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PayPal To Replace VMware With OpenStack

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 25, 2013 @03:59PM (#43275795)

    VMware is not in a monopoly position anymore and can no longer dictate prices to people who have free alternatives.

    • by alen (225700) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:09PM (#43275889)

      Nice for public facing websites and custom software but for a lot of enterprise apps they are certified only on VMware or hyper-v. You lose support on any other hyper visor

      • by MightyMartian (840721) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:13PM (#43275935) Journal

        For now. But I've found hyper-v is at best an adequate product and VMware is obscenely priced, so in the end enterprise software houses will adapt as they did to a landscape that shifted away from closed source *nix solutions like SCO and Solaris. Sure, they may only support Redhat as far as distros go, but the fact is that VMware and Microsoft's shoddy little product hardly rate as the only virtualization solutions out there.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by k8to (9046)

          Enterprise customers have been using a wide variety of linux virtualization solutions for many years now. Virtuozzo, kvm-based systems, xen based systems and many others are the norm. It's only people who seem to have more money than sense who standardize on vmware.

          They're the new version of "let's store everything on netapps".

          FD: my company makes both these nonsense choices, but most of our customers don't anymore.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            It's only people who seem to have more money than sense who standardize on vmware.

            Or perhaps they have different needs than you. Perhaps they have a budget for 1-2 personnel to manage their virtual machine environment, not 5-10. Perhaps they have a budget to spend about $70k for salary rather than the $120k linux virtualization guys go for. Or the extra few hundred grand for the five-times-as-many people required to carry it off.

            Or perhaps they want to be able to easily replace those 1-2 people when they quit, retire, or die of old age with somebody else who already knows the product ins

            • by k8to (9046)

              You clearly didn't read my post, nor understand the issue.

              We didn't choose to do the smart thing, so our needs are irrelevant.

              I'm in regular contact with a larger percentage of large enterprise IT shops, probably over 20% of the total base of sizable IT departments, and I speak from the experience of what *they* choose.

              Meanwhile, if you need to deal with virtualization management at large scale, vmware is worse in terms of staff efficiency, because you can't do custom automation in a reasonable way.

              Your nu

      • by LordLimecat (1103839) on Monday March 25, 2013 @05:12PM (#43276447)

        HyperV isnt really an option for a lot of things, since its support for non-SUSE, non-Windows stuff is, shall we say, "lacking". Certainly you'll have a lot of fun getting pfSense running on it.

        • by stiggle (649614)

          FreeBSD (on which pfSense is based) has Hyper-V support since last year, but as pfSense and other firewalls are slower in their updates the current releases are still using FreeBSD 8.1. the beta snapshots of pfSense 2.1 use 8.3 which can include Hyper-V integration.

          Currently it installs fine using the legacy network adaptors (so you only get 100MBit links).
          If you want full OS intergration and to use non-legacy network adaptors then you need to use the latest 2.1 beta & install a rebuilt FreeBSD kernel w

      • by Bengie (1121981)
        OpenStack can also manage HyperV and bare-bones HyperV is free. And by "bare-bones", I mean doesn't come with a UI, otherwise has all of the other bells and whistles.
    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:12PM (#43275927) Journal

      VMware is not in a monopoly position anymore and can no longer dictate prices to people who have free alternatives.

      Vmware is arguably facing a serious structural squeeze: Outside of a few neat-but-not-necessarily-all-that-widely-used features, virtualization technology is being commodified pretty aggressively. Vmware is still arguably the easiest to use; but that doesn't help them much with customers who are running enough servers that having a few gurus in house is cheaper than paying the license fees. Even worse, at the same time that team FOSS is chipping away at the large-scale market, Microsoft is essentially offering 'Buy Windows Server, get Hyper-V for free*', which is a pretty attractive offer for the outfits who aren't going to go for Xen or KVM; but need to run Windows Server stuff anyway, and probably have some MS-comfortable guys in the shop.

      If it were just a squeeze from one direction or the other, I'd be less pessimistic; but forces are converging on them from both sides. Unless Vmware discounts their licenses to nearly free, their high volume customers aren't likely to stick with them, and having strong enterprise support and brand recognition isn't exactly going to save them from Microsoft(who has the same thing) on the low-volume smaller shop end. Blood Bath.

      • by Synerg1y (2169962) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:34PM (#43276107)

        This has been a long time coming, but before going all crazy on knocking VMWare... we wouldn't have VMs without them? VMs that revolutionized IT infrastructure.

