to Amazon, the AWS Management Portal for VMware vCenter is a response to users that want to make progress in their cloud use by experimenting with AWS. "They don’t always have the time to learn a new set of tools and concepts," said Amazon’s chief evangelist, Jeff Barr.

The tool features integrated sign-on process and familiar look and feel. It even allows users to import existing VMware images to Amazon EC2. It is aimed at giving users full control over cloud-based resources with a single sign-on.

IT managers will find this blend of centralised control and cloud power to be a “potent mix”, said Barr. 

“VCenter admins can exercise full control over hybrid IT environments (both on-premises and EC2 instances) using a single user interface. They have full control over cloud-based resources with single sign-on,” he said.

VMware CTO hits back

But VMware has hit back and warned users to not make a “tactical Band-Aid” a permanent solution to their IT problems.

According to Wolf, importing virtual machines is easy but the new AWS management portal does not enable users to do many things such as using existing software licenses; applying policy governance across multi-clouds; retaining the third-party integrations they deployed using VMware tools; or even moving workloads back to their own datacentres or to another cloud provider.

“Don’t be fooled by basic management that is tactically useful today but can lead to increased lock-in down the road. The cloud service broker has to be multi-provider,” Wolf warned users through his blog post.

“You should demand consistent management, third party integration, and a common API that spans all hybrid cloud deployment scenarios.

"Choosing a tool that addresses an immediate need can help today, but can create more problems down the road if you’re not careful."

Wolf called on enterprise IT to reflect on their overall hybrid cloud management strategy, and choose a platform that is right for their individual long-term needs.

“When it comes to management, every product choice has implications. What seems sensible today can cost you dearly tomorrow,” he added.

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