Wednesday, April 28, 2010

More on VMForce

As expected, VMware and Salesforce unveiled more details on VMForce offering yesterday:
VMForce is a service that allows developers write any Java applications using SpringSource framework (AOP-based programming model and reflective abstraction, SpringSource Tool Suite, SpringSource TC Server), and deploy to a virtual environment using vCloud.  The deployed code runs on infrastructure and virtualized and managed using vSphere.
You can read the key announcements at the following:
At first glance, the model looks very similar to SpringSource CloudFoundry offering which facilitates implementation and management of application on AWS.   There is a difference.  With CloudFoundry, VMware virtualization is not involved, as Amazon uses Xen
This is good for VMware and SpringSource.  With such moves, they are aggressively  moving to position SpringSource as a “common application stack”.  As enterprises increase the migration of their workloads to the Cloud, VMware/SpringSource can be a great enabler offering value-adds such as preventing vendor lock-in, code & skills portability, etc…
As I mentioned in my previous post, this is also good for Salesforce, because it enables them to host non-CRM related apps on their platform. 
The only question that I am struggling with is the revenue model/rev share. pricing is clear and VMForce should help them increase subscribers. However, I am not sure how VMware will be able to make a sustainable business out of this, especially since SpringSource (open-source, cloud infrastructure, etc).   As far as I know, the CloudFoundry pricing is still unknown.  
How do you view in comparison to Azure and GAE?  Microsoft & Google own both the infrastructure and the application middleware.  It seems to me that application framework and tooling would not be the major revenue contributors. Thoughts/comments?

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