VMware holds such a commanding lead in the Server Virtualization Software market that its competition can't even get on the playing field, as was readily apparent in this year's CRN Annual Report Card awards. Microsoft and Oracle also have skin in the server virtualization game, but because of a lack of survey response, VMware ran unopposed in winning the category.
VMware's top ARC survey scores came in the area of product innovation, and the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company scored 95.2 in product quality and reliability. Survey respondents also gave VMware high marks in quality of field management, managing channel conflict and for its solution provider program.
Doug Smith, VMware's senior director of global partner strategy and operations, said VMware isn't resting on its laurels and plans to continue its product and channel program investments. "We're the leader in server virtualization and pioneered the category 13 years ago starting with VMware Workstation," he said.
VMware is planning to launch a Business Critical Applications virtualization competency this fall as part of its campaign to get partners up to speed on virtualization of more of their customers.
"People already have a good understanding of the value of virtualization. Now the opportunity for partners is to virtualize business-critical applications like SAP, Microsoft Exchange and Oracle," Smith said.
In vSphere 5, VMware boosted the performance and capacity of vSphere 5 VMs by a factor of four, supporting up to 32 virtual CPUs and one terabyte of virtual RAM, compared to 8 virtual CPUs and 256 gigabytes of RAM in vSphere 4. This boost is helping partners win additional business, according to Steve Kaplan, vice president of data center virtualization practices at INX, a Dallas-based solution provider.
"VSphere 5's performance, reliability and security attributes make it easier for enterprises to virtualize mission-critical applications," said Kaplan. "But VMware can also automate their environment with cloud computing capabilities, and that enables us to offer a more encompassing solution to customers."