        I don't think they've even begun to react to the competition or perceive it, maybe this move by paypal will put Xen on their radar, but for the longest time they were THE ONLY virtualization provider because nobody else could do it, people who call VMWare a monopoly simply do not understand the nature of technology and innovation.

        Ex. name one anti-competitive practice they've employed? I can name one that's not ESXi has always been free, and that is actually what openstack is starting to surpass ESXi making it a viable alternative to the ESXi full blown vizor.

        You folks are right though, the licensing structure completely bends the little guys over, a simple solution (w vCenter) can easily run up in the 50k range for like 200-300 users, unacceptable. But... all they have to do is bring their licensing costs down... right?

        • I have nothing against them as a company, or as innovators(for reasons I'd rather not revisit, I once enjoyed the better part of a day grovelling through their documentation on simulating various PC timers, while ensuring certain sorts of consistency under varying CPU loads and across host migrations, a surprisingly hairy business).

          I just strongly suspect that they are pretty much screwed.

          • Theyre screwed becuase they have the best product? They can change their pricing to be competitive if they really want; apparently they just dont see the need yet.

            They wont be "screwed" until their competitors have better features than them, but if you check their competitor's marketing pages, you will notice that none of them claim to be better-- just that theyre a better "value". If / when VMware has to start claiming that, then theyre in trouble.

            • by khasim (1285)

              They can change their pricing to be competitive if they really want; apparently they just dont see the need yet.

              That's going to be a problem for them as well. Because their customers who have been paying the current price will be annoyed if the price drops just so VMWare can maintain marketshare.

              They wont be "screwed" until their competitors have better features than them, but if you check their competitor's marketing pages, you will notice that none of them claim to be better-- just that theyre a better "v

        • by Darinbob (1142669)

          Actually I never unstood why you have VMs on a system that you don't have to emulate. Ie, I use VMware on a Mac to run Windows stuff, but I can't figure out why run Windows on top of Windows? Sure there's the issue of making a sandbox, but surely there's more to it than that, it's an expensive and slow way to get something simple done. Some people have virtual servers, but what's the point of that if you end up with two servers on one machine that run more than twice as slow than if you just had the same

          • Service isolation is a nice one.
            hardware and infrastructure abstraction and guest portability

          • Actually I never unstood why you have VMs on a system that you don't have to emulate. Ie, I use VMware on a Mac to run Windows stuff, but I can't figure out why run Windows on top of Windows? Sure there's the issue of making a sandbox, but surely there's more to it than that, it's an expensive and slow way to get something simple done. Some people have virtual servers, but what's the point of that if you end up with two servers on one machine that run more than twice as slow than if you just had the same server do both jobs directly.

            Because they don't run twice as slow. One of the MAJOR Sun servers in a shop I used to work in normally ran at 14% CPU capacity. Add a few more virtual servers to the box and you can get a lot more for your hardware buck. And, incidentally, save electricity - they were blowing breakers because of all those mostly-idle boxes each pulling power.

            With a suitable high-performance host, which can be hardware-optimized or simply running para-virtualized, the actual VM overhead is quite low. In the mean time, you'r

        • by sjames (1099) on Monday March 25, 2013 @07:46PM (#43277645) Homepage

          No knocks from me on VMWare itself. It's biggest failing has always been it's licensing.

          I think you may be over-valuing them though. We had VMs on mainframes in the '70s (VM/370). VMWare brought full virtualization to PC class hardware (as opposed to the lesser capabilities of DOSBox and company). In part, it was simply a matter of waiting until x86 hardware was sufficiently capable. I have little doubt that we would have VMs today with or without them.

        • by mysidia (191772)

          You folks are right though, the licensing structure completely bends the little guys over, a simple solution (w vCenter) can easily run up in the 50k range for like 200-300 users, unacceptable. But... all they have to do is bring their licensing costs down... right?

          They have a solution for the little guys.. Essentials+; 3 or fewer hosts.

          50k buys the highest level of licensing they offer, for several hosts. Now if you are buying extreme-high capacity hosts which you should be using for virtualization

      • Microsoft is essentially offering 'Buy Windows Server, get Hyper-V for free*', which is a pretty attractive offer for the outfits who aren't going to go for Xen or KVM; but need to run Windows Server stuff anyway, and probably have some MS-comfortable guys in the shop.

