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Microsoft kindly offers VMware-to-Azure backup

Microsoft has a new offer for VMware users: agentless backup for vSphere VMs – to an on-premises target or Azure - made possible through a vCenter API. Redmond's been keen on offering cloud services to VMware users for some time: it already offers a disaster recovery service that preserves vSphere VMs in Azure and even runs …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Nov 2016
Vmware cloud logo

vSphere 6.5 goes GA, gains surprise powers to predict the future

VMware's quietly revealed that vSphere 6.5 is now generally available and therefore on-sale to world+dog. VSphere 6.5's had a long gestation. The Register understands an early version of the upgrade was used to run infrastructure for VMworld Europe 2015. A beta commenced in February 2016 and the update was then formally …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Nov 2016
cloud

Is that your television? Or a zero client running a virtual desktop?

Teradici's launched a new range of zero clients powered by silicon it did not design, a departure from its usual practice the company hopes will spread its PCoIP protocol far and wide. Teradici's meat and potatoes is virtual workspaces delivered as nothing but pixels: all the compute happens in the server and zero clients do …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Nov 2016
Cloud desktop

Amazon's cloudy 'WorkSpace' desktops-as-a-service gain a GPU

Amazon Web Services' (AWS') desktop-as-a-service “WorkSpaces” just grew up. And got all muscly, too: the cloud colossus has announced a new option to add 1,536 CUDA GPU cores with 4GB of graphics memory. The new “Graphics bundle” also offers eight virtual CPUs and 15GB of RAM, plus a 100GB virtual disk for users on top of the …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Nov 2016
Junghoon Lee. Image: Darren Pauli / The Register

Pwnfest drops a nasty surprise on VMware

VMware's rushed out a patch for the serious desktop hypervisor bug turned up at the Pwnfest hacker convention. CVE-2016-7461 is a critical-rated out-of-bounds memory access vuln present in VMware Workstation and VMWare Fusion. The bug scores a critical rating because it could allow a guest to “execute code on the operating …
Xen project hypervisor logo

Xen releases updates, but also has eight patches about to drop

The Xen Project has just issued two new maintenance releases, but before you rush out and install them consider that the open-source hypervisor also has eight new patches in the works. Xen announces new patches on its advisories page, but doesn't reveal details of the problems they'll address for two weeks. The gap between …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Nov 2016

VMware cleans up after Dirty COW's droppings

VMware's received an unwelcome deposit from the Dirty COW Linux kernel local privilege escalation vulnerability. As revealed in a new security advisory, “The Linux kernel which ships with the base operating system of VMware Appliances contains a race condition in the way its memory subsystem handles copy-on-write (aka “Dirty …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Nov 2016
FACEPALM

VMware stubs its toe again: NSX has another VM-flattening bug

VMware says its NSX network virtualisation product is growing fast … perhaps too fast, because it's again been found to have a nasty bug. Virtzilla struck trouble with NSX 6.2.3, which was first declared unsuitable for implementation and then pulled from distribution entirely. VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger described that incident …
Simon Sharwood, 01 Nov 2016
You didn't say the magic word

Rogue sysadmins the target of Microsoft's new 'Shielded VM' security

Virtual machine security is suddenly a hot spot: VMware's building a new product for it and has added new bits to vSphere 6.5 to enhance it. And Microsoft thinks it has found a new way to secure VMs. Let's do Redmond first because its new “Shielded VMs” are one of the headline items in Windows Server and Hyper-V 2016. As …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Oct 2016

vSphere has been moved onto VMware's slow development train

VMware has finally shoved vSphere 6.5 out the door, more than a year after it was deemed good enough to run VMworld Europe 2016, eight months after its formal beta began and the better part of two years since vSphere 6.0's February 2014 release. Why the wait? Mark Chuang, senior director and chief of staff of VMware's software …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Oct 2016
Container-ship

VMware waves white flag: vSphere, vRealize, VSAN dock with Docker

VMworld Europe Containers are docking at this week's VMworld Europe Barcelona shindig – with VMware supporting containers in its compute, storage and management product set (vSphere, VSAN and vRealize) for production use. VMware is seemingly taking EMC's approach to disruptive technology by disrupting itself by its own hand: witness EMC …
Chris Mellor, 18 Oct 2016

