BARCELONA: VMware has unveiled several new and updated products and services at its VMworld Europe conference, aimed at extending its vision for a hybrid cloud future driven by the software-defined data centre.
During his keynote address, VMware chief executive Pat Gelsinger announced additions to the firm's cloud management portfolio, now rebranded as vRealize suite.
He also revealed a new end-user compute option called Horizon Flex that supports BYOD by allowing virtual desktops to be deployed on Mac and PC endpoints, and upcoming updates to key parts of the firm's platform, including beta versions of vSphere 6.0 and Virtual SAN (VSan) 2.0.
The announcements are all about "accelerating the journey towards the software-defined data centre", according to Gelsinger, but he warned that infrastructure is not an end in itself.
"Infrastructure exists for the purpose of building apps. No-one builds infrastructure for its own sake, it's all about apps and the capabilities they bring," he said.
Gelsinger also announced an expansion of VMware's vCloud Air hybrid cloud ecosystem with a German data centre, along with a new technology partner for its EVO:RAIL infrastructure platform in the shape of HP.
VMware claimed that it has been adding a new location for vCloud Air (formerly vCloud Hybrid Service) every month since its inauguration, and is topping this off with the announcement of a second European data centre to provide public cloud resources.
Located in Germany, the facility is due to come on-stream in the first quarter of 2015 to supplement the London data centre that opened for business in July.
The addition of HP as a hardware partner for its EVO:RAIL infrastructure platform is another feather in VMware's cap, as it adds the number one global server vendor to a list of backers that already includes Dell, EMC, Fujitsu and Supermicro.
VMware also announced that it is expanding access to a beta programme designed to provide customers with access to cloud resources with just the swipe of a credit card. Announced as a beta at in August, vCloud Air Virtual Private Cloud OnDemand is due to be available in North America and Europe from November.
Meanwhile, VMware expanded its vRealize cloud management suite with vRealize Operations, an updated version of what was formerly vCenter Operations Manager, plus vRealize Code Stream and vRealize Air Compliance.
Of these, vRealize Code Stream is designed to provide continuous delivery capability for developers working with VMware infrastructure, enabling frequent, reliable software releases while reducing operational risks, the firm said.
Currently in beta, vRealize Air Compliance is a compliance tool delivered as software-as-a-service, and designed to help VMware customers assess their vSphere environment against a variety of security and regulatory requirements.
VMware first announced the vRealize name at VMworld in San Francisco in August. Confusingly, the suite comprises a number of existing and renamed products that combine VMware's cloud automation, cloud operations and cloud business management tools into a single offering that delivers "unified management across physical, virtual and the cloud", according to Gelsinger.
Finally, VMware Horizon Flex expands the firm's Horizon end-user computing portfolio with the ability for IT departments to provision Mac and Windows users with centrally managed virtual desktop instances onto the user's own computer, as part of the BYOD trend.
Described by Gelsinger as providing "a secure container for offline use", Horizon Flex can be used to provision a virtual desktop for customers, contractors or remote employees through the corporate network or via a USB drive, according to VMware.
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