EMC Vows to Keep VMware - EnterpriseStorageForum.com

EMC Vows to Keep VMware

EMC (NYSE: EMC) says it plans to hang on to its VMware (NYSE: VMW) subsidiary, even as Cisco Systems (NASDAQ: CSCO) has been rumored to be interested in acquiring the server virtualization leader (see Could Cisco Buy VMware?).

Joe Tucci, CEO of data storage giant EMC, said at an analyst event yesterday that the company has "no intention" of selling its roughly 84 percent stake in the virtualization company.

"We will get more traction and more opportunities doing it the way we're doing it," said Tucci.

That has long been EMC's position on VMware, but reports of Cisco's interest — and large cash position — raised speculation that EMC might change its mind. But with VMware shares trading more than 50 percent below their August 2007 IPO price, it would be difficult for EMC to sell now after holding onto its stake at much higher prices.

Meanwhile, Cisco is expected to enter the server business next week, and a partnership with VMware could be part of that announcement.

EMC's renewed vow comes as the company unveils new tools for managing VMware environments. EMC today will announce that it is adding support for VMware to its Smarts automated root-cause analysis technology, which the company says adds a critical piece for managing and diagnosing problems in virtual environments and understanding the relationship between virtual servers, physical servers and the network.

The offering has been available as a professional service for two years, but EMC is now making it generally available.

"Everyone's spending a lot more time than they'd like to just keeping the lights on," said John Siegal, EMC's director of product marketing for resource management software. The offering means that high-level IT employees won't have to spend their time "babysitting consoles," he said.

EMC Smarts Server Manager pricing starts at $30,000 for current Smarts customers, based on the number of managed domains and devices.

Also at yesterday's analyst event, Tucci said sales of solid state flash drives (SSD) have been strong, and he added that the company will continue to develop the technology. And he said EMC is also working on enterprise search and compliance technology.

Solid state drives have been very much in the news this week, with HP (NYSE: HPQ), Pillar Data Systems and Sun (NASDAQ: JAVA) announcing solid state storage offerings.

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