Microsoft: Rival, Partner

By Scott Ferguson  |  Posted 2008-09-30 Print this article Print

Is Microsoft the biggest challenge you face going forward? I mean, Citrix is doing some really interesting stuff. On the desktop side, they seem to be really competing against you strongly.

We have to look at a variety of people, but I think Microsoft is certainly the one that has the most ambitions across the board. So, in that sense, we have to pay attention to them.

And at the same time you also have to partner with Microsoft.

To an extent, because people are still running Windows Server 2008, and we have to make sure our solution works with Windows. And the essence of our solution is it works with existing applications-not just Windows, but Linux and other applications.

Linux is very important to the cloud and to this whole idea of the data center. What's your relationship now with Linux, and can you address whether VMware ESX is going to go open-source any time soon?

Those are two separate questions completely-they really are two different animals. We work with Linux vendors today. We're extending our support of Linux-we're working with both Red Hat and Novell in that regard.

Then, the second question about whether we should open-source ESX is really a separate decision. It's something we have thought about, and we don't shut the door on it.

But you've also said you really think you have to get your own products in order before you go down the open-source road.

That was really about, within this broader framework: To what extent do we support other hypervisors? And the answer is, in principle, we're not against supporting them; now we need to, as you said, get our basic challenges taken care of.

Can you explain to me how, if at all, your relationship with EMC will change? You did come over from EMC, and there's always been talk about how closely EMC wants to draw VMware into its fold. It seems like it would be great to have those two companies really close together, but, at the same time, you have to work with a lot of other storage vendors.

The bottom line is, I don't see any big change there. EMC fully appreciates that VMware needs to have a large degree of independence. I don't see that changing. And, of the challenges I look at, this is not one of the big ones.

No plans, then, to spin off VMware?

I'm not making any announcements on EMC's behalf.


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