VMworld: VARs Endorse VMware Move To Join OpenStack

VMware has asked to join the OpenStack Foundation, a move that expands the virtualization giant's footprint in the cloud ecosystem and will help solution providers migrate their business clients to the cloud, channel partners said Monday.

Coming at the start of VMworld and following closely on the company's purchase of software-defined networking company Nicira and cloud automation and management company DynamicOps, VMware's move to OpenStack underscored its cloud momentum.

VMware, along with Intel and NEC, is listed on the OpenStack Foundation's board meeting agenda for Tuesday as an applicant to join the foundation.

[Related: OpenStack Cloud Platform Gains Momentum, But Rivals Circle ]

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Ron Dupler, CEO of the Kittery, Maine-based national solution provider GreenPages, a strong VMware partner, said that VMware's participation with OpenStack will encourage participation and innovation in the cloud.

"By being part of this organization, VMware provides leadership just by being a leader in virtualization technology in the cloud stack," Dupler said. "And anytime you can provide more customer choice and flexibility and create standards, it's good.

"They've been a leader in the development of virtualization in the cloud all along, and this will make for a more interoperable cloud ecosystem," Dupler added. "And with the Nicira and DynamicOps acquisitions, which are interoperable, they'll be a leader."

Paul Hilbert, owner of the Englewood Cliffs, N.J.-based Network Doctor, an MSP that provides private cloud services and counts VMware, Microsoft and Citrix as partners, agreed.

"VMware is the foundation of our cloud offerings, so we will build the other software solutions on top of VMware," Hilbert said.

"Everything runs through VMware, but inevitably, with all these other companies [participating in the OpenStack Foundation], it encourages competition," he added. "It probably gives us more of a reason to look to other OpenStack partners."

VMware, the dominant virtualization vendor whose products are commonly used in cloud hosting, represented a deterrent to the development of the OpenStack standard. OpenStack began as an infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) cloud computing project by Rackspace and NASA, and it has grown at a rapid pace with more than 150 companies participating in the project.

NEXT: OpenStack's Support Far Reaching

OpenStack has the support of many tech mainstays, including HP, IBM and Dell, all following its commitment to open-source development and the use of nonproprietary technologies in cloud stacks.

Rackspace turned control of the project over to the OpenStack Foundation in April. But, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud, not a foundation member, remains the largest cloud services provider. In addition, Citrix in April ended support for OpenStack and moved its own cloud platform, CloudStack, over to the Apache Software Foundation.

Eucalyptus, a private cloud stack provider with API compatibility with Amazon, in March partnered with Amazon to help its customers transfer workloads between private clouds and Amazon Web Services.

VMware leadership position in virtualization is well known, but the company's is also the preferred private cloud infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) provider for businesses by a significant percentage, according to a recent survey of 100 executives interviewed.