VMware, Nutanix, and AWS: Top 3 Virtualization Stories of 2016

“I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time.” [Blaise Pascal]

IT professionals are busy.  Really busy.  It’s really simple.  They have to do more stuff and protect more stuff with less budget and even less time.  So when I write blog posts, I have a tendency to compare the attention span of the average IT pro with the proverbial “hummingbird on crystal meth.”

Virtualization was a hot topic in the news in 2016.  I could write a top 10 list – or even a top 20 list – easily.  But in honor of “less is more”, I’ve taken the time to cull the list to the top 3 virtualization stories.  So without further ado:

  • Dell acquires EMC.  Dell completed the purchase of EMC for $67B.  What did they get?  A lot of storage and a lot of smaller businesses.  But the heart and soul of the acquisition was VMware.
  • Nutanix eyes VMware vSphere revenue.  Nutanix delayed their IPO by nine months due to poor market conditions and then blew the doors off with a 130% gain on its initial day of trading.  Beyond rewarding its investors and early employees, the IPO enables Nutanix to accelerate its efforts to unseat VMware with Acropolis.  I talk to customers and buyers every day – and I can tell you that Acropolis is being seriously considered either immediately upon the purchase of Nutanix or more often as a future option.  The licensing savings associated with the KVM-based hypervisor are turning head
  • VMware vCloud Air is dead; long live AWS.  VMware announced at VMworld 2016 that VMware Cloud on AWS would be available in 2017.  VMware and AWS aren’t building this on the AWS PaaS (Platform as a Service) incredibly successful underpinnings but instead will operate on a purpose-built AWS infrastructure designed for and dedicated to VMware.

So what happens in 2017?  Will Dell/VMware be able to compete effectively in HCI (Hyper-Converged Infrastructure?)  Will Nutanix shift a lot of VMware vSphere licenses to Acropolis?  Will VMware Cloud on AWS rock the world or fizzle like vCloud Air did?

Here’s to an interesting 2017.


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