VMware Enhances End-User Computing Capabilities With Improved Container Support, Better Mobility Management

VMware on Tuesday expanded its vSphere Integrated Container strategy with new management capabilities and a move to bring it into the open source realm.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based virtualization and cloud technology provider also introduced technologies to ease the deployment of OpenStack clouds and unveiled new enterprise mobility management software.

The enhancements to VMware's cloud and end-user computing capabilities were introduced at the VMworld 2016 conference, held this week in Las Vegas.

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Sanjay Poonen, executive vice president and general manager for VMware's End User Computing group, opened VMworld's Tuesday end-user computing-focused general session by showing the power of his company's WorkSpace One mobility platform, which combines VMware Identity Manager and AirWatch Enterprise Mobility Management.

WorkSpace One, which was introduced in February, provides users with access to all their mobile applications, Poonen said. Those applications are natively integrated with VMware's AirWatch software, giving WorkSpace One users single sign-on convenience.

WorkSpace One, which includes a native email application based on VMware's October acquisition of Boxer and provides the ability to collaborate on files from a number of applications including Box and Google, is used by every VMware employee, he said.

"This is the way in which we have transformed the workspace experience of all 20,000 VMware employees," he said.

VMware has now extended its unified mobile and desktop endpoint management and security technology to Windows 10, Poonen said. This includes configuration management and provisioning, software distribution, operating system patch management, and client health and security management, he said.

Poonen relinquished the stage to Kit Colbert, chief technology officer for VMware's cloud platform business, who introduced enhancements to the company's vSphere Integrated Container technology.

vSphere Integrated Containers were first introduced at last year's VMworld in response to a need to bring containers, which developers were using thanks to the growing popularity of Docker, into the enterprise, Colbert said.

As those containers move from test and development projects to production environments, they required monitoring and management capabilities that complied with business policies, Colbert said. "How do we extend this to next-gen apps running containers," he said.

Colbert introduced two major open-source projects related to its vSphere Integrated Containers, which itself was open sourced in April.

The first is Harbor, an enterprise container registry based on Docker Distribution with new VMware enterprise features such as user management and access control, policy-based image replication, support for audit and logs, and a RESTful API.

The second is Admiral, a built-in container management portal for VMware vSphere Integrated Containers that helps developers and application teams accelerate application delivery.

VMware already has over 1,250 technology partners working on vSphere Integrated Containers, Colbert said. Beta versions with the new additions are expected to be released soon, he said.

VMware's container news is significant for partners and customers, said Jamie Shepard, senior vice president for healthcare and strategy at Lumenate, a Dallas-based solution provider and VMware partner.

Customers are already doing a lot with containers, but often fail in their projects, Shepard told CRN. VMware is telling customers to use its ecosystem as a way to overcome container issues, he said.

"Trying to do containers on your own causes projects to bog down," he said. "With VMware, you are going to pay for using containers, but you'll get your projects done in time, and get full support."

VMware on Tuesday also unveiled VMware Integrated OpenStack 3, a new release of VMware's OpenStack distribution. Based on the OpenStack Mitaka release, the vendor said VMware Integrated OpenStack 3 features enhancements to ease OpenStack cloud deployment with simplified configuration and a one-step process for setting up the cloud's identity management.