I called for VMware to introduce an OpenStack distribution. People have consistently told me that I just don’t get OpenStack and that VMware creating a distribution simply didn’t make sense. I’d argue these same people just don’t get the needs and challenges of enterprise computing.
Enterprise IT managers are battling shadow IT. End users and developers are consistently selecting public cloud to meet the requirements of their next generation applications. Cloud aware applications have a place in the enterprise. While there may not be a need to serve several thousands of unicast streams of House of Cards, there are some serious cloud use cases. One example is an R&D group that has a need to vary workload sizes and types at will. R&D groups have the technical chops to program to infrastructure API’s. The ability to give what looks like unlimited resources to these types of users goes a long way to eliminating shadow IT.
The challenge that platforms like vSphere face is that the vRealize API isn’t friendly to the DevOps type of need. vRealize appeals to the needs of customers looking to provide application stores. If the only need were to deploy a LAMP or .NET stack from a catalog then vRealize is an ideal solution.
An organization’s desire for DevOps type of cloud management platform doesn’t negate the need for an application store type of environment. VMware Integrated OpenStack (VIO) aims to meet the needs of these customers. Not every customer looking to implement OpenStack is looking to save money on vSphere licensing. OpenStack meets the needs of a very specific customer use case.
As such, VIO is tuned for customers looking to augment their existing vSphere environment. VMware kept it simple so that customers looking for a legitimate cloud API to vSphere could do so in a supportable manner. VIO isn’t designed for a cloud provider looking to compete with HP or Rackspace (yes I said Rackspace).
Now, I still believe VMware is using OpenStack as a way to rule the enterprise data center. VMware highly recommends NSX, and I expect some pretty impressive integration with VSAN as a storage provider for SWIFT in the future.