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VMware Acquires EMC Management Apps

EMC announced that VMware has agreed to acquire management apps from EMC's Ionix division, beefing up VMware's management offerings. The applications are Application Discovery Manager, Server Configuration Manager, Server Manager and IP from FastScale, which provides thin provisioning of virtual machines. The deal is closing at $200 million, and EMC and VMware expect to close in Q2 2010.

It's no secret that VMware has been building on its hypervisor product line with management products such as Site Recovery Manager, which automates and streamlines site recovery, Orchestrator, which automates VM workflows and ConfigControl, which tracks and monitors configurations and dependencies. VMware has also been aggressively integrating their management applications like vCenter and hypervisor products with all comers through their extensive APIs. The breadth and maturity of the product lines keeps VMware ahead of other hypervisor vendors like Citrix, Microsoft and Oracle.

According to Ben Verghese, chief management architect in the Virtualization and Cloud Platforms Business Unit, "[IT as a service] starts with efficient pooling of infrastructure to create on-demand virtualized capacity, add automation based on industry-wide and user-local policies, self-service access to a catalogue of IT services, charge-back and usage reporting, and you achieve public-cloud economics with private cloud control." AKA, the private cloud for enterprise IT.

The acquired products fill gaps in VMware's management capabilities with Service Manager, which provides integrated server management, including change management, SLA management, virtualized application provisioning and which bridges the gap between physical and virtual application deployments. Shekar Ayyar, VP of Strategy and Corp Development summed up the acquisition like this: "The assets we got from EMC fill those goals. It's simplifying management rather than adding complexity. You can do more with VMware and use that as the basic operating system for the data center."

As VMware moves deeper into the management space, they run the risk of competing with systems management vendors like BMC, CA, HP and IBM, as well as newer vendors that also offer virtual management applications that integrate with VMware and other hypervisors. Ayyar contends, however, that VMware is not trying to replace or compete with systems management vendor products. Rather, VMware is going to provide the tools and services to manage a VMware environment with integration points exposed to systems management vendors that are adept at managing large, heterogeneous environments.

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