VMware Expands Cloud Management

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As increasing numbers of enterprises begin to make the move toward the cloud, the need for automation and management is becoming increasingly important.

For virtualization vendor VMware, their vCenter software is the cornerstone of virtualization management. Today VMware is expanding vCenter, with a new vCenter Operations Suite that combines virtualization and management features for cloud deployments.

"We're trying to build management into the system, as enterprises can no longer think of management as a separate piece for virtualization and cloud," Rob Smoot, Director of Product Marketing in the Management group at VMware told InternetNews.com.

Smoot explained that the new vCenter Operations Management Suite 5.0 release integrates performance, capacity and configuration management functions. He added that the 5.0 release enables users to see configuration changes and capacity considerations, fully integrated with the performance aspects, so all the data can be viewed in context.

"If there is performance degradation, you would know if the health of the system relates to a capacity shortage of storage for example, or CPU, and then you could add more capacity into the environment," Smoot said.

The change management integration also means that a datacenter can ensure their virtualization and cloud deployment meets regulatory requirements, including PCI-DSS, HIPPA and SOX.

The new suite also provides analytics to figure out when there is a problem that IT staff needs to be concerned about. There is also application awareness baked into the vCenter Operations Management Suite 5.0 release. The application awareness capability provides auto-discovery of applications, their relationships and their dependencies.

"This is giving you a view of applications so if there was an app server, web server and a database tier, that would all get automatically discovered," Smoot said. "You'd be able to verify that the app was protected with site recovery as well as verify that security and other policies were configured properly."

In addition to the vCenter release, VMware is also debuting the vFabric Application Management Suite. Smoot explained that the vFabric Application Management Suite contains an app director that does application provisioning. The vFabric performance manager is also part of the management suite, focused on application performance.

"Across all these suites, we're really just trying to simplify how management is done," Smoot said.

Fundamentally, VMware's new management suites are part of the company's broader vision of enabled IT as a service wherever possible.

"As much as possible we're automating management and we believe that approach is really necessary," Smoot said. "So instead of having, say, 50 virtual machines per administrator, you can literally have 1,000 virtual machines per administrator, and we're seeing some advanced customers move to that level of efficiency."

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.

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