VMworld Day 1 Impressions

Perhaps my mindset is a bit different as I see things through the lens of a Commercial Open Source Company, but VMWorld 2011 seems a bit closed and single focused for my taste.  It’s not that VMware isn’t introducing incredibly interesting, innovative, and disruptive technology and products, it’s simply the fact that things are very scripted and the messaging is tightly controlled.

One such disruption that caused quite a stir was VMware’s Technology Preview of VMware vStorage APIs for VM and Application Granular Data Management.  It’s not often that you get cooperation from the likes of VMware, Dell, EMC, HP, IBM, and NetApp to create a new way to unify virtual and physical storage infrastructure.  Essentially, VMware aims to put to bed the age-old question of,”SAN or NAS?”  All I can say is wow, and I hope we see some of this “proprietary” work fall into KVM and XEN’s future.

Another fascinating, yet lightly attended session, centered on the coexistence between VMware vFabric and RabbitMQ.  As the AMQP protocol continues to gain steam, the possibilities of uniting Java and .NET cloud based applications is quite exciting.  It was refreshing to see VMware talk about .NET as they are clearly committed to Java via SpringSource.

I attended a vCenter Ops presentation and was overwhelmed by the attendance of VMworld participants.  It seems that while security is still a major concern within the Cloud, Operations and Monitoring is gaining some serious steam.  Without the proper Cloud Instrumentation, Eventing, and Impact Analysis, you cannot operationalize the Cloud.  In other words, it’s time for real Service Assurance for the Cloud (that includes virtualized infrastructures!)

In the end, it is clear that VMworld is a major draw as the hallways are crowded and the sessions are standing room only.  However, there is still much confusion about the role of Public/Private/and Hybrid Clouds and how to build them.  Orchestration, Monitoring, and Security remain hot topics and areas of much debate.  I dare to day I’ve heard the words, “OpenStack” more than once and people are seriously discussing the downside of vendor lock-in.

One final thought, I dare to say Day One of VMworld 2011 reminds me of when Microsoft was the Dominant OS Vendor and Linux was just beginning…but something “Open” is in the air.



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