Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: Zakia Bouachraoui, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: Agile Computing, Containers Expo Blog

Agile Computing: Article

Virtualization Security: VMware Crosses the Rubicon

Will The Netsec Industry Finally Wake Up to the Potential of Virtsec?

While the press and blogs are buzzing about cloud computing, VMware has made probably one of the most significant cloud-related announcements ever made; and with : vShield Zones has added even more distance between rivals when it comes to data center and cloud security.

Last year at VMworld in Cannes, VMware announced the VMsafe VMware security partner ecosystem. The virtualization security "industry" had been notably silent (other than a colorful row between security blogger/expert Chris Hoff and Citrix CTO Simon Crosby) for the rest of 2008. Virtualization expert Rich Miller even mentioned the sound of security silence at VMworld Las Vegas in September:

The theme I noted most at VMworld 2007 a year ago was "security."  This year, it seemed noticeably absent.  My sense is that the industry has yet to catch up and capitalize on VMsafe. Because all of the "next generation" of offerings from VMware and the independent providers are still in development, no one made too much of security issues.

The contrast between the Cannes security ecosystem exuberance and VMware crossing the Rubicon at VMworld Cannes 2009 marked a stunning and much needed shift in the virtualization space. It was the first serious step by any vendor towards a real solution for securing the cloud and moving data center virtualization deployments from virtualization-lite (hypervisor VLANs) to "rack and stack" cloud environments.

While Microsoft and Citrix make price adjustments VMware launches genuine innovation that could significantly change the economics of IT in production environments. Security is a critical differentiator when it comes to deploying virtualization in production data centers and creating cloud environments.

This move is not without risk, as VMware had invested great effort in lining up a security partner ecosystem which was kicked off the year before in Cannes, which I celebrated via an interview with Tarry Singh during my recent tenure at Blue Lane (which was acquired by VMware in 2008).

If the Blue Lane acquisition didn't send a chill down the spine of the network security industry, this announcement should. It signals a new era in security introduced, ironically, by a virtualization vendor. Despite the virtsec exuberance and optimism introduced by the new and novel security requirements, much of the network security industry was caught flat-footed. And that still seems to be the case.

Gartner VP Neil MacDonald summed it up with his recent blog about the traditional security vendors:

Many are clinging to business models based on their overpriced hardware-based solutions and not offering virtualized versions of their solutions. They are afraid of the inevitable disruption (and potential cannibalization) that virtualization will create.

The writing is on the wall for network security vendors who have elected to wait and see if the "cloud computing hype" is just a passing fad or are clinging to obsolete technology or business models. The vShield announcement could also a double-edged sword for the virtsec startup vendors: 1) who could be more isolated than ever from the virtsec momentum within VMware and yet 2) possibly more strategic now that VMware has played a real security card in the marketing battle.

With the VMware vShield Zones announcement, any vendor who thinks that virtualization and security are two separate and distinct matters is headed for the distinctive Club Maginot school of static security expertise. They are about to relive the fates of French officers watching German planes fly over the massive, integrated and ambitious French defense investment at one of its strongest points (in Belgium). The wall was designed for WW1 and was partly responsible for a rapid German conquest of France in early WW2.

Virtualization and cloud are introducing new demands on security, because they are introducing new, unprecedented levels of mobility and automation for systems and endpoints. The economic payoffs are so promising that cloud promises to have a substantial impact on the computing era. The question is, are those who think in terms of static networks (whether they are security or network vendors or pros) fully prepared for the requirements of Infrastructure 2.0?

Yet the increased velocity of change is also making the network itself more strategic and yet more challenged. This collision between automated systems and manually managed networks will produce significant opportunities for networking vendors and professionals who understand the power and opportunity of automation; and significant risks for those still riding the "kludge train" of manual reactions to the automation revolution now proliferating within the bowels of IT.

I am a senior director at Infoblox. You can follow my comments in real time at www.twitter.com/archimedius.

