Symantec, Citrix Unveil New VI Package

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2008-06-10 Print this article Print

Symantec's data center management chief sees XenSource as a way to capture new data center customers.

LAS VEGAS-Symantec introduced its new Veritas Virtual Infrastructure enterprise product, developed in concert with Citrix Systems, at its Vision user conference June 10 here at the Venetian Hotel.

Veritas Virtual Infrastructure combines Symantec's Veritas Storage Foundation storage management capabilities with the server operations of Citrix XenServer.

This combination of technologies will give data center managers centralized control of both physical and virtual assets in the data center, said Rob Soderbery, senior vice president of the Data Center Management Group at Symantec.

The product is Symantec's first step toward extending storage management to other virtual environments.

Key features of Storage Foundation 5.0, based on Veritas' own Volume Manager and file system, include online storage management with heterogeneous operating system support (Solaris, Linux, HP-UX and AIX) and a broad set of qualified storage devices and arrays; centralized management of diverse applications, servers and storage; dynamic multipathing that enables I/O to be efficiently spread across multiple paths for path failure protection and fast failover; and dynamic storage tiering that enables data to be dynamically moved to different storage tiers to rapidly respond to changing business needs.

Citrix XenServer allows companies to deploy high-performance virtual machines rapidly and manage them and their related storage and networking resources from a single management console. Customized development is also possible because it is an open-source platform.

The new Veritas Virtual Infrastructure product will compete directly with similar products from VMware and Microsoft.

"Xen is a very interesting platform for virtualization, because it is a bare-metal virtualization," Soderbery told eWEEK. "It's also highly scalable. It's a great solution for the data center workloads. We're betting big on Xen here as a virtualization platform for integrating our own storage and virtualization technology. We can also offer complete Xen-based solutions for both Linux and Windows."

He continued, "Look, we're playing across the space of VMware, Xen, all the Unix flavors of virtualization, but we see Xen as a rising star."

This is because Xen is an open-source platform that allows Symantec engineers to deeply integrate their own storage technology into it, Soderbery said. This stands as opposed to the tightly proprietary VMware ESX and Microsoft Hyper-V.

"This gives us the opportunity to use all the infrastructure you'd use in the physical environment-high availability, high-performance storage access, etc.-all the features that are required for a real production-scale data center deployment," he said.

There are just so many things one can do with a closed, proprietary platform, Soderbery said.

"In fact, VMware hasn't been able to add functionality to their own platform as fast as they would like," he said with a smile.

Prior to Citrix's acquisition of XenSource in 2007, Symantec had a longstanding partnership with the open-source virtual server company.

"Symantec and XenSource share a common belief that customers want unified server and storage virtualization," Soderbery said.

Veritas Virtual Infrastructure is expected to be generally available in the fall of 2008 with pricing starting at $4,595 per two-socket server, Soderbery said.

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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