VMware wants to get you out of ‘Hotel California’: Page 2 of 2
By A. Asohan December 3, 2013
Software-defined everything else
Meanwhile, Si (pic) also said that the forces that are shaping IT today – mobile, the cloud, social media and big data – is causing a dramatic shift to what VMware calls the ‘mobile cloud environment.’
“These forces are completely disrupting the IT industry. People are beginning to look at IT as not a physical thing, but as services. I want Facebook, I go to the cloud; I want email, I go to the cloud; I want storage, I go to the cloud,” he said.
“It may be a new thing for us in the older generation; but Generation Y has already experienced IT as a service before they even enter the corporate world,” he said.
The one thing these four tech forces have in common is that they are putting increased pressure on IT departments within organisations to deliver IT services, and to do it quickly.
“People can no longer wait one month for an application to be deployed,” said Si, adding that VMware’s response to these forces shaping IT today is software-defined data centre.
“Today, you can provision a virtual machine in 14 minutes, but everything else needs time in terms of processes and provisioning, whether it is turning off the firewalls, linking it up to storage or integrating it into the network,” he added. “The first thing we want to do with the software-defined data centre is to get rid of these bottlenecks.”
There are four key elements to VMware’s software-defined data centre, with the first being to extend virtual compute resources to all applications.
“Five or six years ago, many companies may have still been hesitant about extending virtualisation to core, mission-critical applications,” said Si.”No longer – now it’s not a matter of what we can virtualise, but when.
The second key element is to transform storage to align with application demands. “Storage should be available on demand.
“The third element is virtualising the network … extending the same disruptive benefits of virtualisation to the network itself, which today is the bottleneck. We’re using the same design we’ve been using for the last 20-30 years, and that needs to change too,” he added.
Finally, the fourth element is automating the management tools, which incidentally falls into Phase 3 of VMware’s ‘journey to full virtualisation’ model.
You can check out, but never leave
It is the question of management tools as well that VMware hopes to address by launching its VMware vCloud Hybrid Service in May, saying that the service allows customers to use the same skills, tools, networking and security models across both public and private cloud environments.
“Our customers have been asking for common management tools for both their public and private clouds for some time now,” said Robertson.
“The cloud has commoditised IT; it has transformed IT in much the same way that Amazon has transformed our book-buying,” he said, adding that employees no longer wanted to wait months for their IT department to deploy new applications when they could get new functionality within minutes by going to the cloud.
“IT departments are getting concerned about this because there is a loss of control and security,” he said.
But when IT departments and CIOs move workloads to the public cloud to release this pressure, they want to be able to manage them as well, with a common set of management tools.
“The problem is that it’s easy to move your workloads to the public cloud, but if you want to bring them back in, you can’t,” said Robertson. “Once you move your workloads to a public cloud, it’s like checking into Hotel California – you cannot leave.”
VMware claims vCloud Hybrid Service allows this, allowing CIOs or IT managers to move workloads between the public and their internal clouds. The service has been launched in Europe and the United States, but will only be coming to Asia next year.
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