Microsoft riles VMware with new VMware virtualization on Azure announcement

VMware is none too pleased about a new Microsoft offering enabling the full VMware stack to run on Microsoft's Azure.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

In 2016, VMware chose Amazon Web Services as its primary public cloud provider. In August this year, VMware also announced its Horizon Cloud platform would support desktop and application workloads on Azure.


In spite of that August deal, VMware and Microsoft apparently aren't best buddies. Microsoft's announcement last week that it's making a preview available of VMware virtualization on Azure isn't sitting well with the VMware folk.

Microsoft officials said last week that the new VMware virtualization preview on Azure will allow users to integrate VMware workloads with Azure services. Via the preview, users can run the full VMware stack on Azure hardware. Microsoft officials said they will deliver this offering "in partnership with premier VMware-certified partners" and general availability will happen some time in 2018.

Maybe it was Microsoft's positioning of VMware on Azure as a step toward migration to Azure that got the VMware folks riled. Or maybe AWS weighed in. Whatever the reason, VMware execs seemingly were none too happy with Microsoft's announcements last week, as I saw via a blog post on Petri.com.

VMware officials blogged on November 22 about the Microsoft announcement, making it clear that Microsoft's preview was developed without VMware's participation and "is neither certified nor supported by VMware." VMware also noted that no certified partner names have been mentioned as participants.

More from the blog post by VMware senior vice president of Product Development, Cloud Services, Ajay Patel:

"Microsoft recognizing the leadership position of VMware's offering and exploring support for VMware on Azure as a superior and necessary solution for customers over Hyper-V or native Azure Stack environments is understandable but, we do not believe this approach will offer customers a good solution to their hybrid or multi-cloud future."

Ooh, burn!

VMware Cloud on AWS was codeveloped by AWS and VMware and is supported and managed by VMware engineers, Patel noted.VMware's partnership with IBM for IBM Cloud for VMware solutions is likewise a VMware-sanctioned offering, Patel said.

It's been a while since we've seen a jousting round between Microsoft and VMware. The timing of Microsoft's VMware announcement -- just ahead of Amazon's AWS re:Invent show -- was surely no accident.

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