By Kevin Komiega
—VMware will kick off its annual VMworld user conference this week with some new additions to its server virtualization platform, including an automated disaster-recovery tool, a virtual desktop infrastructure manager, and a next-generation hypervisor for VMware ESX Server 3i that will be embedded in server hardware.
The new VMware Site Recovery Manager, which is billed as a tool that improves an organization's ability to recover from outages, gives VMware Infrastructure 3 users the ability to automate the setup, testing, and execution of recovery plans for their data centers.
VMware has determined that disaster recovery is one of the main reasons companies are adopting the VMware virtual infrastructure platform. "Virtualization is becoming a standard way to deploy servers and storage," says Jon Bock, VMware's senior manager of product marketing. "We're making it easier for customers to use storage technologies by making management tools virtualization-aware," he says.
Bock adds that Site Recovery Manager gives users a single point of control for all aspects of DR in VMware environments. Customers can use VMware Site Recovery Manager to create, configure, and manage recovery plans, perform automated, non-disruptive testing of fail-over scenarios, and automatically execute DR plans in the event of an outage.
Site Recovery Manager will be offered to VMware customers as an add-on product. Pricing has yet to be determined.
VMware is also making news on the server side with the launch of VMware ESX Server 3i, a thin hypervisor to be integrated with servers from a variety of vendors. ESX Server 3i is a bare-metal hypervisor that will be embedded directly into the server hardware. The software can partition a physical server into multiple secure and portable virtual machines.
Bock says building VMware's virtualization into hardware will speed the time to deployment of virtual infrastructures and allow users to boot up a server and immediately begin using the virtualization technology.
Hardware vendors are expected to begin shipping ESX Server 3i within their products by year-end.
VMware is also extending its line of desktop virtualization products with VMware Virtual Desktop Manager, a "connection broker" used to connect remote clients to centralized desktops in a VMware virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). Bock claims Virtual Desktop Manager features improved virtual desktop management and better security for enterprise users.