VMworld 2016 Europe: Advancing the Cross-Cloud Architecture

By Joe Baguley, Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, EMEA at VMware 

VP and Chief Technology Officer, EMEA at VMware

VP and Chief Technology Officer, EMEA at VMware

VMware returns to the Fira Gran Via in Barcelona this week for three days of keynotes, sessions, product announcements, and networking during VMworld® 2016 Europe. After the excitement in the industry following last week’s announcement of VMware Cloud on AWS, you may well wonder what we have left to wow you with!?!? – Well, this week we’re excited to unveil even more great solutions along with customer deployment examples, including several advancements the VMware Cross-Cloud Architecture™. Our Cross-Cloud Architecture gives customers the freedom and control they need to run, manage, connect and secure their applications across clouds and devices in a single operating environment. As our CEO Pat Gelsinger noted during his keynote at VMworld U.S. in September: this is the future of digital business.

In this post, I’d like to share with you the key points of the announcements here this week in a handy summary.

First up, we’re sharing our expanded vision for Cross-Cloud Architecture with the announcement of upcoming releases of VMware’s core compute & storage solutions: vSphere® 6.5 and Virtual SAN™ 6.5. Worth noting is that both solutions will bring additional support for containerized applications and workloads.

Talking of containers, this week we are announcing updates to VMware Photon™ Platform, including built-in support for container orchestration leader Kubernetes, enabling IT teams to deliver Kubernetes as a service to their development teams. Additionally, Photon Platform will now support two members of VMware’s networking and storage portfolio: VMware NSX® and VMware Virtual SAN. With these updates, the Photon Platform will be able to deliver the scope and speed of computing power previously only accessible to hyper-scale Web companies.

At the heart of our Cloud Management and adding to our Cross-Cloud commitment, VMware vRealize® 7.2 will now feature out-of-the-box support for Microsoft Azure, as well as additional container management capabilities, including Admiral™, a platform that accelerates application delivery – I strongly recommend that you have a closer look at this for a glimpse of the future. Companies using vRealize 7.2 will now be able to use its unified blueprint capabilities to more quickly and easily deliver integrated multi-tier applications across many of the leading public clouds, including Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, VMware vCloud® Air™ and vCloud Air Network™.

During the conference, we’ll highlight how VMware’s Workspace™ ONE™ is being used by some of Europe’s largest companies, including Lufthansa Cargo, enabling greater digital innovation as these enterprises make the move to BYOD (bring your own device) initiatives. We’ll demonstrate our commitment to enabling the delivery of applications and data securely to users, and in addition, we’ll introduce Workspace ONE Essentials, a solution that makes it easier to support standalone, secure workspaces for your business without device management. We’re also pleased to extend our Workspace ONE offerings with new collaborations with leading technology partners including F5 Networks and Symantec. If you’re here, stop one of my colleagues from VMware and ask them to show you how we all use it daily across all our devices to securely access what we need – apps and data.

Now, on to more detail.

Revolutionizing Digital Business

During VMworld 2016 U.S., we unveiled our vision for VMware’s Cross-Cloud Architecture, our revolutionary new approach to managing and securing applications across multiple clouds. Today, we’re excited to expand on that vision with the announcement of upcoming releases of vSphere 6.5 and Virtual SAN 6.5, as well as updates to vRealize Automation™ 7.2 to increase support for containers, enabling developers to increase productivity and make it easier for IT to run containerized applications in production.

Additionally, vCloud Air is announcing two new beta vCloud Air services. One is a new vCloud Air disaster recovery solution that’s directly integrated into vSphere. The other is a beta of VMware Cloud Foundation™ Service on vCloud Air, which provides a fast and easy way to leverage vSphere, Virtual SAN, and NSX in one fully integrated service offering. Together, these solutions will help enterprise IT teams advance their software-defined data centers.

The latest version of our virtualization platform, vSphere 6.5 will feature a simplified customer experience through increased automation and management capabilities, comprehensive built-in security, and support for new workload types, including containers. The new release will incorporate a wealth of features to enhance application functionality, including VMware vCenter Server® Appliance™ to deliver a simplified building block for vSphere environments, REST APIs to enable greater control and automation of virtual infrastructure for modern applications, and VMware vSphere Client to simplify the administrative experience.

Security is also a priority for vSphere 6.5, with the integration of VM encryption to protect against unauthorized data access and Secure Boot to prevent the tampering of images and the loading of unauthorized components into vSphere environments. Also a feature of this new release, VMware vSphere Integrated Containers™ will now enable IT operations teams to provide a Docker compatible interface to their app teams without re-architecting their existing infrastructure.

