VMware’s getting old, get over it!

Person with walker

VMworld 2012, the annual celebration of virtualization that took place in San Francisco this week, just wasn’t that exciting. What does it tell you when the biggest round of applause (aside from the ovation for outgoing CEO Paul Maritz) was for the repeal of the unpopular VRAM licensing change, not for any of the technologies demonstrated?

To be fair, much of the news — the repeal of the VRAM tax, the announcement of vCloud Suite, leaked ahead of time. But something more is going on as Jerome Wendt, president and lead analyst of DCIG, a storage consultancy, recounted in his post-show blog, “the maturation of virtualization begins right here right now.”

At first Wendt was concerned about the lack of pizzazz:

… this year something unexpected happened. VMware failed to deliver the earth shattering, mind altering announcements in virtualization that had become almost common place at past events. Yes, VMware and its partners still announced new products and innovations that businesses and techies want and look forward to hearing about every year.

But, after some back and forth, he decided that this was a good thing. What corporate buyers want is stability and measured improvements — not big bang, revolutionary changes every time they turn around. And certainly not flashy features that impress when they work but tend to crash and burn. That old joke about not trusting any Microsoft product before release 3 isn’t really a joke, if you get my drift. As Wendt wrote:

At at the end of the day, this lack of excitement or earth shattering announcements events may be exactly what users and the business world at large have been waiting to occur. Nothing is worse than being [convinced] you should buy or implement a technology and then three or four weeks pass and then another technology that is ten times better is released.

VMware, founded in 1998, has been around long enough now, and has enough legacy customers, that it must get that. It also has a new CEO — Pat Gelsinger, formerly of EMC and Intel, who presumably understands that for VMware, like Microsoft (and IBM and Oracle etc. ) stability, not glitz, can be a good thing.

Feature photo courtesy of Shutterstock user LeventeGyori


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