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Microsoft and VMware Wage War of Words

Software giant Microsoft and virtualization powerhouse VMware continued their verbal sparring this week with Microsoft disputing claims made in a white paper published on VMware's site that decries Microsoft's licensing and use policies for virtualization software as restricting "customers' flexibility and freedom to choose virtualization software by limiting who can run their software and how they can run it."

There's a lot at stake here. I know we've said this before, but there's a battle going on for who owns the OS closest to the bare metal--the evolution of the hypervisor, if you will.
Greg Shipley
NWC Contributing Editor

....Jump over to the NWC Blog where Greg Shipley, Howard Marks and Steven Hill continue the discussion of the impact of this virtualization war of words.

In a written statement issued by Microsoft's Mike Neil, senior director of the company's strategy, Microsoft challenges the white paper's veracity, saying VMware propagates "inaccuracies and misunderstandings of our current license and use policies."

Neil goes on to say that Microsoft believes it is "being progressive and fair," both with regard to its licensing policies and when it comes to collaborating with partners and customers. This dispute reportedly arose after a New York Times article was published earlier this month which detailed upstart VMware's intent to take on "the industry's Goliath" Microsoft head-on. In the piece, VMware accused Microsoft of adding new restrictions that limit how its software can be used in virtual machines.

Mendel Rosenblum, a VMware founder and its chief scientist, goes as far as comparing Microsoft's legendary feud with Netscape, which resulted in a slew of antitrust lawsuits. In its white paper, the virtualization vendor accuses Microsoft of moving to "control a new layer that sits on the hardware by forcing their specifications and APIs on the industry."

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