VMware rounds out data center virtualization stack

VMware has added more components to its software-defined data center, updating vCloud, NSX and its OpenStack distribution

VMware has updated its stack of data center virtualization software, rounding out capabilities that allow an organization to run an entire data center operation and related cloud services as a single unified entity.

Among the new additions are components to the vCloud Air suite of software for running cloud services. The company has expanded its network virtualization software to provide more ways of moving a workload across a data center. And it has also released a new version of its OpenStack distribution for running cloud workloads.

VMware believes that the architecture best suited to deliver enterprise and cloud-native applications is one based on virtualizing organizations' compute, network, and storage resources so they can be delivered on multiple platforms, said Mark Chuang, VMware senior director of product marketing and management.

With this architecture in place, an enterprise can shift workloads between internal data centers and cloud services as well as make the most efficient use of the IT resources.

This approach, which VMware calls the software-defined data center, will spur $21.78 billion in sales this year and add up to a $77.18 billion market by the year 2020, Research and Markets has estimated.

VMware's vCloud Air is the company's answer to the success of cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services. The software lets organizations run their own IT operations as a set of cloud services. It also provides a unified base for multiple cloud service providers to offer vCloud services that interoperate with each other as well as with customer's internal vCloud deployments.

The VMware vCloud Air now has a number of new options for storing data, such as vCloud Air Object Storage for storing unstructured data. It features built-in redundancy, eliminating the need to make backups. The data can be accessed from anywhere in the globe as well.

The company also has a new database-as-a-service, called vCloud Air SQL, which provides the ability to store relational data on a pay-as-you-go model. Initially, vCloud Air SQL will be compatible with Microsoft SQL Server, but plans are to make it compatible with other relational databases.

The company has updated its VMware vCloud Air Disaster Recovery Services, which provide a way to ensure that operations continue even if the enterprise's data center goes offline. It now has a new management console for testing, executing and orchestrating disaster recovery plans.

VMware also updated its software for virtualizing network operations. VMware NSX 6.2 allows a virtual machine to be copied across a single data center, or even two different data centers, while retaining its networking and security settings.

NSX 6.2 now can recognize switches through the Open vSwitch Database (OVSDB) protocol, providing new ways for the users of such switches to segment their physical servers into smaller working groups. VMware NSX 6.2 also has a new central command line interface and a set of troubleshooting capabilities, called TraceFlow.

VMware says NSX is now being used by more than 700 customers, with over 100 cases being used in production deployments.

VMware vRealize Operations, which provides a single interface to watch the operational health of applications running on VMware, has been updated to include capabilities to find the best set of resources within a data center to place a workload. It also does rebalancing to move workloads around for most efficient use of data center resources.

Also on the management side, the company has updated its logging software, which is now capable of ingesting 15,000 messages per second. The software also now offers new ways to chart and search through operational data.

The newly released VMware Integrated OpenStack 2 is based on the latest release of the open source OpenStack software, which was codenamed Kilo and released in April. The new release has a load-balancing feature as well as the ability to automatically scale up workloads should they require more resources.

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