        Better yet, that's also "Buy Windows Server Datacenter Edition, get Hyper-V for free, as well as free licensing for as many Windows Server guest OS instances that as you want to run." That is a huge money-saver for Microsoft shops even over the Free alternatives.

    • by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:25PM (#43276027) Homepage Journal

      This story from Gigaom is a little more tempered than the article on Businessinsider. It quotes the Paypal director, saying they will continue to use VMware - if you read right through to the end of it.

      http://gigaom.com/2013/03/25/mirantis-open-sources-its-openstack-cloud-management-tools/ [gigaom.com]

      This, in any case, is not a "tipping-point" indicator.

      With or without Mirantis or Fuel, Openstack is a tool kit for building your own CloudOS. Unless you can make a business based on the internal IP generated, there's no win here for most enterprise shops.

      Amazon did this sucessfully - getting value from reselling access to raw infrastructure, based on development created for internal needs.

      Yahoo failed at this, after more than a decade optimising their own OS layer for internet scale-out. They would have been better served to eliminate their OS engineering unit, buying common OTS Linux/Windows.

      PayPal are somewhere between these poles. Having been on their own linux-based, scale-out physical architecture for more than a decade, they are well-positioned to derive value from Openstack. If you were Williams-Sonoma or Chevron? They do not want or need to become an OS developer/integrator.

    • by EzInKy (115248)

      Even if the solution is inferior, I've always favored investing in solutions that don't require lock in. If VMware fails, it is their own fault for not providing their users freedom.

  • by grusapa (756151) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:05PM (#43275851)
  • Good Riddens (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BitZtream (692029) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:07PM (#43275865)

    Theres something wrong with VMware that makes it think it can charge more for virtualization software than the hardware it is replacing. They need their asses handed to them for a few years to put them back in their place.

    • Even for nonprofits VMWare is excessively expensive. Most vendors are half price or so (some are even 75%), but not VMWare. If I remember right they were 95% of the original price.

      They're insane.

      • That's how you get when you are too big on your own for too long, feeding shareholders money. The shareholders take over and the company suffers as a result of having to sacrifice creativity for profit. Happens all the time.
        • Re: Good Riddens (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:49PM (#43276257)

          The last CEO made structural changes to enhance profitability yet sacrificed the long term health of the company. For 5 years of "work" cashed in $60 million in stock grants in 3 days (Nov 2012) and was getting a $1.5M USD salary with cash bonuses.

          The failed "new" licensing scheme that they tried to push thru in 2011 backfired because it was seen for what it really was, a cash grab.

          The company has become extremely bureaucratic and has lost it's innovative edge. In essence it had become Microsoft. I guess that is what you get when you hire alot of management staff & executives from Microsoft.

          They are responsible for their own shortcomings and present/future predicaments.

        • ..which generally gets others to realize that theres plenty of money to be had if only they get their act together. Amazing how many features and how much bugfixing HyperV got once MS realized that a decent hypervisor was a compelling feature.

          Seems to me things are working as intended; this is how we ended up with multiple sweet browsers when MS stagnated.

      • by girlinatrainingbra (2738457) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:23PM (#43276015)
        Being a non-profit or "not for profit" corporation does not mean that the employees and board members work for a pittance. Take a look at the salaries for Goodwill and the Red Cross and United Way in the San Diego area. Each chair makes more than $300,000.00 per year, sometimes substantially more when you include their "car allowance" and "living allowance" and "competitive allowance". A lot of their other employees are also extremely well paid. So there's no need to worry about "non-profit" behemoths like these not getting any sort of serious discount.
        • by MrL0G1C (867445) on Monday March 25, 2013 @06:25PM (#43277101) Journal

          Each chair makes more than $300,000.00 per year

          Absolutely disgusting, taking peoples charitable donations and living like lords.

          I decided to check your facts, the president of red cross US gets $1million a year!! Some people have no shame.

        • by jbengt (874751)
          Most non-profit companies are not behemoths. I know quite a few people working in or running small to medium-sized ones, like pet rescues, food pantries, etc. Many of these people volunteer or barely make ends meet. Granted, most of those wouldn't really need to virtualized their servers, but there are many small-to-medium sized non-profits that could use the tech, but only if it is affordable.
          • You're right about that. That's why I specifically said that there's no reason to worry about the "nonprofit behemoths", and even gave an example of the three most profligate wasters of our donations. I agree with you that these small-to-medium not-for-profits, particularly animal shelters, are worthy of receiving discounts or even freebies and free-assistance from linux and FOSS types. I volunteer at a local pet shelter, and they've got oodles of free labor types assisting on their web page, so they don
    • by tlhIngan (30335)

      Theres something wrong with VMware that makes it think it can charge more for virtualization software than the hardware it is replacing. They need their asses handed to them for a few years to put them back in their place.

