Stefan Hochuli Paychère, Founder & CTO, of Dunes Technologies, spent a few moments speaking with my colleague, Roger Sakowski, and I to help us understand his company's products, VS-O and VD-O. Dunes appears to be working from the point of view that a revolutionary change is occurring in the industry and Dunes doesn't need to offer ready-made links to the past.
It is our view, however, that this doesn't jive with IT decision makers strong focus on the Golden Rules of IT (mentioned in this post). These decision-makers usually try to evolve from one position to another rather than tearing things down just to rebuild them some other way. They, after all, are charged with keeping things going. Revolutionary changes would certainly appear scary from that vantage point.
Here is is a quick review of Dunes Technologies' products of and a snapshot analysis.
Quick Review of Dunes Technologies' products
Virtual Services -Orchestrator (VS-O)
- A management layer added on top of VMware Virtual Center and/or Microsoft's Virtual Server. Support for Xen-based environments is expected in the future.
- VS-O allows organizations to create or adapt any IT automated procedures. Plug-ins are available for VMware, proprietary VS-M, WMI, SNMP, Mail, JDBC, SSH and XML. More plug-ins are expected in the future.
- VS-O contains a library of all the basic actions and commands you can execute within each plug-in. These actions are then assembled into work flows to build advanced procedures.
- Dunes has created a set of work flows for different scenarios: provisioning, back-up, disaster recovery, maintenance and many more. These work flows can be used directly out-of-the-box and can be easily adapted later on to best fit your needs.
- A system of policies applying to any element (physical server, farm of virtual machines, group or single virtual machine) enables an intelligent and dynamic monitoring of the organization's IT infrastructure.
Virtual Desktop -Orchestrator (VD-O)
- VD-O provides companies with a virtual infrastructure the possibility to create and manage a complete solution of hosted desktops for their employees and/or customers. VD-O is a stand-alone application powered by VS-O.
- The product provides the following capabilities:
- Create and update Virtual Machine templates
- Create and deploy pools of Virtual Machines
- Manage users access rights per pool
- Monitor the usage of its pools (free vs used machines in a pool)
- Change the size of a pool on the fly (add or remove Virtual Machines from a pool)
- Schedule state changes of pools according to peak hours or seasonality
- Apply policies to automatically change the state of a pool (running, suspended, stopped or archived)
- Strengths - Focus on process automation for VMware or Microsoft-based virtual machine environments, to the exclusion of other types of virtualization.
- Weaknesses - Narrow focus on automation of virtual machine images which will tend to limit where Dunes can market their technology. Dunes' technology appears only to be friendly with established management frameworks if the organization is willing to build their own plug-ins. Dunes' technology, by the way, appears to have features that would be more broadly applicable. Dunes indicates that, being a small company, it must focus its attention in the places that appear to offer the quickest opportunity for a return on their investment.
- Opportunities - The market's increasing interest in server and client virtualization, primarily through the use of virtual machine software, means that Dunes just may offer the capabilities needed by some organizations.
- Threats - An ever growing list of competitors are offering a broad array of capabilities that overlap those presented by Dunes. IT decision-makers are likely to persuaded that their broad focus would address more of their organization's requirements and, thus, would be selected rather than Dunes.