VMware takes cue from Amazon with new OpenStack framework

VMware's latest open source play consists of a new cloud framework "exposing developer-friendly, Amazon-style set of APIs."


SAN FRANCISCO---VMware has been keenly focused on the software-defined datacenter path for the last few years, but now the virtualization giant is honing its interests around OpenStack.

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Edward Hsu, director of product marketing at VMware, told ZDNet via telephone last week VMware first coined the term software-defined datacenter roughly two years ago.

"As a technology, it starts off like what we did for server virtualization,” Hsu reflected. He specified the fundamental difference between putting intelligence in the hardware versus software is the level of automation.

"New ways of managing environments have become possible, and we’re looking to extend that to networking and storage,” Hsu posited.

Customers like vendor-neutral APIs for their developers, but they want to be able to run it on rock-solid infrastructures their IT departments are already familiar with, added Dan Wendlandt, director of product management for OpenStack at VMware.

Thus, the key introduction at VMworld this year is VMware-integrated OpenStack in beta, described by Wendlandt as an open source cloud framework "exposing developer-friendly, Amazon-style set of APIs."

"New ways of managing environments have become possible, and we’re looking to extend that to networking and storage,” Hsu posited.

Touted by Wendlandt that VMware was one of the largest contributors to OpenStack in the last year, the goal for this platform is to make it very simple for companies with core VMware capabilities to be able to offer APIs to internal development teams.

Based on the OpenStack Icehouse release, VMware for OpenStack integrates OpenStack APIs and tools into both VMware’s cornerstone vCloud Suite Infrastructure-as-a-service and vSphere platforms.

VMware has already been testing its OpenStack deployment with a small test pool. Starting at VMworld, customers can apply for beta testing access. But VMware reps couldn’t provide further details about general availability.

The vCloud Suite itself is getting an upgrade. Version 5.8 consists of increased scalability for protection and recovery capabilities, improved support for next-gen big data apps (i.e. those based on Hadoop 2 distributions, etc.), and provisioning for NSX firewall and routing services. VMware said it will be available "within the next quarter."


VMware is also sprucing up its NSX network virtualization and security platform for software-defined datacenters. Version 6.1 is designed to support provisioning NSX Distributed and Edge Firewalls, creating stretched application tiers across multiple datacenters, optimized resource scaling, and setting up a high-bandwidth uplink connection to the physical network and provides active-active redundancy at the network virtualization edge;

Finally, VMware unveiled the vRealize Suite, an aggregation of all of VMware’s management products licensed to enable customers looking to extend vCloud experience to Hyper-V public cloud and non-VMware cloud environments with the same tools and interfaces for managing entire infrastructures.

The vRealize Suite can be shipped through one of two delivery models: software on-premises and as-a-Service. On-premises is actually already available while as-a-Service will follow later this year.

Images via VMware