Feature

From vRAM to vCloud, VMware is the talk of the town

Julia Anderson

Everyone’s got something to say about VMware these days. Whether in response to the vendor’s vRAM licensing change-of-heart, its new cloud evaluation service or simply in anticipation of VMworld 2012, the virtualization community has VMware on the tip of its tongue.

If you’ve missed anything from the past week’s news, or simply want to catch up before jetting off to the conference, take a look at some of the more colorful quotes and predictions.

“I am very happy, and seeing the responses on Twitter, everyone in the VMware eco-system is happy, [that] this bad idea called vRAM is off the table.”
Marcel van den Berg, a virtualization consultant from the Netherlands

Frustrated VMware pros rejoice! The vendor has reportedly decided to do away with its so-called vTax. Sources say VMware will change back to a physical CPU-based licensing model when it announces the release of vSphere 5.1 at VMworld next week.

Introduced with vSphere 5, the

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virtual RAM (vRAM) licensing model came under fire for setting a maximum amount of vRAM per license, based on the specific vSphere edition. The scheme ultimately made it more expensive for some customers to upgrade their licenses, and opened the door for dissatisfied VMware shops to look at competitors’ products, such as Microsoft’s Windows Server 2012.

“There hasn’t been a significant pull by enterprises saying 'give me a vCloud!'”
James Staten, analyst for Forrester Research

By introducing an evaluation service for its vCloud offerings, VMware hopes to drum up interest among enterprises, where adoption rates have lagged. The program will launch in the next few weeks and allows customers to spin up publicly hosted instances of vCloud Director through the vcloud.vmware.com portal.

The price of the service has some shops balking at the idea, however, especially considering Amazon offers a similar service free for a year. Time will tell whether the eval service will catch on. In the meantime, many pros have their sights set on next week’s VMworld for further vCloud information.

“[The two previous] slogans had cloud in the tagline, while this year's conference fails to mention it. It would be a funny coincidence if this year's big announcement is a VMware public cloud offering.”
Christian Mohn, senior infrastructure consultant for EVRY Consulting in Bergen, Norway

Speaking of VMworld 2012, as thousands of IT pros prepare to descent on San Francisco next week, the rumor mill has been working overtime. There’s plenty of speculation as to whether more information will be released about Project Zephyr, the vendor’s purported public cloud Infrastructure as a Service.

As Mohn points out, the past two VMworld slogans both referenced the cloud. Could this be the year when the cloud takes center stage? They do say third time’s the charm…

“Like Apple, VMware always does a great job of keeping secrets about what they will announce and when they will announce it.”
David Davis, virtualization evangelist at TrainSignal.com

VMware has yet to comment on Project Zephyr, which is not out of character for the virtualization giant.

Seeing as this is his fifth VMworld, Davis has an idea of what you can expect at this year’s conference. Given VMware’s recent acquisitions, such as Nicira, he predicts there will be announcements about a move toward its version of the software-defined data center, as well as further information surrounding its vCloud offerings.

Keep up with the latest VMworld news as it unfolds by checking out our conference coverage page.


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