Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Cloud The Internet Virtualization Technology

VMware: Hey, Other Cloud Services Exist 39

Nerval's Lobster writes "VMware has updated its cloud-management portfolio to support alternative tools, including Amazon's platform. That's a big step for the company, which for some time seemed to shy away from the idea of backing heterogeneous cloud environments. VMware's vFabric Application Director 5.0 is designed to, in the company's words, 'provision applications on any cloud.' That includes Amazon's EC2. The platform includes pre-approved operating system and middleware components for modeling and deploying those aforementioned applications, with the ability to use the platform's blueprints for deploying applications across 'multiple virtual and hybrid cloud infrastructures.' The other platform, vCloud Automation Center 5.1, enables 'policy-based provisioning across VMware-based private and public clouds, physical infrastructure, multiple hypervisors and Amazon Web Services.'" It's quite possible that this move is in response to Microsoft building similar functionality into Hyper-V 2012.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

VMware: Hey, Other Cloud Services Exist

Comments Filter:
  • I have yet to see a "cloud platform" that was much more than a collection of buzzwords.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Well, basically those "clouds" are just a cluster of servers running software which provides an interface where you can upload and run multiple VMs.

      So for example if you want to run a website, you create a VM with the web server and data, upload it to the cloud service, and then have it run one or more instances to service HTTP requests depending on the traffic at the moment.

      • by icebraining ( 1313345 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @06:42PM (#41601941) Homepage

        That's the Infrastructure-as-a-service offers. Then there's platform-as-a-service (e.g. App Engine, Heroku) and Software-as-a-service (e.g. Google Docs).

        Essentially, cloud means: we abstract and automate everything from this level down, so you don't have to worry about it and can focus on everything above.

        And yes, "cloud" is a buzzword for something that already existed. That doesn't mean the concept is bad or useless.

        • by oztiks ( 921504 )

          See what many don't get is IT pros around the would don't like their trade being categorised so easily. What "cloud" is doing is quantifying these layers.

          Quantifying the layer simplifies it. If something technical becomes simple then business-heads can understand it (end-to-end) and then what happens is bushiness people do what business people do, that is begin to remove the layer, streamline the layer, outsource the layer, etc. Cloud stops what used to be quite complex thing from being a long laborious cos

      • This is very naive. You only talk of virtual hosting as a cloud. That's a 2006 state-of-the-art.

        In fact, the GROWTH in cloud architecture comes as a transition of the traditional, Enterprise data-center. This is the next stage after the large-scale consolidation of Enterprise x86 computing onto a virtual platform for efficiency and cost.

        A cloud offers elastic capacity for compute and storage requirements.

        Ordering and provisioning are business/enduser driven, from a service catalogue.

        All policy enforcemen

    • by A Big Gnu Thrush ( 12795 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @05:59PM (#41601547)

      It's just a fad. Buying hardware, putting a Linux distro in the CD drive, installing, configuring, driving hardware down to hosting center, installing hardware in a cage, testing, driving home, and then repeated all this when something goes wrong or needs upgrading is much more efficient. Nothing will even compete with a Linux server in a corner / basement / under a desk.

      • I use the software service cloud for my personal and for work we have our DNS servers, web servers, load balancers, SQL servers, FTP servers all in the cloud. Works great, and has been an enormous money-saving option as our servers were at end of life.
      • Please the first fad were network computers. Same argument was made. The next was intranets. Same argument was made. After that AJAX web 2.0. Same argument was made. Now clouds! ... in reality they are kind of similar. You have a server and you have a client. The truth is I do not have to call it a cloud. An app hosted on a server is just that. Now facebook itself calls itself a cloud and so does amazon. In reality yahoo mail was doing that last century when it was hip to call it a portal.

        Yes it is hype wit

    • "cloud is not about clouds"
      "cloud means x"
      "no cloud means x+y"
      "yeah that's something we had before"
      "it's marketing on old ideas"
      "no, it's doing what we used to do, better, with newer tech"
      "oh whatever my old tech was just as good"
      "no it wasn't."
      "yes it was"
      "well now it's all cheaper and better"

      This horse is thoroughly dead.

    • by LordLucless ( 582312 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @06:38PM (#41601875)

      Amazon's offerings are pretty good. And yeah, their persistent use of acronyms is a bit annoying and confusing. It's not so much buzzwords though, as an attempt at branding.

      Firstly, if you're just mucking around, it can be cheap. Really cheap. If you're just working on a proof-of-concept, you can possible get a dedicated server for free, as Amazon's prices scale on use, and a test machine isn't going to get a lot of traffic.

      Secondly, it can be really fast. Because Amazon's physical hardware is already geographically distributed, you can do the same pretty quickly. If I have a properly setup application, and I decide I want a server physically located in Asia to reduce the latency to customers there, I can have it done in 10 minutes.

      Thirdly, its easy. It's got a steep learning curve, but once you're on top of it, backups, disaster recovery, scalability and a whole host of other problems are essentially solved for you.

      Sure, there's nothing it can't do that a properly configured and tuned geographically-distributed redundant cluster of linux boxes couldn't, but it's a hell of a lot cheaper, faster and easier than running such a cluster.

