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Microsoft still harping on last year's VMware ESX bug

Imagine seeing a car commercial where the announcer said, “Sure, the car doesn’t have air conditioning, a radio or a trunk, but at least it doesn’t spontaneously explode!”

Would that make you want to buy that car? Of course not. But that’s the approach Microsoft has taken in the latest round of its feud against VMware.

You may remember the VMware ESX 3.5 Update 2 bug, which wreaked havoc on users. They couldn’t reboot virtual machines or run VMotion. And Update 3, meant to fix the problem, caused some VMs to uncontrollably reboot. In a new blog post, Hyper-V program manager Jeff Woolsey criticizes VMware for this incident, which happened more than a year ago:

While the initial Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V release didn’t provide Live Migration … it didn’t include two days of potential downtime and virtual machines unexpectedly rebooting either.

That’s not exactly a winning sales pitch. The customer takeaway from that sentence is, “VMware screwed up big time, and Microsoft is a latecomer without advanced features.” Neither vendor comes out smelling like roses on that one.

The kicker is, Microsoft has added Live Migration — its answer to VMotion — in Hyper-V R2. Why not focus on that instead of belatedly kicking VMware when it’s down?

One commenter wrote to Woolsey that constantly harping on the ESX bug “makes you look petty,” and another questioned Woolsey’s job: “I thought the role of a principal program manager was to promote their product?”

Personally, I could listen to Microsoft and VMware bicker all day. It’s entertaining and provides great blog fodder. But some users are getting sick of it, and if I were in their shoes, I probably would be too.

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Typical Microsoft. Point out any shortcomings in competitors to direct people away from any issues that might exist in their own products. Scare tactics. They better be careful because there are plenty of Microsoft product issues that could be brought to light. In fact read any security newsletter, newsgroup, blog or forum. Problems with their products are all over it.