Each year there is one event I look forward to more than any other – VMworld. VMworld brings together the leading industry innovators to share virtualization and cloud best practices, showcase breakthrough new technologies, get hands-on in the Labs, and catch up with old friends. This week in Las Vegas we're hosting the biggest VMworld to date, with more than 19,000 virtualization and cloud geeks gathered to push the industry forward together (I remember being shocked to see 800 people attend just a few years ago!).
The volume of news from the show is staggering. You can read some truly impressive announcements across the board here and replays of the General Session keynotes, including VMware CEO Paul Maritz’s vision for the industry and my own technology-preview session, can be viewed here.
I can’t possibly do justice to all of the amazing innovations, incredible customer stories, and just plain cool stuff going on at the show, but I did want to take a moment and highlight a few of my favorite moments so far:
Major Enterprises Pushing Ahead With the Cloud: with just about every IT vendor guilty of pushing their marketing collateral with cloud terminology, it’s no wonder there’s healthy skepticism in the market. So it was fantastic to see leading global brands talking about how they are gaining competitive advantage today with their virtualization and cloud deployments.
- Founded in 1932, Revlon is one of the world’s leading beauty brands, doing business in more than 100 countries on 6 continents. Leveraging vSphere and other VMware cloud technologies they’ve been able to take more than $70 million in cost out of their infrastructure, achieve a 300% increase in project throughput, and have virtualized 98% of all workloads globally (they literally have only 2 Unix servers left in their entire global footprint!). This has enabled Revlon IT to be much more responsive to the needs of the business, align projects more quickly to revenue opportunities, and be a true competitive advantage for the company. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZxZz1m8KKQ]
- The New York Stock Exchange is not only one of the world’s leading capital markets operators, they are also delivering specialized cloud services to the financial community. The low-latency, high-frequency environment places extreme demands on their virtualized infrastructure but they continue to push the envelope with VMware’s cloud infrastructure technologies. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pyYwo6AZ7_I]
- We all know Southwest Airlines for their low fares and great customer service. But as the largest domestic carrier in the US, more than 85% of their revenue is driven through the web. vFabric technologies underpin much of southwest.com and by leveraging vSphere infrastructure on the back-end, Southwest has gone from 0-40% virtualized in less than 18 months and seen a reduction in time to deliver production servers from 6 days to one hour. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnHobD1eBG8]
Liberating IT and End-Users from Legacy Silos: as we enter the post-PC era we all know the pressures the consumer world is placing on enterprise IT. Employees expect their experience to be equal to their home life and they expect it “to just work” on whatever device they choose. And if it doesn’t….well, they’ll take things into their own hands creating a security, management, and compliance nightmare.
Now this is easy to talk about but very, very difficult to crack. At VMworld we demonstrated a complete solution that gives IT a fighting chance -- helping customers bring forward legacy Windows environments with the full-featured View 5.0 delivering updates to our Horizon Application Management platform, enabling both a secure corporate and personal persona on users’ mobile devices with Horizon Mobile, and advancing universal application and data delivery with Project AppBlast and Project Octopus. VMware’s vision seeks to free employees and enterprise IT from more than two decades of complex, device-centric computing, and delivers a more user-centric, IT-as-a-service experience. I’m using most of these new products internally via our “dogfood” program and am loving it. (Some trivia: Our own Paul Maritz is attributed as being the first to run “dogfood” programs in software companies!)
The World’s Leading Cloud Infrastructure Platform: as Paul Maritz pointed out in his keynote, we’re now in a world where more than 50% of the total workloads worldwide are virtualized – we have definitively entered the Cloud Era and VMware is dedicated to accelerating and amplifying our customers’ resulting benefits. Our product teams take tremendous pride in extending the lead of our technologies and it was a thrill to show off the results of more than 1 million engineering hours. We’re raising the bar yet again on what customers can expect in terms of performance, availability, and security for their core cloud infrastructure and even tackling the next datacenter frontier with VXLAN, taking on networking the way we’ve taken on storage and compute (stay tuned for more in this space). And as one attendee told me, “it’s about automation, automation, automation.” We’re continuing to drive management and automation innovation for an even more application-aware, automated infrastructure. And the message should be quite clear that our mission is to get customers to this new world, but in an evolutionary way. We’re constantly looking at a technology rollout that helps our customers bridge from their existing infrastructure environments to this brave new world of the cloud.
It’s been an amazing first few days here in Las Vegas and I want to say thank you to all of the employees, partners, customers, students, VMUGgers, “Labbers,” and technologists with a passion to move the industry forward. Without your desire to invent the next-generation of IT none of us would be here to celebrate these amazing innovations. Every year I am humbled and awed by the creative conversations in the hallway, the sci-fi-like demos on the exhibit floor from companies both new and old, and the enthusiasm and energy from folks who have traveled from across the world. It’s truly a privilege and I can’t wait to share what’s in store in our VMworld Europe event this Fall and next year as we return to San Francisco!