 

More Stories By Greg Ness

Gregory Ness is the VP of Marketing of Vidder and has over 30 years of experience in marketing technology, B2B and consumer products and services. Prior to Vidder, he was VP of Marketing at cloud migration pioneer CloudVelox. Before CloudVelox he held marketing leadership positions at Vantage Data Centers, Infoblox (BLOX), BlueLane Technologies (VMW), Redline Networks (JNPR), IntruVert (INTC) and ShoreTel (SHOR). He has a BA from Reed College and an MA from The University of Texas at Austin. He has spoken on virtualization, networking, security and cloud computing topics at numerous conferences including CiscoLive, Interop and Future in Review.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The platform combines the strengths of Singtel's extensive, intelligent network capabilities with Microsoft's cloud expertise to create a unique solution that sets new standards for IoT applications," said Mr Diomedes Kastanis, Head of IoT at Singtel. "Our solution provides speed, transparency and flexibility, paving the way for a more pervasive use of IoT to accelerate enterprises' digitalisation efforts. AI-powered intelligent connectivity over Microsoft Azure will be the fastest connected pat...
CloudEXPO has been the M&A capital for Cloud companies for more than a decade with memorable acquisition news stories which came out of CloudEXPO expo floor. DevOpsSUMMIT New York faculty member Greg Bledsoe shared his views on IBM's Red Hat acquisition live from NASDAQ floor. Acquisition news was announced during CloudEXPO New York which took place November 12-13, 2019 in New York City.
BMC has unmatched experience in IT management, supporting 92 of the Forbes Global 100, and earning recognition as an ITSM Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader for five years running. Our solutions offer speed, agility, and efficiency to tackle business challenges in the areas of service management, automation, operations, and the mainframe.
Apptio fuels digital business transformation. Technology leaders use Apptio's machine learning to analyze and plan their technology spend so they can invest in products that increase the speed of business and deliver innovation. With Apptio, they translate raw costs, utilization, and billing data into business-centric views that help their organization optimize spending, plan strategically, and drive digital strategy that funds growth of the business. Technology leaders can gather instant recomm...
In an age of borderless networks, security for the cloud and security for the corporate network can no longer be separated. Security teams are now presented with the challenge of monitoring and controlling access to these cloud environments, at the same time that developers quickly spin up new cloud instances and executives push forwards new initiatives. The vulnerabilities created by migration to the cloud, such as misconfigurations and compromised credentials, require that security teams t...
AI and machine learning disruption for Enterprises started happening in the areas such as IT operations management (ITOPs) and Cloud management and SaaS apps. In 2019 CIOs will see disruptive solutions for Cloud & Devops, AI/ML driven IT Ops and Cloud Ops. Customers want AI-driven multi-cloud operations for monitoring, detection, prevention of disruptions. Disruptions cause revenue loss, unhappy users, impacts brand reputation etc.
As you know, enterprise IT conversation over the past year have often centered upon the open-source Kubernetes container orchestration system. In fact, Kubernetes has emerged as the key technology -- and even primary platform -- of cloud migrations for a wide variety of organizations. Kubernetes is critical to forward-looking enterprises that continue to push their IT infrastructures toward maximum functionality, scalability, and flexibility. As they do so, IT professionals are also embr...
@CloudEXPO and @ExpoDX, two of the most influential technology events in the world, have hosted hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors since our launch 10 years ago. @CloudEXPO and @ExpoDX New York and Silicon Valley provide a full year of face-to-face marketing opportunities for your company. Each sponsorship and exhibit package comes with pre and post-show marketing programs. By sponsoring and exhibiting in New York and Silicon Valley, you reach a full complement of decision makers and buyers in ...
While the focus and objectives of IoT initiatives are many and diverse, they all share a few common attributes, and one of those is the network. Commonly, that network includes the Internet, over which there isn't any real control for performance and availability. Or is there? The current state of the art for Big Data analytics, as applied to network telemetry, offers new opportunities for improving and assuring operational integrity. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jim Frey, Vice President of S...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settl...