8. Microsoft, VMware Spar Over Virtualization
The software industry's rife with bitter rivalries, but none were more heated than the competition between Microsoft and VMware. While VMware has long been the king of virtualization, Microsoft's been fighting back with its Hyper-V technology built into Windows Server. Throughout 2012 the two vendors frequently engaged in claims and counter-claims to have the most cost-effective virtualization technology. Microsoft, for example, launched a VMware Costs More campaign early on, while VMware frequently fired back at Microsoft's competitive "trash talking." Microsoft is generally seen as having gained ground with the new Hyper-V technology in its Windows Server 2012 release, which offered expanded support for processors, memory and active virtual machines per host. VMware, in contrast, spent part of the year on defense after it took a lot of heat for its proposed vRAM licensing plan for vSphere 5 that customers said would boost virtualization costs. In August VMware backed off and dropped the plan in what was seen as an effort to stay cost-competitive with Microsoft.