Role Reversal: VMware Now Raining On Microsoft's Virtualization Parade


As Microsoft gears up to release Windows Server 2012 and Hyper-V version 3, VMware is taking the opportunity to engage in some pre-launch criticism of the features and functionality it will include.

Windows Server 2012 is widely expected to arrive this fall, and Hyper-V is getting a major upgrade. In the Windows Server 2012 "release candidate", which Microsoft unveiled in late May, Hyper-V virtual machines support up to 64 virtual processors, 1 Terabyte of RAM, and up to 64 terabytes per each virtual hard disk, Jeff Woolsey, Microsoft's program manager for Windows Server virtualization, told CRN in an email.

VMware, which used to turned the other cheek to Microsoft's server virtualization trash talking, is now pointing out that Microsoft has a tendency to talk about unreleased products as if they are already available.

[Related: Fed-Up VMware Fires Back At Microsoft's Virtualization Trash Talk]

"Hyper-V has been 'around the corner' for seven years now," VMware Steve Herrod told CRN in an interview last week. "Hyper-V v3 isn't shipping yet and they've been talking about it for a year and a half."

For years, Microsoft has focused on cost comparisons, but in VMware's view, these are selective calculations that do not account for the full operational costs of Hyper-V.

"They beat on the cost perspective time and time again. But, people are really seeing it’s the operational cost; it’s the total cost of actually running this that you need to be thinking about," Herrod said.

In May, VMware published results of a side-by-side test from research firm Principled Technologies that showed that the combination of vSphere and vCenter Site Recovery Manager costs less to operate than Hyper-V and System Center.

In Hyper-V v3, Microsoft has significantly closed the feature/functionality gap with vSphere, one virtualization solution provider told CRN. However, he does not put much stock in Microsoft's comparisons when it comes to factors such as maximum number of VMs per host and logical cores per host.

"None of that really matters in the real world today -- how many customers are actually deploying single hosts which have anywhere close to 160 CPU cores? Pretty close to zero from what I can see," said the source, who requested anonymity to avoid harming his partnerships with both vendors.

NEXT: Will This Hyper-V Give VMware Headaches?