Automatically manage virtual disks
Vizioncore refreshes the parts VMware doesn't reach
Comment May 2nd, 2009

I recently finished a review of Vizioncore vOptimizer Pro 2.1, which has been published on ZDnet. The suite will be a great help to many IT managers because it automatically adjusts the size of the virtual hard disks of VMs running Windows and hosted on VMware ESX Server.

As we reported earlier, several third party utilities that work with ESX Server do not yet work with the embedded ESXi hypervisor. But putting that little gripe aside for a moment, it strikes me as surprising that VMware does not provide this type of tool as part of vCenter Server.

VMware executives openly acknowledge that simply selling a hypervisor is no longer enough to guarantee success. As one VMware chief said to me recently, “hypervisors are not interesting any more, all the vendors have them”. Nowadays, vendors compete on the basis of the quality of their management suites.

While VMware’s recently announced vSphere sounds compelling, for many people it is pie in the sky. Not everyone wants to outsource the hosting of their VMs. Many more VMware customers would probably want features such as automatic virtual disk management.

While the Vizioncore suite does a good job managing virtual hard disks from Windows based VMs, it does nothing for VMs running Linux or other operating systems. Similarly, vOptimizer Pro seems a little immature. For example, as my review points out, some of the error messages could do with improvement.

Surely it’s time VMware fleshed out vCenter with decent implementations of features such as automatic virtual disk management that cater for Linux and Windows VMs and don’t force customers to buy a mixture of software from various third parties?

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