Maritz: Security improves and the role of the OS changes with virtualization

Maritz: Security improves and the role of the OS changes with virtualization

Summary: VMWare CEO Paul Maritz talks about the changing forces caused by virtualization, including the potential to improve security and the shift away from the OS as the center of innovation.


Is the operating system as we know it dead? And can this new multi-layered stack that VMWare CEO Paul Maritz spoke of this morning really enhance security?

Maritz, during a Q&A press conference after his keynote speech at VMWorld, addressed these issues and more. The bottom line is that times are changing. Technology is changing. Business models are changing. And, as Maritz said, those can be "very difficult waters to navigate." VMWare itself is a company that's also changed, adapted to technological innovations, economic forces and demands in business.

"One thing I have learned is that money can't buy you time," Maritz said as he spoke about the fast-moving pace of technological innovations - everything from a broad variety of mobile devices to new tablet platforms. "We no longer make our money from hypervisors. We make our money from data center automation."

During the session, Maritz was asked how this new approach would affect moving parts such as government compliance. He said there isn't a "single silver bullet" to address compliance but that VMWare is playing a role in working with the industry to allows them to "take the capabilities that have been built up and aid in government compliance, to apply it in a highly dynamic virtualized world."

Firewalls, for example, could become pieces of software that are associated with the various layers of the new stack, he said. The intent is to shift the security boundaries, to put them in logical places, instead of physical places. Does the security force need to be at the OS level or can it be in various parts of the virtual infrastructure level or other levels?

In answering that question, Maritz went out on a limb to say that security could actually be enhanced under this model, that "we can completely reverse" the security issue and "turn it into a positive moving forward."

As for his thoughts on the future of the operating system, Maritz clarified a statement he made during his keynote about the operating system. It's not that the operating system will disappear, he said. The bigger issue is where the innovation is occurring. It used to be that the innovation occurred at the OS level. The innovation now, he said, is in the virtualization later.

And increasingly, that means the OS becomes just another piece of the puzzle - no longer the driving force behind the power of computing.

Topics: Security, Emerging Tech, Operating Systems, Software, VMware

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  • Regarding the OS comment

    It's hard to not see his comment about the innovation occuring at the virt layer as anything but self-serving. The reality is different, I think. "OS" is defined differently depending on one's perspective. It's not hard to imagine that most OS's will include virt capabilities in the that an OS inovation or a virt innovation? I tend to think of the most important innovations happening at the API/application platform layer. In some cases those API's are distributed as part of the OS and in others not. For example, Google's API's are service oriented vs. being OS-oriented. Same goes for things like Bing maps from Microsoft. In the case of iPad, the innovation is occuring at the OS layer. Same with Windows Phone and, to some extent, Windows 7 and other PC OS's. Virtualization is ultimately very much a commodity. It will be available everywhere in a variety of forms. That's why VMWare is so screwed in the long-term.
  • RE: Maritz: Security improves and the role of the OS changes with virtualization

    I've always wondered how visualization will effect various security issues. I agree with @marksashton that VMware doesn't have a viable solution in the long term. Check out <a href="">income infuser</a> if you are looking to make money online.