VMware Bets On Legacy Cloud

VMware Store at VMworld 2016 (Source: Justin Warren)
VMware Store at VMworld 2016 (Source: Justin Warren)

VMware’s position is now as a legacy IT provider, but that’s not a bad thing per se.

Consider this: most IT workloads are not in a cloud of any variety. Many important IT systems have already been written, and completely rebuilding them for a new cloudy world isn’t going to happen over night, or possibly ever. Writing code means writing bugs, and a nicely debugged system that fulfills a business need doesn’t need changing.

VMware’s announcement that you can now—well, soon—essentially bridge your own on-site infrastructure with hosted gear and cloud-hosted VMs using the same tools and techniques that you’ve been using for over a decade. Organisations have made a lot of investments in existing systems and throwing them away because cloud is the new hotness doesn’t make business sense.

However, and this is a big however, the benefits of cloud are not about where things are hosted. The major value of the public cloud approach is in the processes used to manage IT. It’s about a lot more than just the infrastructure.

If you go all in with VMware’s vision, and shell out the major cash bundle for the full set of vSphere, VSAN, and NSX so your vAdmins can continue pointing and clicking their way around vCenter to provision infrastructure, that’s not a private cloud. Not in my book, anyway. And yet there are plenty of customers that I talk to that believe that’s exactly what they have.

If you have to raise a ticket with the helpdesk to get a new VM, you don’t have a cloud, private or otherwise.