The Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV) suite will hit general availability Sept. 1, according to LeMagIT — which, for those of you who don’t parlez francais, means “The IT Mag.” Sept. 1 is the first full day of VMworld 2009, when VMware typically makes most of its major announcements.
RHEV marks a shift from Xen to KVM as Red Hat’s open source virtualization technology of choice, as senior virtualization director Navin Thadani said on last week’s edition of This Week in Virtualization.
(Shameless plug: Subscribe to This Week in Virtualization on iTunes!)
The suite is in private beta now, but Red Hat had been keeping its release date under wraps.
Red Hat’s attempt to turn VMworld into KVMworld is just the latest of several attempts to grab headlines during VMware’s show. Citrix dropped its free XenServer bomb at VMworld Europe in February, and Microsoft handed out its infamous “VMware Costs Way Too Much” poker chips at VMworld 2008.]]>
Acronym overload is an unfortunate part of life in IT, especially in virtualization. But that doesn’t mean you can toss them around willy-nilly without knowing what they mean.
I came across a great reminder of this lesson this morning on FMyLife.com, the website where people share the unfortunate — and often hilarious — events that happen in their life. (The “F” stands for exactly what you think it does.) “MrZhang” from Australia wrote:
Today, I had an interview with IBM. For a week I did extensive research and preparation for the interview. At first the interview was going really well. I was hitting all the marks. Then just as a final casual question she asked with a smile “What does IBM stand for?”. I didn’t know. FML
Of course, not knowing an acronym’s meaning won’t typically cost you a job at one of the biggest companies in the world. But it can embarass you in front of your bosses and colleagues … and maybe even your BFF.]]>
So why is VMware apologizing to Microsoft?
Because of a video VMware posted on YouTube (since removed), which showed Microsoft Hyper-V crashing while running VMware’s VMmark platform. The video also implied that Hyper-V crashes caused April’s massive TechNet and MSDN outages.
Two problems: 1) Hyper-V crashed in the video because it was running unsupported VMmark configurations, and 2) TechNet and MSDN crashed because of a spike in traffic surrounding the Windows 7 RC release. Conveniently for VMware, the video did not mention either of these facts.
And that really annoyed Microsoft’s Jeff Woolsey, the principal group program manager for Hyper-V. He wrote a scathing blog post that said “this isn’t how billion dollar companies behave” and chastised VMware’s Bruce Herndon for downplaying the video controversy as a “kerfuffle”:
A “kerfuffle” is going to the coffee shop ordering a mocha and getting a latte. A “kerfuffle” is getting your luggage lost at the airport. If the shoe were on the other foot, you wouldn’t be using the word “kerfuffle.”
Finally, on June 10, Scott Drummonds — the VMware employee who anonymously posted the video — apologized:
The video was a bit hyperbolic in its dramatization of Hyper-V’s reliability. Unfortunately, my intention to stir the pot with eye-poking banter has put my credibility and by association VMware’s credibility in question among some of you. … We will absolutely work our best to live up to the high standard you’ve come to expect from us. And when we mess up, we’ll be the first to address the mistake head on.
Apologizing was clearly the right thing to do, but for some, the move was too little, too late. For example, take “TimC,” who made this comment on Drummonds’ apology:
It seems like you needed a fair bit of prompting after the guy from Microsoft ‘first addressed the mistake’ by calling you on it. Are you ever going to truly come clean and publish a full description of your test environment? … If you don’t do that, I would continue to question how serious you are about this ‘apology’.
This whole fiasco has taken the Microsoft vs. VMware fight from the level of professional business competition into the realm of personal animosity. You’d have to think things will only get worse as Microsoft prepares to release Hyper-V R2 — and VMware prepares to stave off the biggest challenge yet to its market dominance.]]>
Hoff, aka “Beaker,” runs the Rational Survivability blog and has held high-ranking security positions at several IT vendors and other firms — albeit none as big as Cisco. They include Unisys, Crossbeam Systems and the WesCorp federal credit union.
His hiring at Cisco comes as the networking giant is making its move into the virtualization and data center markets with its Unified Computing System.
UCS aims to unite computing, networking, storage and virtualization, making the technologies easier to manage in a data center — all the while giving Cisco more complete control over said data center (which some IT pros are worried about). It will also bring Cisco into competition with VMware, its partner, which has similar plans for data center domination with vSphere 4.