AWS has made VMware the Airbnb of the cloud

Apologies if you've heard it before, but Airbnb is bigger than Hilton or Marriot, but doesn't own a single building. Uber is bigger than taxi companies but has never changed a tyre or burned a drop of gasoline. And now VMware's new alliance with Amazon Web Services makes it (virtually) the world's biggest cloud without having …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Oct 2016

AWS has a lousy hybrid cloud story. VMware may fix that soon

VMware and Amazon Web Services are reportedly about to stage a public display of affection. Fortune reckons the two have been having intimate chats about the same kind of relationship Virtzilla has with IBM. That cloudy tryst sees IBM offer VMware's service-provider-grade-vSphere-as-a-service, the better to help VMware users …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Oct 2016
Virtual servers

HPE, Samsung take clouds to carriers

HPE and Samsung are getting together to give carriers a shove towards a more cloudy future. The two companies have announced a tie-up with a focus on network function virtualisation (NFV) and virtual network functions (VNF). The two are part of a whole, but subtly different: NFV refers to taking carrier-grade applications ( …
Cloud desktop

Desktop virtualisation kit-calculator goes open source

Virtualisation identity Andre Leibovici has open-sourced his desktop virtualisation (VDI) infrastructure calculator. Leibovici works for Nutanix these days, but his calculator pre-dates that entanglement having first emerged in 2010. The Register's virtualisation desk is satisfied it's not a Nutanix-centric shill. The tool …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Sep 2016

Double-dating VMware lover Tintri brings Hyper-V closer to its bed

Hybrid and all-flash array vendor Tintri is expanding Hyper-V support, extending its existing VMware virtual machine-aware facilities. Tintri pioneered VVOL-class storage admin for its arrays, meaning VMware admins could provision, operate and manage its hybrid flash/disk array storage, a long time before VMware delivered …
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2016
Speed

Going hyperconverged? Don't forget to burst into the cloud

Here’s a key benefit of that shiny new hyperconverged box you just bought: it’s supposed to speak the cloud’s language. After all, hyperconverged storage is sometimes viewed as a private cloud in a box, melding storage, networking and compute into a single package with the storage management happening under the hood. It …
Danny Bradbury, 22 Sep 2016
VMware project goldilocks model

VMware's secret security plan revealed

VMware has shown off a working prototype of “Project Goldilocks”, its long-hinted-at plan to develop a new approach to security. The new idea is inspired by the NSX network virtualisation product's ability to create network “microsegments”, isolated virtual networks walled off from the rest of the network in a “least privilege …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Sep 2016
Desktop as a service

Teradici's releases desktop-as-a-service-ware, as used by AWS and VMware

Teradici has taken the code powering desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) offerings from VMware and Amazon Web Services and turned it in products you, yes you, can run. The “Cloud Access Software” and “Cloud Access Platform” let users run up DaaS rigs. The first product migrates apps to the cloud. The second tool delivers them from the …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Sep 2016
Chap in suit in slingshot

VMware flings vCenter Server away from Windows, if you want

VMware has released vSphere 6.0 Update 2m, with the main feature being a vCenter Server for Windows to vCenter Server Appliance migration tool. vCenter is VMware's key management application and comes in two flavours. vCenter Server for Windows runs on Microsoft's famous operating systems and lets you manage VMs. VMware has …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Sep 2016
Quick fix - worker running while carrying a wrench

VMware Workstation's installer loads danger-junk, so patch it ASAP

Late last week VMware delayed the release of Workstation 12.5 because of a bug it felt needed squashing before the code went live. It turns out the desktop hypervisor doesn't have one: it has three. And all nasty. Two derive from a dud installer. The first means “some DLL files [are] loaded by the application improperly.” “ …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2016
PInwheel_galaxy

Is hyperconvergence about to take over the enterprise data centre?

