Xen leaders leave Citrix to launch Bromium

The founders of Xen.org and the former XenSource- Ian Pratt and Simon Crosby -- will leave Citrix to launch a new company called Bromium that will address the "intersection of security and virtualization."

The founders of Xen.org and the former XenSource- Ian Pratt and Simon Crosby -- will leave Citrix to launch a new company called Bromium that will address the "intersection of security and virtulization."

It doesn't look like a big rift between Xen.org and Citrix, at least on the surface. Citrix applauded the two men and their new startup on its web site yesterday and wished its former CTOs the best.  And Pratt and Crosby are entreprenaurs at heart -- their former company, XenSource, was acquired by Citrix in 2007.

Bromium is operating under "stealth" mode and won't release product until the second half of 2011. But we do know the startup has raised $9.2 million from three key technology venture capitalists, including Andreessen Horowitz, and that its co-founder president and CEO is Gaurav Banga, a former Phoenix Technologies CTO. (Yes, the BIOS company).

Looks interesting, and anything these two brilliant technologists come up with is likely to be significant to the open source virtualization movement.

The Bromium web site detailed the mission a little bit but more (and the official launch of the company?) is expected at the Xen Summit in early August.

"Bromium is focused on the delivery of infrastructure solutions that permit enterprises to safely embrace two major trends in IT: consumerization and cloud computing. The rapid growth of new device types and consumer-driven device, application and network choices, combined with increasing mobility and the need for “anywhere, any time access” to enterprise data and applications, poses a significant risk to the enterprise. Similarly, the rapid adoption of cloud computing leaves enterprise data and applications vulnerable to attack. Bromium’s technology will permit the development of a powerful set of solutions to these problems and will help provide a more trustworthy computing infrastructure.

However it came to be, there are some in the Xen world relieved that the founders of Xen.org are now independent of a large proprietary technology company.

Citrix seemed to be a decent supporter of the open source Xen movement but there were rumblings from time to time that it exerted too much control over the direction of Xen, the open source hypervisor facing increased competition from the KVM open source hypervisor integrated in Linux and backed by Red Hat and Linus Torvalds.

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