Feeds

VMware employs Stage Manager

Turn that SAP upgrade into a virtual headache

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

VMware this week let loose yet another management product, which pushes the virtualization specialist deeper into the data center. Say 'hello' to the beta of VMware Stage Manager.

The Stage Manager code puts a virtual spin on the lengthy, often complicated process of installing, testing and rolling out new applications. According to VMware, customers can now perform these tasks in a very methodical way using virtual servers rather than physical machines to replicate and test their production gear. In so doing, customers not only save money on hardware but also create more realistic copies of their production systems, which should lead to smoother upgrades and installations.

VMware's Melinda Wilken proved her skills as a director of marketing to us by explaining Stage Manager in some high-falutin' terms. As we understand it, the software brings in a new world of automation, solution enablement, service acceleration and process streamlining.

More practically, perhaps, Stage Manager has the potential to make thrusting Exchange 2008 or SAP's latest code explosion onto your data center a bit easier. Rather than setting up and maintaining armies of "shadow instances" to deal with, say, the SAP roll out, customers can create virtual replicas of different hardware and application pairings. Through a slick GUI, VMware's software guides admins through every stage of this process, moving apps from the integration, test, staging and - fingers crossed - user acceptance phases.

The savings from lower hardware costs prove obvious with this type of approach, although VMware's application consistency idea deserves more explanation.

As Wilken sees it, customers will set up their shadow instances with the best of intentions, hoping to keep the systems as exact replicas of production boxes. Over time, however, Joe forgets to install a patch, while Bob adds a crucial upgrade only to the production boxes and Tim fine-tunes his new porn search engine on that IBM WebSphere shadow unit that everyone has ignored.

VMware claims to add more structure and ease to all this through Stage Manager. If you want the shadow machine to catch up to a production machine, just wrap the production software up in a virtualized container and install it on the test system. That's one or maybe two clicks of easiness. Hurrah.

(There are a couple shots of the GUI here and here.)

The Stage Manager code builds on VMware's efforts to win over admins and developers in a major way. The company, for example, has Lab Manager, which adds a similar virtual wrapper to the code development process.

While VMware is doing all this, Microsoft is coming to market with, er, marketing. Redmond this week said that virtualization is very, very important and even plans to do something about it later this year.

How much does Stage Manager cost? Was it involved in the Heath Ledger death? Does it have an illegitimate child?

VMware won't answer any of these questions but did say it hopes to get a production version of the software in the hands of customers by the US Summer. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
'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
'Urika': Cray unveils new 1,500-core big data crunching monster
6TB of DRAM, 38TB of SSD flash and 120TB of disk storage
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
SDI wars: WTF is software defined infrastructure?
This time we play for ALL the marbles
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Oracle hires former SAP exec for cloudy push
'We know Larry said cloud was gibberish, and insane, and idiotic, but...'
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
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.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.