Virtual and distributed computing technology and applications
Ken Novak's Weblog
Monday, November 27, 2006
VMware Reporting Huge Growth in 3Q 2006:
"The company's revenue continues to climb. For the first half of 2006, VMware reported its revenue as $288 million. Compare this to the annual revenue recognized in 2005 - $387 million, 2004 - $218 million, and 2003 - $100 million, the growth is staggering. [approx 6x in 3 years.] More than 20,000 companies now [use] VMware technology, including 99 of the Fortune 100 companies" 12:19:36 AM
Server Virtualization Becoming Norm: "Server
virtualization no longer has the same cache it did a year or two ago.
And the reason is simple: Now that everybody is starting to do it,
there is nothing to boast about. According to IDC, more than
three-quarters of companies with 500 or more employees use virtual
servers, and 45 percent of all new servers purchased this year will be
virtualized." 12:16:26 AM
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Hackers Use Virtual Machine Detection To Foil Researchers:
Funny benefit for users of virtual machines -- if you run a vm, increasing amounts of malware will refuse to run. "Hackers are adding virtual machine detection to their worms and Trojans to stymie analysis by anti-virus labs, a security research said Sunday. The tactic is designed to thwart researchers who use virtualization software, notably that made by VMware, to quickly and safely test the impact of malicious code. .. "Three out of 12 malware specimens recently captured in our honeypot refused to run in VMware," said Lenny Zeltser, an analyst at SANS Institute's Internet Storm Center (ISC) in an online note Sunday.
Malware writers use a variety of techniques to detect virtualization, including sniffing out the presence of VMware-specific processes and hardware characteristics, said Zeltser. "More reliable techniques rely on assembly-level code that behaves differently on a virtual machine than on a physical host," he added. " 4:55:43 PM
Monday, November 06, 2006
Microsoft debuts virtual appliances:
Following VMware's lead in promoting software appliances, Microsoft is promoting the idea among its third-party developers for its Virtual Server VHD (virtual hard disk) format. "More than twenty Microsoft partners have already committed to
distributing software via VHD Test Drive Program by the end of the
year, including Altiris, BEA Systems, Check Point, Citrix, CA,
CommVault, Dell, FullArmor, HP, Network Appliance, Platespin, Portlock,
Quest Software, SourceCode Technology Holdings, Symantec and UGS." I wonder how Microsoft will finesse the licensing of their operating system in this format. 10:29:34 PM
For PG&E customers, it pays to virtualize:
A major California utility creates an incentive for saving energy through server consolodation with virtualization. "They said the company had recently approved a three-year, $950 million plan whereby PG&E will reimburse 50% of the costs of a server consolidation project, including software, hardware and consulting, up to a maximum of $4 million per customer.
"We will calculate the energy consumed by existing servers and subtract the difference in the energy consumed by the new servers," said Randall Cole, senior project manager for PG&E's Customer Energy Efficiency program. "Then we'll pay 8 cents for every kWh saved over the first year of the server virtualization implementation." Electricity rates for PG&E's non-residential customers currently stand at 12 cents to 15 cents per kWh. ..
What's in this incentive plan for PG&E? The motives are fairly obvious: "We don't want to build any more power plants," said Bramfitt. At the same time, "regulators have told us loud and clear that we need to meet certain energy efficiency goals," he said. "We want customers to save energy, and we will pay them to do so." ..
"Virtualization isn't mainstream yet, and once it ramps up, I'm not going to incent it anymore," Bramfitt said. "But, in the meantime, I'm going to do whatever I can to light a fire under peoples' butts."" Nice to see a coincidence between my interests in energy efficiency and my main work in computers. And I wish I knew more about how the electric utilities are regulated in California, so they make money with this program, compared to other states where they do not. 10:25:11 PM