      • by XXeR ( 447912 )

        Great post, but I do disagree with this:

        but it's a hell of a lot cheaper, faster and easier than running such a cluster

        This is at best only true on a small/medium scale, but ultimately it really depends on your use case and how on top of your AWS bill you are. My contention is that once you get to the point that you're running thousands of large EC2 instances, you'd actually find it cheaper to deploy and manage servers in your own DC (or a colo).

        I'm sure the folks at Netflix will disagree with me, but considering the hundreds of folks they have dedicated to tooling and optimizing the

        • True, I should have qualified that statement with "in most cases". In reality, the vast majority of users will never need more than a handful of EC2 instances, and the sort of gains you can get at the small end from using Amazon's pre-built network is amazing. At the upper end, you'll have enough cash available that investing in that sort of talent and infrastructure in-house might be feasible.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          It's worked very well for us when we need to run a very paralleled simulation. We run about ten million Monte-Carlo runs per simulation, and being able to tap an arbitrary number of cores for a short time is a whole lot better for us than trying to build it to run for roughly 0.1% of the time and idle the rest of the time.But, we've clearly got an edge case -- looking for edge cases.

      • Sure, there's nothing it can't do that a properly configured and tuned geographically-distributed redundant cluster of linux boxes couldn't...

        It is a properly configured and tuned geographically-distributed redundant cluster of Linux boxes.

    • I manage a cloud with nearly 5000 VMs. In a class today we spun up about 350 on the fly so that engineers could have reference configs available to do their jobs. I'm thinking we'll hit around 6000 VMs by the new year.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    As vmware adopts ever more aggressive and unpalatable pricing schemes I'm not surprised that people are looking to cloud services.

    Vmware makes some nice software, but they've been heading towards the "Well, how much do you got?" or "Give me your checkbook and I'll let you know how much it costs" or simply "Oracle-Style" pricing.

    Glad they have some competition. The company that commercialized virtual machines is now facing the commodization of virualzation software itself.

  • Or is it merely "web application" virtualization?

    I was surprised to read the Wikipedia blurb on EC2 to find they supported booting Windows 2008 images, I had assumed it was an "app engine" for some kind of web serving, and not the kind of virtualization you normally associate with VMware.

    Does this mean that a company could theoretically run AD/Exchange from EC2? Skip over the usual hosting option and run it straight from there? I'm sure the pricing wouldn't be as good as a "pure" hosted Exchange solution

    • There is certainly "full-er" visualization, from simple Linux containers to full blown VMs.

      Both Amazon and Microsoft itself (on Azure) offer Windows VMs, and I don't see why couldn't you run Exchange there.

      That said, if your needs are fixed, there are probably cheaper solutions out there.

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        I guess it all depends on what you needed to do.

        It's not pretty, but I've seen Exchange 2010 with a small userbase run in what would probably be a "large instance". With a three year commitment plus upfront costs, it looks like that would run you about $4000.

        Even if you called it $8000, that's still not a bad price relative to what $8000 would buy you in terms of physical PC hardware, internet connectivity and stability and reliability (of infrastructure, not Exchange) over a three year period.

        A colleague

  • How about you update VMware Converter so it works with the current version of VMware ESXi Hypervisor?

    I wasted hours building a system just to find that VMware Converter cannot target VMware ESXi 5.1. Version 5.1 has been out for a month and still VMware Converter Stand-Alone is not compatible with it.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      How about you update VMware Converter so it works with the current version of VMware ESXi Hypervisor?

      I wasted hours building a system just to find that VMware Converter cannot target VMware ESXi 5.1. Version 5.1 has been out for a month and still VMware Converter Stand-Alone is not compatible with it.

      The VMware View 5.1 update has been a nightmare as VMware decided to replace the individual View Connection Server's tomcat java certificate keystores to a more centralized Windows 2008 R2 Certificate Server/Group Policy SSL certificate distribution and PKI validation.

      VMware made the change because, like it or not, that's what the lion's share of their Enterprise-sized accounts use to manage SSL certificate distribution and PKI validation.

      VMware's White Papers and documentation about migrating a VMware View

  • App Director (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    App Director is a pretty interesting product. It's rather different from other offerings from VMWare, but it's not a game changer and it's definitely not the future of the company. It's yet another product in the zillions that the company has. VMWare needs to focus. They seem to have lost a sense of direction since the hypervisors have become more of a commodity.

    App Director is a nice Flash-based GUI for Chef, which is really the engine underneath doing the heavy lifting. And no, it does not support any oth

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I think AppDirector and some of the recent acquisitions show an intent to have an end-to-end stack. The Hypervisor will always be important since it is foundational. By building out additional layers you could use VMware as a one-stop get everything you need for your datacenter solution (along with hardware obviously). I don't think anyone is there yet, but ultimately you would end up with a highly flexible data center as well as "hybrid cloud" solution so you could do things like build your internal shop o

    • by Ash-Fox ( 726320 )

      I disagree. They are effectively diversifying so no one product will destroy the future of VMware if it becomes unpopular. This is a good thing.

You know, Callahan's is a peaceable bar, but if you ask that dog what his favorite formatter is, and he says "roff! roff!", well, I'll just have to...