10 big virtualization and cloud stories from 2013

2013 saw big news around acquisitions, community takeovers, new products, new markets, product deaths, and more FUD

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9. Citrix enters mobile virtualization and mobile device management

As a smartphone owner and a virtualization enthusiast, I've tried to keep up with the industry's mobile virtualization initiatives -- specifically those coming out of Citrix and VMware.

VMware has been talking about it for years -- and it sounds great! Let's use virtualization to separate a smartphone device into two parts: one for work and the other for personal. That way people don't have to carry around two devices, and both sides can make sure to secure the user and the company sides from one another.

In February, Citrix introduced its product, called XenMobile MDM (mobile device management), which was part of a new Mobile Solutions Bundle for EMM (enterprise mobility management). It was also an enterprise mobile-device management solution designed to let end-users easily connect to their apps and data from their device of choice, while equipping IT with tools to manage and enforce compliance requirements on mobile devices.

XenMobile MDM lets end-users self-provision their devices, while letting IT provision policies and apps to large groups of devices automatically. In addition, it lets IT blacklist or whitelist apps, detect and protect against jailbroken devices, and wipe or selectively wipe devices that are lost, stolen, or out of compliance. It also integrates directly with Microsoft Active Directory, PKI systems, and security information and event management tools.

The technology still doesn't seem to have the uptake that these vendors were hoping it would have.

10. PayPal's "rip and replace" of VMware for OpenStack much ado about nothing

Early in the year, one of the stories that caused a fair amount of eyebrow raising was news that PayPal -- and perhaps even its parent company eBay -- was ditching VMware in favor of OpenStack. Looking back, that seems somewhat crazy given the current maturity of the OpenStack platform even today, and this was nearly 10 months ago!

Some media outlets reported that 80,000 servers at PayPal were getting an overhaul with OpenStack technology rather than remaining with VMware.

In the original news item, there was an underlying assumption that VMware and OpenStack do the same things. The story made it sound as if a customer, in this case PayPal, could choose one technology over the other. In fact, we know things aren't that simple. Yes, PayPal could have chosen to use OpenStack rather than VMware vCloud, but that doesn't mean it had to rip out or discontinue use of VMware vSphere, VMware's flagship moneymaker.

This story received a lot of play across a number of different media sites and publications. The battle between OpenStack and VMware was once again ignited, in spite of the fact that VMware was now a board member on the OpenStack Foundation, and the company was making sure its ESX hypervisor was a working part of the OpenStack cloud environment.

In the end, this seemed to be a continuation of the back-and-forth banter taking place between some in the OpenStack community and VMware as to which cloud environment would prevail.

This time, the company whose employee was involved with the original FUD of the article came out and said the person who started it was "exaggerating the use case," and quietly put an end to things -- after a few weeks' worth of articles had already been written on the topic.

So what happens next? Do OpenStack and VMware ultimately play well together?

These news stories were just the tip of the iceberg. 2013 was a great year to be a part of the virtualization and cloud computing market, and I can't wait to see what 2014 has in store for all of us.

What news item stood out in your mind from last year?

This article, "10 big virtualization and cloud stories from 2013," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in virtualization and cloud computing at InfoWorld.com.

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