iShift Halloween post

1998: VMware and the Virtualization Revolution

Without a doubt, virtualization technology has become a cornerstone in modern IT infrastructure. It enables organizations to optimize resources, enhance flexibility, and streamline management processes. It is constantly evolving and will remain a fundamental component of data center and cloud computing strategies.

The benefits of virtualization boil down to the following:

  • Cost Efficiency: Consolidating multiple virtual machines on a single physical server reduces hardware costs, power consumption, and space requirements.
  • Flexibility and Scalability: Virtualization allows for easy scaling of resources, making it simpler to adapt to changing workloads or business needs.
  • Improved Disaster Recovery: Virtualization facilitates the creation of snapshots and backups of virtual machines, making it easier to recover in case of hardware failures, natural disasters, or other catastrophes.

From its foundation in 1998, VMware has always been a trailblazer and innovator in the field of virtualization. Since its establishment in 2004 iShift has been closely aligned with both the company and the technology. Over the years we have partnered with VMware on multiple projects related to the system design and implementation of virtualized environments for organizations of different sizes and sectors. In the past, we attained several VMware certifications, including VMware Master Services Competency in Data Center Virtualization. We were also awarded VMware Professional Services Organization (PSO) Subcontractor status as an acknowledgement of our proficiency as VMware subject matter experts.

2023: The Broadcom Acquisition

In November 2023, VMware completed its acquisition by Broadcom after a considerable delay due to regulators’ concerns. Soon after the deal closed, the company eliminated the perpetual licensing of vSphere and Cloud Foundation and moved exclusively to subscription-based models. At the end of February, Broadcom announced its intent to sell VMware’s end-user compute unit to KKR, a private equity firm that focuses on technology acquisitions.

It goes without saying, all these shifts are making VMware customers anxious. A number of organizations have turned to us for advice on how to handle the changes in licensing and the broader direction of their virtualization strategy moving forward.

Implications for VMware Customers

Over the past couple of years, since Broadcom’s bid for VMware became public, we devoted several articles on the subject. We know we are competent to discuss the topic given the years of experience we have in all matters pertaining to virtual environments.

Early on, we pointed out some encouraging indications that Broadcom was likely to take advantage of VMware’s extensive partner network to service the company’s 300,000-plus customer base. While Broadcom has made it clear that it will be focusing on VMware’s top 2,000 customers worldwide, planning to do away with an estimated $650M in channel margins, we projected that service partners such as iShift have a solid opportunity to engage with clients who will continue to maintain some VMware installations and require robust support resources.

We were right. Over the past year, we engaged with organizations of different industries and sizes in need of updating their virtual infrastructure. Moreover, our clients can continue to rely on our team to get uninterrupted support and quality of service. As a long-time VMware partner, we know the product suite inside out, and our team will help you figure things out for the long term.

Viable VMware Alternatives

At the same time, we need to acknowledge the reality that technology is continuously evolving. With that in mind, we also devoted a post providing advice how companies can tighten their relationship with a versatile partner that not only can support VMware, but also knows Cloud, Nutanix, and other modern infrastructure options.

iShift’s highly experienced and knowledgeable professionals can provide expert guidance so organizations can best meet their digital transformation goals.

Last year, we focused on identifying some of the challenges VMware customers looking for alternatives face. Exploring alternatives should be done thoughtfully, considering the complexities and costs associated with any migration. In addition, the broader picture needs to be considered. We urge companies to consult experts who have dealt with similar projects as they can save them a lot of headaches. To help organizations that are looking for guidance and different options, we have designed a new highly customizable offering that aims at diversifying their virtual environments for enhanced performance and agility.

Transition to Hybrid or Multi-Cloud Strategies

Recently, we did a survey among clients about their long-term virtualization strategy and the reasons they would consider a migration from VMware. The typical responses weren’t terribly surprising. In fact, they make a lot of sense in the context of recent VMware developments.

