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Microsoft takes aim at VMware and the cloud with System Center 2012

The skirmish between VMware and Microsoft for greater control over the virtualization and cloud markets is only going to get bigger and more intense in 2012. Microsoft has been encroaching on VMware's dominance in the server virtualization platform market for the last few years, with its best opportunity yet to come with Hyper-V 3.0 and Windows Server 8. At the same time, VMware has been refusing to relax with its vSphere domination, and instead has been moving into Microsoft's "territory" in the management space through acquisitions as well as its own in-house created applications.

Last week seemed to be Microsoft's turn to fire a volley, with the announcement of a new System Center 2012 suite offering. The solution provides companies with the ability to build and operate private clouds so they can deliver business applications across both private and public cloud environments. While the software is currently only a release candidate, it does set the tone and make clear where Microsoft intends to take things.

System Center 2012 integrates eight separate components into a single unified solution, incorporating Virtual Machine Manager, Operations Manager, Configuration Manager, Data Protection Manager, Service Manager, EndPoint Protector, App Controller, and Orchestrator. That, according to Microsoft, helps streamline installation and reduces the time it takes to deploy from days down to hours.

In addition to the technology that makes up the suite, and perhaps even more eye opening, was Microsoft's announcement of a more simplified licensing and pricing mechanism. Microsoft has been taking aim at VMware with regard to pricing for quite some time. Remember back during VMworld 2008 when Microsoft's www.vmwarecostswaytoomuch.com campaign hit the Vegas strip, only to backfire on Microsoft with end users and industry pundits? Again late last year, the Redmond giant went on the offensive after VMware's own pricing fiasco took place with the release of vSphere 5, when VMware's community of users were alarmed and upset with the pricing change.

...MORE

Read the entire InfoWorld Virtualization Report article.

Published Monday, January 23, 2012 3:25 PM by David Marshall
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