VMware Launches Database as a Service

At VMworld 2011 VMware announces vFabric Data Director, a new Database as a Service (DAAS) solution for the enterprise.

VMware has announced vFabric Data Director, a new platform to deliver a Database as a Service solution for the enterprise.

Announced at the company's VMworld 2011 conference, vFabric Data Director presents a new database provisioning and operations solution designed to deliver a Database as a Service (DaaS) model for the enterprise. VMware's vFabric Data Director is an extension of the company's Cloud Application Platform strategy, said David McJannet, director of cloud and application services at VMware, in an interview with eWEEK. The solution enables IT to control and manage a growing set of heterogeneous databases through policy-based automation, while streamlining application development via a self-service provisioning model for developers to access the database services needed for modern applications.

Built on VMware vSphere, vFabric Data Director will also extend the benefits of virtualized infrastructures to the database tier, enabling optimization of resource utilization for increased operational efficiency and cost savings.

"Enterprises are increasingly challenged to manage the significant growth of data needed for modern applications while supporting critical application development initiatives," said Tod Nielsen, president of Application Platform at VMware, in a statement. "Today, VMware is advancing its ongoing cloud application platform strategy by delivering innovative data access and management services that more efficiently serve today's applications and establish a foundation for next generation, cloud era applications."

To address this changing nature of applications - including web, cloud, social and mobile platforms -- VMware is investing in a complete cloud application platform, including new developer frameworks, application and data services and new cloud based Platform as a Service (PAAS) delivery models that promise to significantly increase developer productivity and operational efficiency while enabling access to the broadest range of infrastructure services from VMware, third parties and the open source community.

Indeed, VMware is advancing the modern cloud application platform, extending the Spring community of Java developers with key framework

innovations, delivering a core set of cloud application services including messaging and in-memory data services, and introducing Cloud Foundry, the company's Open PAAS.

With exponential growth in data to support today's applications, enterprises increasingly suffer from "database sprawl," the proliferation of under-managed, under-secured and even unknown databases across the IT organization. vFabric Data Director will establish a policy driven model for driving consistent security, data protection and resource consumption across an enterprise's database portfolio. Automating routine database operations via standardized policies and best practices will enable database administrators to focus on higher value initiatives while laying the foundation for a self-service database model for developers.

Moreover, developers will be able to access vFabric Data Director via a web-based portal to gain self-service access to a broad range of database services to serve their specific needs, McJannet said

In a 2008 report entitled "Database As A Service Explodes on the Scene," Forrester Research analyst Noel Yuhanna, said:

""Enterprises must support hundreds or even thousands of applications to meet growing business demands, but this growth is dramatically driving up the cost of running and managing the databases under those applications. The stress this puts on the IT budget makes it harder to provide databases to support new requirements such as Web 2.0 applications or other emerging collaboration solutions or even to support more mundane uses such as increased application testing. A new emerging option called database as a service (DAAS) hosts databases in the cloud and is a good fit for some new apps.""

The first database supported on Data Director is VMware vFabric Postgres, a new offering from VMware based on and fully compatible with PostgreSQL, McJannet said. PostgreSQL is an enterprise class database, with a long history of mission-critical customer adoption and support from a vibrant open source community.

VMware has also completed specific optimizations of vFabric Postgres for the vSphere environment. vFabric Postgres' elastic database memory dynamically adapts to changing workloads to achieve greater memory efficiency and higher consolidation ratios. Dynamic checkpoint tuning and the ability to automatically match VM parameters for optimal performance and resource usage, further establish vFabric Postgres as an optimal database choice for vSphere environments.

PostgreSQL is the first database supported, however, "We're investigating a series of databases," McJannet said. "Certainly we'll be adding more databases in the future." VMware plans to expand vFabric Data Director support beyond PostgreSQL, extending the common provisioning and operations model to the broadest range of commercial and open source databases, the company said.

"Sybase, an SAP Company, and VMware have a common vision that customers' new application demands and cloud deployment pursuits are changing the database market from both an architectural and delivery perspective," said Raj Nathan, executive vice president and chief marketing officer at Sybase, in a statement. "VMware vFabric Data Director will help deliver both traditional as well as new database technologies as a service for enterprises. We look forward to working closely with VMware as a preferred partner to deliver Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise a leading database solution through VMware vFabric Data Director."

"The introduction of VMware's vFabric Data Director represents a powerful innovation at the intersection of cloud, virtualization, and data," said Bill Cook, president of Greenplum - a division of EMC, in a statement. "We are thrilled to have collaborated with VMware, and excited about the role that the vFabric Data Director technology plays in our enterprise data cloud product offering: Greenplum Chorus."

vFabric Data Director also extends the benefits of virtual infrastructure to the database tier, reducing operating costs through automation of database provisioning, backup, restore, cloning and monitoring.

"Making it easier for Tier 3' Enterprise Cloud customers to manage the complexities of their data is core to our Database as a Service strategy," said Jared Wray, founder and CTO at Tier 3, in a statement. "VMware vFabric Data Director overcomes many of the challenges our customers face in moving to self-service databases in the cloud and represents a real step forward in technology that empowers Database as a Service."

vFabric Data Director will be available for download in the third quarter of 2011 at a list price of $600 per managed virtual machine. vFabric Postgres is available in conjunction with Data Director. And vFabric Postgres is also now available on CloudFoundry.com, VMware officials said.