Late last week, and almost silently, Amazon unveiled a new service and connector that allows customers of VMware's vCenter to connect directly with Amazon Web Services. The intent, of course, is to get VMware's customers to start moving their on-premises VMs to Amazon. Amazon promoted the new service as a Hybrid Cloud offering, but truly Amazon doesn't quite understand what Hybrid Cloud means.
Amazon is an all-or-nothing Public Cloud provider that has never had to understand Enterprises. Like Google and others, Amazon wants to entice companies to use the Public Cloud without first understanding and addressing the barriers. Companies like VMware, on the other hand, have always had deep ties to the Enterprise, serving virtualization needs of companies for over 15 years.
Amazon's obvious hope is that by providing easy migration services for customers of leading virtualization vendors, they can somehow develop their own Hybrid Cloud strategy and at the same time compete for the Enterprise business.
VMware isn't fooled. In response to the Amazon release (without actually mentioning Amazon), Chris Wolf, CTO of VMware Americas, wrote back in a blog post: "Don’t be fooled by Import Tools disguised as Hybrid Cloud Management."
Chris' post goes on to take the high road by avoiding competitor bashing and instead laying out why VMware and VMware's vision of a true Hybrid Cloud keeps the company in the lead in the virtualization space. He also makes a very important point:
There is no easy way to move workloads back to one of your data centers, or to another cloud provider ... you cannot use your existing software licenses ... you cannot automate and orchestrate across private and public clouds ... you cannot enforce policy governance across multi-clouds ... you lose all of the seamless third party integrations deployed through the VMware Solution Exchange.
He also states that…
Anyone who has been in IT long enough knows how easy it is for a tactical Band-Aid to unexpectedly become a permanent solution. In the cloud era more than ever, you must think strategically about management. To date, proprietary service provider tools have created management silos that drive up total cost of ownership while increasing provider lock-in. There is a better way.
Microsoft has made steady inroad into VMware's business with its Hyper-V offering, but VMware still maintains a large lead in the Enterprise. Microsoft was also recently seen encroaching on Amazon's lead in the IaaS space, thanks to the latest Gartner Magic Quadrant report.