The glamour news in data centres for the past couple of years has been all about all-flash arrays, with converged systems providing a growing backdrop. The flash arrays provided hot performance while converged systems (CI) led by Dell EMC's CPSD (Converged Platforms & Solutions Division – formerly VCE) and Cisco/NetApp's …
Chris Mellor, 13 Sep 2016
Burning money, photo via Shutterstock

VMware sells Digital Fuel cost control code five years after buying it

VMware has sold vRealize Business Enterprise and IT benchmarking solutions, the financial management bits of its vRealize management suite, just four years after buying it. Back in 2011 VMware was bullish on what was then a company called Digital Fuel. The press release announcing the deal VMware's then veep and general …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2016
VMware nutella

VMware's Virtual SAN to gain data-at-rest encryption

VMware's kicked off a new round of beta testing for its virtual storage area network (VSAN). Duncan Epping, Virtzilla's chief technologist for Storage & Availability, has blogged that VMware is “in particular looking for feedback on the following 3 features”: Software data-at-rest encryption Nested Fault Domains (FDs) for …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Sep 2016

VMware content to run a small and beautiful cloud, with friendly help

VMWORLD 2016 VMware's own cloud is now profitable and spinning out innovations the rest of VMware can use, according to Ajay Patel, Virtzilla's exec responsible for all product development and operations for vCloud Air. In the early 2010s VMware's cloud ambitions saw it pursue a strategy of a world-girdling bit barn build, albeit colocated …
Simon Sharwood, 01 Sep 2016
VMworld 2016

VMware's vDare: Build more complexity and silos, or virtualize more

VMworld VMware opened its VMworld 2016 conference asking its customers to “Be tomorrow,” a couplet that was introduced at the event's opening keynote with a performance of poetry that felt like the work of a slick self-help spruiker. But VMware might just be onto something here, because it knows that in not many tomorrows, serious …
Simon Sharwood, 31 Aug 2016

Dell's new story: Goldilocks and the three virtual infrastructures

Dell's decided the world needs something between roll-your-own infrastructure and converged infrastructure's insistence on controlling exactly what's inside a chassis down to the last screw. The result is something Dell's calling a “Validated System for Virtualization.” Like a converged system, a validated system will ship …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Aug 2016

VMware fixes 'split brain' caused by 'stubbed toe' of botched NSX update

VMworld VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger has characterised the decision to pull a version of NSX as “a stubbed toe” while defending VMware's engineering culture. VMware releases updates to many of its products about once every four months, mixing bug fixes and small feature upgrades. NSX 6.2.3 was just such a release but it quickly proved to …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Aug 2016
VMworld 2016

VMware goes back to its future with multi-cloud abstractions

VMware will apply its core skill – taming ill-defined pools of computing resource – to multiple clouds, in a new effort called Cross-Cloud Architecture. CEO Pat Gelsinger will shortly take to the stage at VMworld 2016 and explain that clouds have re-created the problem that server virtualisation solved so effectively in the …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Aug 2016
Monster virtual machine

Redmond reveals Hyper-V 2016 beats vSphere's RAM and CPU count

Microsoft has revealed the scale at which Hyper-V on Windows Server 2016 will operate at release and in so doing has leapfrogged VMware's scalability on headline-grabbing numbers. Microsoft's spelled out its scale here and we've referred to VMware's Configuration Maximums vSphere 6.0 (PDF) document for Virtzilla's numbers. …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Aug 2016
IBM_FlashSystem_V9000

IBM is now selling Spectrum Virtualize free from hardware

We heard IBM might be supplying a software-only storage product and it turned out to be true: Spectrum Virtualize can now be bought without hardware. Spectrum Virtualize is the renamed SAN Volume Controller (SVC) and virtualises IBM and third-party arrays, into single storage resources. It is bundled with the Storwize Vnnnn …
Chris Mellor, 25 Aug 2016
Bait

Microsoft baits new vSphere-to-Hyper-V switch offer

Microsoft is having another go at displacing vSphere. Redmond's new offer means that if you make the move and prove it to Microsoft's satisfaction, you will “Receive free Windows Server Datacenter licenses with Software Assurance and pay only the cost of Software Assurance”. On one level this is business as usual: vendors are …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Aug 2016
Red Hard Hat photo via Shutterstock

