took the cover off its updated cloud management portfolio. The update includes enhancements to the management products released recently as part of the vCloud Suite.
At the same time, VMware is introducing a new product to the suite, the vCloud Automation Center 5.1, and is updating the VMware IT Business Management Suite to automate management while empowering IT to govern services across multiple, heterogeneous clouds.
"Businesses of all sizes are leveraging a decade of virtualization investments to transform IT through the software -defined data center," said Raghu Raghuram, executive vice president of cloud infrastructure and management at VMware. "VMware's cloud management offerings fundamentally recast management for the cloud era, allowing customers to operate at cloud scale and begin to act as brokers of IT services to the business."
The Cloud Scramble
Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, told us VMware isn't anywhere near done inciting change in the data center. Of course, VMware is not without its detractors.
"Among the biggest knocks against the company, rivals emphasize VMware's tendency to focus more on infrastructure than it does on system-level concerns," King said. "The implication is that the company's solutions are most appropriate for big picture strategizing than they are the common, nuts and bolts issues that data center staff and management face every day."
King said there is some truth to that, but points to the fact that system vendors and related players, including Microsoft and Citrix, are attempting to reposition themselves and their solutions for cloud computing market opportunities. This, he said, makes sense from a practical perspective since the cloud tends to obscure much of the competitive positioning vendors have relied on for years.
VMware Seeks Disruption
"The new cloud management enhancements suggest VMware has a substantially different -- and disruptive -- plan in mind," King said. "Not only do its new solutions significantly improve the vCloud Suite's abilities to manage essential cloud functions and processes but they also extend its capabilities to deeper system- and service-level processes, including performance, capacity and configuration management."
What's more, King said, the new offerings find VMware substantially extending its support for and influence in a widening, heterogeneous range of hypervisors, hybrid cloud environments and packaged and custom applications. He expects the new cloud management additions to find a warm welcome and strengthen the company's position in the cloud computing market.
"At the same time, these offerings serve notice to those attempting to paint VMware into a small, restricted corner of the infrastructure market," King said. "From the looks of its updated vCloud Suite and other solutions, VMware is ready to play a serious role in the future of cloud computing and emerging software-defined data centers. How ready some of the company's competitors are for that future remains to be seen."