VMworld US 2017 is in the books, and the VMware vision for IT strategy has been laid out. In the past, many have viewed VMware as the on-premises competitor to the public cloud providers. After all, VMware is by far the market leader in private cloud virtualization, and to date has had little first-party ties to the major public players. This year, VMware announced direct partnerships with Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, showing a coming-together of the major private and public cloud software vendors. VMware’s messaging is that the software-defined data center (SDDC) will be the future, and customers will have many choices for the right platform for each application.
The key message from VMware during the event was any device, any application, and any cloud. This shows their willingness (and a market necessity) for giving customers the choice on how they want to host and present their business applications. VMware’s hope is that customers will choose their software for access, management, automation, and security for all applications. Simultaneously, VMware wants to remain the preferred infrastructure platform for on-premises applications.
One of the most important announcements was that the long-talked-about “VMware on AWS” product will be a direct partnership with Amazon and will be delivered as an integrated AWS platform-as-a-service offering. This will drive quick adoption due to the ease of consumption and the comfortability afforded by being supported by both major providers. VMware now extends natively into public cloud, giving more traditional on-premises customers a quick way into AWS without being forced to re-platform applications. It also opens future possibilities for DR-as-a-service via the many third-party products which integrate with either VMware or AWS.
VMware’s newfound openness knocks down one of the largest hurdles towards a true software-defined data center experience: now customers can choose the right platform for each application and be less concerned with the inherent lock-in that most cloud providers have created in the past. It fits well with the messaging we have been using at RoundTower – although we take it one step further.
Instead of “any application,” we want to give our customers full choice for any business outcome. With the SDDC story coming together, our customers can choose the right way to build and present services with business outcomes in mind and not be limited by infrastructure architecture choices.
Many of the third-party vendors who presented at VMworld had similar messaging. Storage and backup vendors promoted products which can run on VMware or with native ties to the public cloud. Network vendors showed how their software was creating the possibility of a single network spanning from on-premises into the cloud. Security vendors showed that now more than ever, a strong security framework is necessary to protect intellectual property at every layer of the stack and across all platforms.
The possibilities presented by VMware, public cloud providers, and third-party infrastructure players are made possible by adopting a software-defined data center strategy. SDDC allows for the right business service to be built upon the right platform and presented to end users the right way. Customers can choose SaaS where offerings are available, on-premises cloud for traditional applications, or a seamless integration with public cloud infrastructure where a more on-demand consumption model is beneficial.
RoundTower stands ready to assist our customers in building the software-defined data center. Our platform combines traditional and cloud-native infrastructure engineering with a strong focus on security at every layer. With the major private and public cloud providers partnering to achieve the vision of SDDC, RoundTower is poised to help deliver the right cloud for the right device for any business service.