Red Hat goes to work on OpenStack network convergence

Red Hat has fully embraced OpenStack’s Neutron in a convergence-targeted virtualisation package. The Linux shop has released Red Hat Virtualisation 4, a package that subtly drops the reference to “Enterprise” held up until and including version 3.5 The intent seems to be for Red Hat’s virtualized Linux stack to become the …
Gavin Clarke, 24 Aug 2016
Leatherman

Maxta goes Freemium and enlarges VP count with new hires

Determined to stand clear of the noise in the hyper-converged market and forge itself a distinctive identity, Maxta has announced a freemium business model for its MxSP hyper-converged software. It has also extended its exec count with two VP hires and an internal promotion, envisaging surging growth. Herb Schneider, VP …
Chris Mellor, 22 Aug 2016
Face Palm D'oh from Shutterstock

VMware shipped public key with its Photon OS-for-containers

VMware has revealed an embarrassing mistake: the virtual machines it made available for its Photon OS container runtime included a default public ssh key. “A public ssh key used in the Photon OS build environment was inadvertently left in the original Photon OS 1.0 OVAs,” says VMware's emailed advisory. “This issue would have …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Aug 2016
Woman at gym lifts weights with arms. Photo by Shutterstock

HPE StoreVirtual gets low-cost ARM-powered variant

HPE has lowered prices for its SMB storage array customers by building an ARM-powered StoreVirtual array, eschewing X86 CPUs, and by bundling some previously optional components into an MSA 2042 product version. The StoreVirtual 3200, which has a starting price of just over $6,000, has two active:active controllers with …
Chris Mellor, 15 Aug 2016
hong kong fuey

Flipping heck! Virtual machines hijacked via bit-meddling Feng Shui

Security researchers at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam have found a way to subvert virtual machines using a combination of hardware and software shenanigans. The end result is the ability to flip bits in another VM's memory to weaken its encryption or mess with its operation. The attack, dubbed Flip Feng Shui, works by …
Iain Thomson, 12 Aug 2016
Virtual servers

Reds are infiltrating VMs, says new x86 virt Supernatural Square

Gartner's annual Magic Quadrant for x86 Server Virtualization Infrastructure has escaped into the wild, with a suggestion the Reds are taking over. One Red, Red Hat, has moved from the “niche players” category of the quadrant into the visionaries square, on the strength of “a strong tie between KVM adoption and OpenStack, as …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Aug 2016
Mangstor NX6320

Mangstor has unleashed an NVMe TITAN over fabrics array software

The NVMe over fabrics array access wave is gathering strength. NVMe-over-fabrics array flasher Mangstor has introduced its TITAN NVMe over Fabric (NVMf) target software storage stack. It integrates NVMe SSDs with Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) Network Interface Cards (NICs) to deliver accelerated application response times …
Chris Mellor, 09 Aug 2016
fail

VMware pulls buggy NSX release from distribution

There's egg on face down VMware way: the buggy release of NSX we reported reported two weeks ago turns out to be so messy VMware's decided to erase it from history. Virtzilla on Monday (US time) issued a Field Advisory in which it announced “NSX for vSphere 6.2.3 release has been pulled from distribution.” If you're in the …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Aug 2016

And now for a lazy Fri…d'oh! Two VMware patches just landed!?

VMware's just announced two significant bugs that need attention, sooner rather than later. The problems are “a DLL hijacking issue in Windows-based VMware Tools and an HTTP Header injection issue in vCenter Server and ESXi” and are rated Important, a step down from Critical. Whether they ruin your weekend is up to you. The …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Aug 2016
Elvis in Las Vegas. EDItorial use only - photo by Maridav via Shutterstock

VMworld 2016: What happens in Vegas ... could be just a desert trip

Sysadmin Blog VMworld 2016 is just around the corner. While some are giving VMworld a pass in 2016, things are looking up from earlier this year. If you don't mind Vegas in the summer, it might be worth your while. VMworld's return to Vegas marks something of a turning point for VMware. Over the past several years VMware has seemed to be in …
Trevor Pott, 03 Aug 2016

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