Feeds

VMware's 'Calista Flockhart' hypervisor may or may not change the world

Thin, bony and mean

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The OEM Question

As far as we can tell, major OEMs look set to offer, say, one server each with the hypervisor embedded in flash memory. They'll probably do the same with XenSource when its embedded hypervisor is all polished. Dell has vowed to go diskless with its Veso appliance based on ESX 3i, while other vendors have yet to provide much detail on their upcoming hardware.

Microsoft tells us that doing the embedded hypervisor thing is a waste of time and has no plans to decouple its future hypervisor from Windows Server 2008, even though the hypervisor itself will come in at less than 1MB.

So, then, is ESX Server 3i really a big deal?

Well, yes, and curse you for staying so silent.

On the most basic level, VMware can use ESX Server 3i to shut up its loudest critics in the financial markets. The large investors have long wondered if VMware could keep its revenue going in the face of free hypervisor competition from XenSource and Microsoft. VMware is bravely saying that it could care less about the hypervisor's financial value. You give the sucker away and then do your best to sell management software around it. (VMware already makes 80 per cent of its revenue away from direct hypervisor sales.)

Better than that, you remove management basics from the hypervisor and force customers upstream. Gravy!

ESX Server 3i also seems like a big deal because VMware has moved ahead of the competition. The major OEMs have started to standardize on its embedded hypervisor, leaving XenSource to fight for a place at the table and Microsoft to tell everyone how wrong embedded hypervisors are. This reinforces VMware's status as an industry standard.

So, on the one hand, the embedded hypervisor means very little. It's just a slimmer bit of software that fits into the same, basic framework. The server vendors will experiment with how they use the code and the types of systems they ship. We doubt anything too dramatic or VMware-specific will arrive out of this work. And, in the end, you still need to run an operating system with this puppy at some point, which leaves Microsoft in decent shape.

That said, VMware can point to ESX Server 3i as another example of its power and focus. The software maker managed to line up all the major server players around the new code. In addition, it turned out the project in just a few months – something Microsoft can only imagine.

And now, customers will come to think of virtualization software – Vmware in particular – as a standard part of a server. You just turn it on and buy your support contract. Best of all, they're likely to buy even more gear now that the basic management bits and bobs have vanished.

Keep the revenue coming. (And the tips, damnit!) ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
It's Big, it's Blue... it's simply FABLESS! IBM's chip-free future
Or why the reversal of globalisation ain't gonna 'appen
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
Bitcasa bins $10-a-month Infinite storage offer
Firm cites 'low demand' plus 'abusers'
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
Pssst. Want to buy a timeshare in the clouds?
The Google dilemma — controller or spreader of knowledge?
CAGE MATCH: Microsoft, Dell open co-located bit barns in Oz
Whole new species of XaaS spawning in the antipodes
Microsoft and Dell’s cloud in a box: Instant Azure for the data centre
A less painful way to run Microsoft’s private cloud
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.