      It's name. VMWare was the first to virtualize the x86, and thus people bought into them by name alone. Sort of like how people used to buy IBM, or Microsoft. Now they buy VMWare.

      And I know many a sysadmin who for their home system, refuse to run anything but the home versions of VMWare (no

      • by Aaden42 (198257)

        In fairness, at least on Mac, VMWare slaughters VirtualBox and Parallels on performance. Worth the money, IMHO. On Linux/Windows it could well be a different story.

        • by Lashat (1041424)

          Open Source, Upstreamed, Accelerated OpenGL Linux Display Driver (vmwgfx) = Linux win for VMware.

      • I have no experience with Parallels, but you cannot compare Virtualbox with any of the other hypervisors. It is great for one-off projects, until it randomly devours your VM due to an upgrade (which happened to me, and was a documented bug); or until it hangs; or until you realize that its acceleration for one or another feature is limited to windows only.

        VMWare workstation really is miles ahead of VirtualBox, and really is worth the price. I wish I could try HyperV on my home rig, but of course installin

    • by chispito (1870390)

      charge more for virtualization software than the hardware it is replacing

      That isn't why organizations virtualize.

    • I have ~950 VMs on 14 servers.

      Even at full price, I'm paying WAAAAY less in licensing than if I had to have all that hardware running, moreso when you throw on renting more space, paying for more power/AC/network/etc.

      • by mysidia (191772)

        Even at full price, I'm paying WAAAAY less in licensing than if I had to have all that hardware running, moreso when you throw on renting more space, paying for more power/AC/network/etc.

        But without virtualization, would you really be running all those servers -- or would you have fewer servers with more apps consolidated on each one? I bet the latter.

        So while virtualization saves money, it's not necessarily as much as it might appear at first glance. Virtualization encourages the operation of more ser

    • Theres nothing wrong with them realizing that huge numbers of IT shops are willing to pay that money.

      You're right that it is refreshing to see some seriously healthy competition from Xen and HyperV, tho-- their prices are seriously painful.

  • by Stu101 (1031686) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:25PM (#43276025) Homepage

    Hi

    Speaking as someone who spends 100% of their working week in VMware it's no biggie. A (very) small group of us look after a stack just as big as that.

    With MS entreprise agreements that mean you now have to a seperate for each socket in the cluster (ie when DRS moves the guest to another cluster node or you get a host failure and HA kicks in) it costs an awful lot and also makes Hyper V looks more enticing to the bean counters as the Enterprise comes with all the Hyper V management tools..

    VMware realise they cannot compete on cost and they have said as much. No matter what you say about Hyper V I have seen some nasty failures that just wouldn't happen in VMware (and lets not forget host failures can mean loosing 30 guests at one time (Lets not go into allowable failure scenarios..)

    I have seen a Hyper V guest mentally shit itself and cause the host to fail in such a manner that the failed machines didn't restart. So rather than have a restart on another cluster member a guest was able to take out a host. Just wouldn't happen with VMware and it's highly advanced Virtual Machine Manager. VMware also has awesome other features including shared memory paging etc etc.

    Big business craves stability over saving a few hundred bucks per machine. However VMware are coming up with interesting new stuff and more interestingly the more advanced features are flowing down into more basic editions.

    Just my 2 cents.

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      I have seen vmware virtual center swear a machine was running that was not. I got to migrate everything onto another machine in the cluster and reboot that host. This was what support had me do as we got so far down the road and I really needed that VM back up.

      Nothing is perfect. The issue is the costs are not a few hundred per host, that would be acceptable. VMware will need to reduce its cost or it will lose market share.

      • by Stu101 (1031686)

        Yep, I know its a few thou per socket depending on edition and such. I was on about a few hundred per VMs, but yep, I know what you mean :)

    • If platform and information security are requirements, there's no alternative to VMware at scale.

      I'd like to see PCI/HIPAA Openstack. ;-)

    • Big business craves stability over saving a few hundred bucks per machine. However VMware are coming up with interesting new stuff and more interestingly the more advanced features are flowing down into more basic editions.