It is important to emphasize the fact that technology is in constant motion. Furthermore, data centers are changing more than ever. The VMware acquisition coincides with a shift in corporate strategy toward adopting a hybrid or multi-cloud architecture for increased flexibility and scalability.

For example, Azure and Nutanix offer attractive options for organizations that are looking to expand their VMware environment with a multi-vendor strategy, are migrating from VMware, or want to extend their cloud presence.

While the argument that a hybrid-cloud environment can add complexity to the organization’s IT infrastructure, it also enhances risk management and provides more flexibility. Moreover, businesses have the independence to decide where their data resides taking into account considerations such as performance, security, and compliance mandates. As a team that is knowledgeable in all these technologies, we are able to assist you every step of the way.

Vendor Relationships and Reliable Support

VMware customers who remember Broadcom’s acquisitions of CA and Symantec are apprehensive about pricing, product development, and support services moving forward. They have reasons to be concerned. Since closing the deal in 2023, Broadcom has taken quick and significant actions to introduce changes aimed at dramatically increasing VMware’s profitability in the next three years at the expense of their customers. The majority of measures involve slashing costs: layoffs, changes in product bundling and licensing models, channel contract cancellations, and a direct sales focus solely on the top 2,000 customers. It is not surprising that our clients are wondering whether they may be thrown under the bus with respect to future support.

There is no denying that the Broadcom acquisition marks a significant shift in company culture for VMware, and we appreciate that our clients are posing important questions and seeking our informed advice on how to navigate the changes. While uncertainties about VMware’s new trajectory post-acquisition abound, our clients can rest assured that our team will provide the support and quality service they require.

As a longstanding partner of VMware, we possess an in-depth understanding of the product suite, and our team is committed to assisting you in navigating the evolving landscape.

The Allure of Open Source

As virtualization became the foundation for modern IT infrastructures, more and more companies are abandoning vendor lock-in in favor of open-source alternatives. Solutions like Red Hat Virtualization and OpenStack provide greater flexibility and control over their virtualization environment at a much lower cost. This factor is becoming even more relevant now that VMware has eliminated its perpetual licensing in favor of exclusively subscription-based models.

The allure of open-source virtualization over proprietary solutions is the result of the following benefits:

  • Cost & Portability: Open-source virtualization is free to use, modify, and distribute under their respective licenses. In addition, open-source technology allows for easy portability and integration of data, as well as better compatibility with third-party software.
  • Flexibility & Integration: Open-source virtualization is more customizable and flexibile regarding the choice of various components based on specific needs. It also integrates well with various tools and technologies and makes it easier to build a customized IT infrastructure.
  • Community Support & Ecosystem: Open-source projects rely on a sizeable community of developers and users who contribute to their improvement and provide broad documentation, tutorials, and support. This also provides organizations the freedom to patch components at their own pace.

Consider iShift Your Trusted Advisor in Your Virtualization Strategy

With a rich history as a pioneer in virtualization solutions, we bring unparalleled experience and expertise to every migration project.

We prioritize security and ensure that the migration process aligns with the highest standards of data protection.

We understand the importance of regulatory compliance and tailor our virtualization solutions to meet the specific compliance requirements of your industry.

Our in-depth knowledge and understanding of licensing models make navigating the complex landscape of perpetual and subscription-based licensing easy.

In addition, we remain committed to our clients at every step and will providing ongoing support to address any issues or concerns that may arise post-migration.

Our transparent communication and collaborative efforts ensure that organizations are actively involved throughout their migration journey.

We believe in providing clear and transparent cost structures that empower organizations to make informed decisions.

We have a proven track record of hundreds of successfully executed virtualization implementations and migrations that stand as a testament to our commitment to client satisfaction.

Embrace the future of virtualization with confidence as we guide you to the next level of your virtualization strategy and unlock new opportunities for productivity, flexibility, and innovation. In a world where digital transformation is key to success, iShift is your trusted partner for a seamless transition towards enhanced performance and agility.

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