Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2013. Read them in this VMblog.com series exclusive.
Contributed article by Lynn LeBlanc, CEO and founder of HotLink Corporation
Attack Conflicting Goals in 2013: Agility, Diversity, IT-as-a-Service, and Cost Containment
Virtual infrastructure agility is now core to many business models, elevated
from its origin as a vehicle of server consolidation and cost savings. Most enterprises have a large and growing
server virtualization footprint, now above 50% of all workloads, according to
Gartner. Not surprisingly, this rapid
proliferation and scale leads to a range of requirements to support diverse
At the same time, CIOs have strong business interest in evolving to a
service-oriented delivery model. While
cloud automation and orchestration technologies are supposed to abstract
disparate resource types and allow datacenters to manage and provision
platform-agnostic services, somebody still has to integrate, administer, manage
and maintain all those heterogeneous resources - each with its own native
management environment and unique skill requirements. These tasks are unquestionably complex and
labor-intensive. Mainstream adoption of IT-as-a-service depends on significant
virtualization management advances to address this endemic and escalating
In 2013, two mega-trends will accelerate as data centers pursue the
conflicting goals of agility, diversity, IT-as-a-service, and cost containment.
becomes the norm
Expanding virtualization deployments combined with VMware's premium
pricing predictably led to second sourcing of server virtualization platforms. Microsoft's
sustained investment in Hyper-V created a legitimate alternative to VMware
vSphere at a dramatically lower price point.
Cost containment, varied business unit and engineering requirements,
application affinity, and many other good reasons have already resulted in
significant deployment of mixed virtual infrastructure. With most VMware hosts running Windows
workloads and Hyper-V rapidly closing the feature gap with vSphere, the migration
from vSphere to Hyper-V will clearly escalate in 2013.
In 2012, estimates of multi-hypervisor adoption ranged from 40% to 70%,
depending on the group surveyed. In
2013, IT shops will accelerate deployment of heterogeneous hypervisors as Microsoft
Hyper-V further matures, VMware price/performance is rationalized, and early multi-hypervisor
projects are successfully completed.
focus shifts to the management layer
Tackling the challenges of holistic management of heterogeneous virtual
infrastructure will take center stage in 2013.
Management is the Achilles heel of implementing IT-as-a-service since each
hypervisor vendor has its own management console and exposes only limited
functionality through public APIs. As a
result, cloud automation and orchestration solutions require all the native
management consoles to function, creating a "manager of managers" operating
model. This approach is inherently complex
to deploy and operate. It simply will
not scale. Therefore, data centers will
look to a new generation of technologies to fill the gap.
In 2013, heterogeneous management solutions will be differentiated by
their levels of flexibility, integration and ability to seamlessly manage mixed
environments as effortlessly as homogeneous ones. Vendors like HotLink have built sophisticated
technologies to address multi-hypervisor deployments, providing a single point
of administration and integration and eliminating redundant native hypervisor
management consoles. IT managers will
look to next-generation virtualization management solutions, specifically
designed to streamline multi-platform administration and operations and provide
a scalable foundation for service-oriented delivery.
Agility, diversity, IT-as-a-service, and cost containment may seem like
impossibly conflicting goals today. In
2013, breakthrough innovation has the potential to eliminate fundamental
technical barriers and attack these conflicts head-on.
About the Author
Lynn LeBlanc, CEO and founder of HotLink
Corporation, has more than 25 years of enterprise software and technology
experience at both Fortune 500 companies and Silicon Valley start-ups. Prior to
founding HotLink, Ms. LeBlanc was founder and CEO of FastScale Technology, an
enterprise software company acquired by VMware, Inc.