      Just my 2 cents.

      As somebody who has consulted on both you're 1000% correct, more than you think, even. The real structural advantage you get out of VMware over Hyper-V is that Hyper-V is another layer of lock-in--"free" is just to reel you in. The reality is that it isn't "free"--the cost is simply built into the license they've already sold you for Windows Server, however you've bought it. I went about 50 rounds with a guy who swore up and down Hyper-V really was "free!!!" I said "Great, how do you get it?"

      "Well, first you buy Windows..."

      Clueless--It is incredible the marketing power of "free" and how much money it separates people from everyday. And this doesn't even include what a hyperactive piece of crap Hyper-V is to deal with if you're doing anything other than a completely vanilla implementation...

      Anybody pushing Hyper-V has obviously never experienced vSphere Enterprise Plus. Me likey very much, thanks.

      • by jamesh (87723)

        Big business craves stability over saving a few hundred bucks per machine. However VMware are coming up with interesting new stuff and more interestingly the more advanced features are flowing down into more basic editions.

        Just my 2 cents.

        As somebody who has consulted on both you're 1000% correct, more than you think, even. The real structural advantage you get out of VMware over Hyper-V is that Hyper-V is another layer of lock-in--"free" is just to reel you in. The reality is that it isn't "free"--the cost is simply built into the license they've already sold you for Windows Server, however you've bought it. I went about 50 rounds with a guy who swore up and down Hyper-V really was "free!!!" I said "Great, how do you get it?"

        "Well, first you buy Windows..."

        Clueless--It is incredible the marketing power of "free" and how much money it separates people from everyday. And this doesn't even include what a hyperactive piece of crap Hyper-V is to deal with if you're doing anything other than a completely vanilla implementation...

        Anybody pushing Hyper-V has obviously never experienced vSphere Enterprise Plus. Me likey very much, thanks.

        FUD much? Windows Hyper-V Server [wikipedia.org] is free, as in the dollar cost to you is zero. If you want to run Windows on top of it then obviously you have to pay for that, but we're not arguing about that. You could just as easily run Linux on top of it and never pay a cent to Microsoft (although there is no good reason to do so - you'd use Xen instead).

        The guy you were talking to was obviously clueless in thinking you have to buy Windows first, but he was right about Hyper-V itself being free.

        Give me Hyper-V over

  • by jbmartin6 (1232050) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:30PM (#43276061)
    I thought the comment from this [arstechnica.com] was pretty telling:

    VMware COO Carl Eschenbach jumped on the Amazon theme, saying, "I look at this audience, and I look at VMware and the brand reputation we have in the enterprise, and I find it really hard to believe that we cannot collectively beat a company that sells books

    VMWare is completely lost if that is how they view their marketplace.

    • by h4rr4r (612664) on Monday March 25, 2013 @04:32PM (#43276085)

      This is what happens when an MBA type person runs a tech company. He thinks more about brand and reputation than being the best in the market. He thinks marketing and commercials can replace good products that offer great value.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I think that isn't right. Carl headed up sales at VMware for almost a decade. I think he just doesn't (or at least didn't) understand that Amazon isn't a bookseller. It's a tech giant with business and technical capabilities that are outside of VMware's core competencies and are going to be hard to match especially when they're laying off architect level infrastructure folks right and left.

      • Yeah that's what he thinks, because all those types of people are the same. Just like Asians and Black people...
    • by guttentag (313541)

      VMware COO Carl Eschenbach jumped on the Amazon theme, saying, "I look at this audience, and I look at VMware and the brand reputation we have in the enterprise, and I find it really hard to believe that we cannot collectively beat a company that sells books

      Amazon is as much about selling books as Pepsi is about selling sugared water [wikipedia.org].

    • by styrotech (136124)

      VMWare is completely lost if that is how they view their marketplace.

      Maybe that silly statement (which was made in context of their new cloud hosting plans) was intended to deflect attention away from what they are really frightened of.

      eg AWS isn't really much of a threat for VMWares existing enterprise customers, but OpenStack and MS Azure could end up being one due to hybrid public/private cloud stuff gaining some traction.

      I reckon there is a chance they are more nervous about Azure (MS) and OpenStack (De

    • I don't think that quote is literal. It's CEO trash talking at a conference. He obviously knows Amazon is a competitor and not just a book seller.

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