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Virtual Iron muscling into virtualisation market

Virtual Iron muscling into virtualisation market

US-based virtualisation vendor Virtual Iron has signed MPA to be its local distributor, as part of an aggressive push against market leader VMWare.

Virtual Iron’s Melbourne-based systems engineer, Stephen Madden, says his firm has “abrasive marketing around price” and that the features and functionality of its virtualisation software are comparable to VMWare.

“Machine virtualisation is the biggest bang for our buck and we can do it at about a fifth of the cost of the big guys,” he claims.

Madden says Virtual Iron achieves cost savings by leveraging open source and supporting hardware virtualisation technology from Intel (Intel VT) and AMD (AMD-V).

He says the savings will be a boost for smaller firms who want to virtualise.

“The first wins for Virtual Iron in Australia have been in the small and medium business side, where they’ve been priced out with the traditional offerings that are available.”

He also says it is an advantage that Virtual Iron has entered the market after VMWare. “We had a good look at what they developed. They don’t leverage the hardware capabilities.”

VMWare ANZ managing director Paul Harapin is unfazed by Virtual Iron’s push, claiming the functionality of Virtual Iron’s offering is limited.

“The technology is nowhere near the generation or maturity that ours has. What they’re bringing out is a hypervisor, which is what we developed in 2001.”

Harapin argues price is low on the list of considerations for virtualisation customers behind scalability and capability.

“They can claim whatever they want. Price isn’t anywhere near the top of the consideration when a company can see the technology isn’t even as good as what we had in 2001.”

Madden says his company signed MPA because of its experience in virtualisation technology.

MPA enterprise director Roly Smoldon says it has been focused on server-based computing for more than 20 years. “One of our core strengths is around bringing applications back to the datacentre. Virtual Iron is a logical fit with where we’ve been and where we’re going.”

Smoldon says MPA also has a track record of building market awareness for vendors.

Virtual Iron used seminars in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch to educate the channel about its offerings.

Virtual Iron has distributors in Hong Kong, Korea and Singapore and wants to continue to grow in North America and Europe.


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