But if Hoff’s previous blog posts are any indication, don’t expect Cisco to blow up that partnership any time soon. (Although he may challenge Paul Maritz to a sumo wrestling match if things ever get testy.)
Last month, for example, Hoff wrote: “In environments that are designing their next evolution of datacenter architecture, the integration between Cisco, VMware, and EMC are critical. … Don’t think that Cisco and VMware aren’t aware of how critical one are to the other.”
In a blog post announcing Hoff’s hiring, Cisco data center solutions manager Omar Sultan wrote, “I know Chris has the tenacity of a squirrel chasing an acorn, and I am personally quite pleased to welcome Chris to the team as I see he will add both depth and breadth to our efforts.”
In response, Hoff said he was “beyond psyched” to be joining Cisco. He’ll officially join the company Monday.]]>
These new products hold a lot of promise. But for now, the best application of mobile phone virtualization is to use mobile devices to manage existing virtual environments. The latest release in this area of the market comes from Hyper9, which yesterday unveiled its Virtualization Mobile Manager (VMM).
Hyper9 claims VMM — which was designed by virtualization expert (and TechTarget contributor) Andrew Kutz — is the first mobile manager that supports VMware, Hyper-V and XenServer. It also lets users monitor virtual machine CPU and memory usage and configure VMs based on server name or browser type.
The Hyper9 VMM is not the first and definitely won’t be the last entrant into this market. Just last month, expert Edward L. Haletky wrote about TouchTerm, a free iPhone app he used to fix a VMware ESX server while on vacation.
With VMware MVP, you could potentially have your business phone and your personal phone on the same device — even on different carriers’ networks. And Citrix Receiver lets you stream non-native applications on your iPhone.
Still, both of these products are far from hitting the mainstream. (Even VMware partners say MVP is, to quote one eloquent journalist, “way too new.”)
VMware MVP and Citrix Receiver mirror the server and desktop approaches to virtualization, respectively, and most organizations still have a lot of virtualization challenges to tackle on their servers and desktops before they move to mobile devices.
So for the time being, the ability to manage your existing infrastructure from a phone is clearly more valuable than what the sexier products from VMware and Citrix offer.]]>
Well, in the words of Lee Corso:
There are still quite a few people out there who don’t feel totally comfortable virtualizing everything. And they’re not all newbies who don’t know what they’re talking about.
Case in point: Joshua Corman, the principal security strategist for IBM, a company you may have heard of before. He made headlines at Interop when he told attendees, “I highly recommend you don’t adopt virtualization for any regulated project.”
Server virtualization makes it difficult for organizations to show regulatory compliance, especially when they’re regularly provisioning and deprovisioning virtual machines. And it opens up a whole new Pandora’s box of risks, especially when live migration and other advanced technologies are involved, Corman said, according to Network World.
And at TechEd last month, Microsoft product manager Edwin Yuen warned attendees about additional virtualization challenges.
“You have to do all the maintenance, management and control of [virtual] machines that you normally do [on physical machines],” he said.
Some users also have their concerns. Mike Mucha, the information security officer for Stanford Hospital and Clinics, told InfoWorld last week that a recent virtualization deployment has muddied the waters around his organization’s security decision-making process.
“Virtualization tends to be … led by the server team,” he said. “The server people are taking on non-traditional roles, making decisions about network architecture.”
But at TechEd I also spoke to several IT managers and systems administrators who said their servers are or soon will be 100% virtualized. And these weren’t at rinky-dink mom-and-pop shops. Some were large organizations in sensitive verticals like healthcare and government.
When they were telling me about this, I thought, “Wow, that’s pretty cool that you’ve done so much with virtualization!” But after reading what Corman said about virtualization security and compliance, I wonder if my response should have been, “What? Are you nuts?”
The truth probably lies somewhere in between.
Maybe some longtime virtualization users have found ways to secure their environments and show regulatory compliance. Or maybe some think they have and are in for a rude awakening. Maybe Corman is completely right about virtualization’s risks. Or maybe he’s spreading some good, old-fashioned FUD.
Should you consider and addresss the security and compliance concerns? Of course. But don’t let them stop you from realizing the benefits of virtualization.]]>