Over the past three years, VMware’s SDDC team has dedicated itself to enhancing Virtual SAN, our industry-leading hyper-converged solution for the hybrid cloud. This product release will have the capability to improve total cost of ownership savings by 50 percent over the previous version by adding support for containers and physical workloads, unveiling iSCSI support, eliminating networking hardware costs from two-node Remote/Branch Office (ROBO) configurations, and adding all-flash hardware support to Virtual SAN Standard Edition. In addition, VMware is also announcing vSphere Virtual Volumes™ 2.0, which will enhance enterprise-readiness through enhanced native support for array replication and support for business-critical applications.

Combined, these offerings work to build on our Cross-Cloud Architecture’s leading private and hybrid cloud capabilities by giving customers and partners the freedom to innovate across multiple clouds.

Calling All Developers

This week, we introduce new networking and storage services – including the Kubernetes container orchestration platform, VMware NSX, and VMware Virtual SAN – to the VMware Photon Platform, our answer to running cloud-native apps on-premises at scale. The comprehensive Photon Platform, which also supports Pivotal Cloud Foundry, will enable enterprise developers to focus on their actual development efforts, versus building, operating, and supporting a custom solution.

Designed to reduce application development lifecycles, VMware Photon Platform’s new Kubernetes as a Service integration will make it easier to automate the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Now Kubernetes clusters of all sizes will be to be provisioned within minutes, enabling developers the freedom to scale up their clusters as needed with zero downtime.

VMware Photon Platform will also add networking and storage services powered by VMware NSX and VMware Virtual SAN, thereby offering an end-to-end enterprise cloud-native infrastructure platform for running modern, containerized applications in production. Initially, Photon Platform will offer NSX-based switching and routing services.

But Photon Platform couldn’t truly be end-to-end without block storage functionality. To complete the picture, Photon Platform will now offer block storage services based on VMware Virtual SAN, offering flexible, programmable and proven persistent storage for containered and cloud-native applications. The service will deliver elastic storage that can scale up and out to enable rapid deployment speeds, and workloads will benefit from robust data services such as duplication, stretched clusters, erasure coding and more.

Bridging to the Public Cloud

VMworld Europe also brings announcements of enhancements for our customers of vRealize Automation and vRealize Log Insight™. In an effort to better address the needs of developers and their IT teams, this quarter, vRealize Automation 7.2 will introduce out-of-the-box support for Microsoft Azure as well as new container management capabilities. Through this update, IT and DevOps practitioners will now be able to employ unified service blueprint capabilities to simplify and accelerate the delivery of integrated multi-tier applications with app-centric networking and security across many of the leading public clouds, including Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, VMware vCloud Air and vCloud Air Network. vRealize 7.2 will also support Admiral, a built-in container management portal that developers and app teams can use to speed up application delivery.

But the SDDC love doesn’t stop there. VMware is announcing two new betas to bolster VMware Cloud Services, including a beta of a new vCloud Air disaster recovery solution designed specifically for the enterprise, and a beta of VMware Cloud Foundation Service on vCloud Air, providing a fast and easy way to leverage the combined power of vSphere, vSphere, and NSX in a fully integrated service offering.

Powering the Digital Workspace

As enterprises continue along the road to digital transformation, VMware makes it easy deploy secure digital workspaces to support BYOD initiatives with the release of VMware Workspace ONE Essentials. The new solution will further broaden the use cases for identity-defined workspaces for BYO and unmanaged devices by providing a standalone, simple and secure identity-defined workspace without device management.

Workspace ONE’s portfolio of clients, including Lufthansa Cargo, Akademiska Hus, and Essilor will be on hand at VMworld Europe to share their success stories turning to VMware secure digital workspace solution for digital transformation and support for mobile initiatives.

¡Disfruten del show!

Is that enough for you? It only begins to scratch the surface of what we have in store for VMworld 2016 Europe. One of the moments from the day that stood out for me was the IDC research that Pat Gelsinger cited on mainstage, demonstrating the net-positive effect that virtualization has had on energy and carbon emission reductions around the world. That was a tribute to you – our customers and partners – for your collective impact We see these new technologies as being integral to the future of digital business, and we’re eager to elaborate on these initiatives through our packed schedule of events, networking opportunities, and of course, plenty of demo time with our suite of offerings. More importantly, however, we’re eager to hear your suggestions and feedback on our solutions, because you – our customers and partners – are what gives us direction as we realize our vision. Most of my time here is spent with customers and partners, in a jam-packed agenda of roundtables and events (including meeting lots of VMUG folks) where I get to hear your feedback – if you see me, please stop and say “Hi”!

I hope you enjoy the show.



VMware, VMworld, Cross-Cloud Architecture, vSphere, Virtual SAN, Photon, NSX, vRealize, Admiral, vCloud, vCloud Air, vCloud Air Network, VMware Workspace, Workspace ONE, vRealize Automation, Cloud Foundation, vCenter, vCenter Server, vCenter Server Appliance, vSphere Integrated Containers, Virtual Volumes, and Log Insight are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions.