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Virtualization Looms Large at LinuxWorld

The "V" word was everywhere at this weeks LinuxWorld conference in San Francisco, with a flurry of activity from established virtualization vendor VMware Inc. and startups looking to gain a toehold in the market.

Virtualization of servers and storage is hot at the moment, as IT managers struggle to manage increasingly complex data center infrastructures (see Building Virtual Empires and Suppliers Serve Virtualization).

VMware, which is widely regarded as a virtualization trailblazer, extended its support for virtualized versions of Linux and the Solaris x86 operating systems in its ESX and GSX server products (see VMware Adds OS Support). The idea is that users can now run more operating systems across the same pieces of virtualized hardware.

With VMware’s renewed focus on Solaris, it was hardly surprising to see Sun Microsystems Inc. hitch its storage and servers to the software vendor at LinuxWorld (see Sun Allies With VMware). Solaris started life as a proprietary Sun technology, and the company is now coming under pressure from hardware rivals looking to bolster their own virtualization stories (see IBM's Got Virtual Vision and HP Reaches Blade Milestone).

However, VMware is, for the most part, keeping its technology crown jewels well under lock and key. LinuxWorld is traditionally a time when vendors attempt to play up their open-source creds by making the source code behind their technologies more widely available (see Vendors Gear Up for LinuxWorld, CA Unveils Open Source Challenge, and Oracle Makes Clusters Open Source).

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