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Top 5 VMware news stories of 2010

VMware had a very busy 2010. The company made lots of headlines, but what were the biggest VMware news stories of the year? Join us as we count them down.

By Colin Steele, Senior Site Editor

VMware was all over the news in 2010 as the company continued its evolution into a major IT player. For evidence of VMware's growing stature, one need look no further than VMworld 2010, which attracted a record 17,000 attendees. The company had several major releases in 2010, including vSphere 4.1 and vCloud Director.

But not all the VMware news was good. Product delays and licensing changes ruffled customers' feathers at different points throughout 2010.

This list of the top five VMware news stories of 2010 includes readers' most popular articles and the issues that affected users most.

5. VMware to support Hyper-V?
VMware talks a lot about being open, but the company is pretty focused on its own products, especially when it comes to its hypervisor. That might be changing, according to some hidden code in vSphere 4.1.

In October, virtualization blogger William Lam uncovered a string of commands that can detect whether Microsoft Hyper-V or Citrix XenServer are running as guest hypervisors on vSphere. The code got everyone talking, as users wondered if VMware support for Hyper-V and XenServer would become a reality. It hasn't yet, but there's always the next version of vSphere.

4. vSphere 4.1 released
VMware released vSphere 4.1 in June. In vSphere 4.1, VMware threw a few bones to small and medium-sized businesses -- notably by adding vMotion in the Essentials Plus and Standard editions. The company also made improvements to the Storage and Network I/O Control features, which help users set resource priorities.

Users welcomed these new features and changes, but some had hoped VMware would focus more on improving the management capabilities in vSphere.

3. vCloud Director debuts at VMworld
The big news at this summer's VMworld 2010 conference was the long-anticipated release of vCloud Director.

With vCloud Director, VMware finally offered a tangible product to go along with its cloud computing vision of the past several years. Execs pushed it as a tool for creating and managing Infrastructure as a Service architectures, but experts were quick to point out that vCloud Director requires many other components -- including an Oracle database, Red Hat Enterprise Linux operating system and other VMware management tools -- to work properly.

2. vCenter products go to per-VM licensing, pricing
Typically, VMware users buy and license vCenter products on a per-processor basis. That changed late this year, when VMware's new per-VM licensing and pricing model went into effect.

VMware announced per-VM pricing and licensing in June, concurrently with the release of vSphere 4.1. The company said the change would more closely align costs with usage, but it generated much debate among VMware users.

Some thought the new model would diminish the cost savings of server virtualization, but others said it would give them more flexibility. Per-VM licensing and pricing applies to vCenter Capacity IQ, vCenter AppSpeed, vCenter Site Recovery Manager and the Ionix management line acquired from EMC.

1. View 4.5 loses profile management
Expectations were high after VMware acquired RTO Software in February and promised to add RTO's profile management technology to the next release of VMware View, its flagship desktop virtualization product.

But in June, VMware released a View 4.5 beta that did not include profile management. Users learned that the feature wouldn't be in the general release either, and that the general release would be delayed. Not good times.

VMware finally released View 4.5 at VMworld and said it would include RTO's profile management technology in future versions.

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