A while ago, I published analysis and commentary based upon VMware's announcement of vCenter Operations. The piece was cleverly called "VMware vCenter Operations." Catchy name, no?
The good folks over at VMware took umbrage at some of my comments and decided to reach out to me to "bring me up to date on what VMware is really doing." I was very thankful that they offered an opportunity to speak with an executive rather than just shouting into the phone. That, to me, is a much better approach than a call with a screaming executive. I've gotten my share of those over my years in the industry. I can honestly claim to have been yelled at by industry luminaries!
After speaking with Rob Smoot, VMware's Director of Product Marketing, Management and scanning through the product launch presentation deck, I found myself convinced. It is clear that some of my original comments were not totally correct.
I still believe, however, that my concerns about VMware's ability to actually manage all datacenter operations when Mainframes, UNIX midrange systems or IBM System I based solutions are still reasonable. VMware, however, has an answer.
VMware's product does the next best thing. It doesn't directly monitor or control all functions in a datacenter. It can, however, reach into the network management functions of almost everything by monitoring their management information blocks (MIBs) and by speaking to management products installed on other systems through adapters. VMware has provided a very extensive list of adapters that allow its vCenter Operations product to collaborate and cooperate with other management environments including:
VMware has also provided generic file adapters for SQL-based, delimited text, and fixed length text data sources. It has also provided field level adapters for Cacti, Ganglia/Hobbit/MRT, Perl Framework and a few others. Whew, I get exhusted just thinking about all of the work that VMware's team went through to develop and test these adapters.
After the conversation, I have a better understanding of what VMware is actually doing with this product, where the company positions it and have a new appreciation for the product. It's worthy of consideration.