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Ernest de Leon

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vSphere 5 reaches general availability from VMware

While the press release is still new, I have heard a muted response to the general release of vSphere 5. I am excited about the new features that come with this major platform upgrade, but I am still hearing the mutterings about the licensing shift with vRAM entitlements. While it will take a few months to sort everything out as many of my clients begin the upgrade, I'm optimistic about what the platform will deliver overall to the customer. While VMware has had some loose integration between their traditional virtualization products and their cloud products, vSphere 5 marks the first solid integration between the two. I feel that this is VMware's first push to get customers to look at things in a more 'cloud-like' perspective and perhaps start the discussions about migrating to a purely cloud infrastructure. We'll see how effective this is over the long run. I can't wait to have the preliminary cloud discussions with my clients who have not yet made that leap. It will be a challenging yet rewarding time for everyone in the industry over the next few years.

VMware press release copied below.

VMware [...] today announced the general availability of VMware vSphere 5, delivering nearly 200 new and enhanced capabilities to help customers transform IT by driving greater efficiency from existing investments and improving operational agility.

"With the release of VMware vSphere 5, VMware is helping customers accelerate their journey toward a more efficient and automated cloud infrastructure," said Bogomil Balkansky, senior vice president, cloud infrastructure products, VMware. "The enhancements and new innovations we've introduced in VMware vSphere 5 provide a robust, reliable platform for business applications, enabling customers to effectively respond to the growing needs of their business and giving them confidence in their IT transformation."

The foundation of VMware's cloud infrastructure suite, VMware vSphere 5, includes new features and enhancements to deliver better application performance and availability for all business-critical applications. It also introduces advanced automation capabilities to free IT from manual processes and allow it to be more responsive to changing business requirements.

VMware vSphere 5 supports virtual machines (VMs) that are up to four times more powerful than previous versions -- VMs can now be configured with up to 1 terabyte of memory and 32 virtual CPUs. When combined with VMware vSphere 5's enhanced High Availability, these gains in VM scalability and performance enable customers to virtualize any business-critical applications with confidence in the application's continued performance and availability.

VMware vSphere 5 also introduces three key new flagship features -- Auto-Deploy, Profile-Driven Storage and Storage DRS -- that extend the platform's unique datacenter resource management capabilities, delivering intelligent policy management to support an automated "set it and forget it" approach to managing datacenter resources, including server deployment and storage management. Customers can define policies and establish the operating parameters, and VMware vSphere 5 does the rest.

VMware vSphere 5 and the cloud infrastructure suite are supported by more than 25,000 partners, including technology partners, independent software vendors (ISVs), solution providers, service providers, and systems integrators, as well as every major global hardware manufacturer. VMware's partner community continues to mature as the company consistently sets the bar for innovation in virtualization and cloud technologies. Read more about ecosystem support for VMware vSphere 5.

Pricing and Availability VMware vSphere 5 is currently available in packages and prices that address the widest range of customer requirements, starting at $83 per processor. Visit the VMware vSphere Upgrade Center for more information on licensing and editions.

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Ernest is a technologist, a futurist and serial entrepreneur who aims to help those making IT related business decisions, from Administrators through Architects to CIOs. Having held just about every title in the IT field all the way up through CTO, he lends his industry experience and multi-platform thinking to all who need it. Creating a vision and executing it are two different things, and he is here to help with both. Seeing the forest and the trees at the same time is a special skill which takes years of experience to develop.