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VMware Faces Competition For Virtualisation Market

Quoting from

"VMWare has done a great job of educating the market", says XenSource as it goes after what CEO, it claims is the 96% of that market not currently served by the competition. But VMware could still benefit from in-fighting.

Open Source-based developer, Xen - which already claims relationships with Linux vendors, as well as with Microsoft, is finally ready to release its XenEnterprise server virtualisation platform. And it ships next week.

Making the announcement at the LinuxWorld Conference & Expo in San Franciso, XenSource, CEO, Peter Levine made the standard platitudes regarding ease of use and 'hunger' in the market.

According to one report, he demonstrated the first by drinking a few beers and carrying out an XenEnterprise installation. He demonstrated the latter with figures taken from a Thomas Weisel Partners research report that states that only 6 percent of the available market for virtualisation is being served.

As well as shipping as part of Novell's SuSe Linux Enterprise 10, the virtualisation platform also has support from Microsoft, which announced in July that it, "…will cooperate on the development of technology to provide interoperability between Xen-enabled Linux and the new Microsoft Windows hypervisor technology-based Windows Server virtualisation." In short, this means that Microsoft's forthcoming Longhorn server operating environment will support Xen-base products such as XenEnterprise.

One fly in the XenEnterprise story, however, is that major Linux vendor (with some support from market analysts) Red Hat is not ready to ship Xen project-related product (including XenEnterprise) in its Red Hat Enterprise Linux offering.

In press statement which contained more in the way of lines to read between than lines to be taken as read, Red Hat attempted to clarify a reports that it had stated that Xen was not ready to ship. "We are encouraged by the rapid progress being made, and expect the technology to be sufficiently improved, hardened and tested so that it will soon be included in the Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtualization platform (our current estimate is approximately the end of 2006). Our commitment to the Xen community project is unwavering, as is our commitment to deliver reliable, production quality code to customers. We will ship Xen virtualization when it is fully ready for mission-critical enterprise customer deployment, but not before."

Some reports from LinuxWorld claim, in fact, that Red Hat could actively steer consumers towards VMware in the event that the Xen-based virtualisation integration within Linux wasn't completed to its satisfaction.

Whether this is Red Hat's attempt to undermine Novell's much-trumpeted Linux Enterprise release, or a straightforward and simple piece of intelligence to consumers will come out in the wash. In the meantime, any in-fighting that includes major Linux players plus a Microsoft tie-in can only serve (and not just virtually) to bring smiles to the faces of EMC, the owner of VMware.

Read or comment on the original, here.


Published Monday, August 21, 2006 6:35 AM by David Marshall
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