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VMware submitted
its OVF 1.0 standards-based vCloud
API
to the DMTF Cloud
incubator
back in September 2009. This was an effort to get the conversation and
process started on creating a standardized cloud API for all to use. Putting
that OVF wrapper around VMs makes everyone’s life easier. The vCloud API allows
for upload and download of vApps along with their instantiation, deployment and
operation. You can also use it to deploy and manage virtualized workloads in
internal as well as external clouds.
 


Unlike the VMDK file format that encodes a single
virtual disk from a virtual machine with no information about the virtual
hardware of a machine (such as the CPU, memory, disk, and network information),
OVF provides a complete specification of the virtual machine including CPU, memory,
networking and storage. We like OVF because an administrator can quickly
provision this virtual machine into a virtual infrastructure with little or no
manual intervention. And because OVF is a standards-based portable format, it
allows the user to deploy this virtual machine in any hypervisor that supports
OVF.

 

While the vCloud API may not be the end result of
this process, we wanted to step up and start a conversation (although we think ours is a good place to start). Fujitsu was the next to follow in
November 2009 with an API submission (really more a definition of interconnects) although
there are others out there with an API (Amazon, Rackspace, Google, Sun Microsystems, etc).
Look for Citrix and Microsoft to embrace OVF as well.

 


This will
be a long process and we probably won’t see the first draft until the end of
2010 at the earliest.
If you happen to work for or work wit
h one of the other
companies that has an API out there then encourage them to work with this DMTF process
so we can get something the ISV
ecosystem can really get behind. Standards is the only way this cloud thing
is going to work and stick around.
 

If you want to get more information on the progress
of the vCloud API, check out http://communities.vmware.com/community/developer/forums/vcloudapi,
follow us on Twitter at @vCloud or become a fan of our Facebook Page at http://www.facebook.com/#/pages/VMware-vCloud/203532122896?ref=ts