Google fires back at VMware about virtualization for cloud computing

At VMworld Europe 2009, the VMware CEO Paul Maritz addressed the Google approach to cloud computing saying that virtualization is the only viable way.
Specifically he said: they don’t realize that they scale so well only by redesigning their applications and hardware

Google answered yesterday, after the worldwide press continues to obsessively covering the cloud computing topic as the new hype of the year (you know, green computing is surpassed now).

“…We serve tens of millions of users, so we’ve had to build infrastructure that scales and can run extremely efficiently to support that load. Consider three areas of data center design: server design, energy efficiency, and scale of operations.
In the virtualization approach of private data centers, a company takes a server and subdivides it into many servers to increase efficiency. We do the opposite by taking a large set of low cost commodity systems and tying them together into one large supercomputer. We strip down our servers to the bare essentials, so that we’re not paying for components that we don’t need. For example, we produce servers without video graphics chips that aren’t needed in this environment.

Additionally, enterprise hardware components are designed to be very reliable, but they can never be 100% reliable, so enterprises spend a lot of time and money on maintenance. In contrast, we expect the hardware to fail, and design for reliability in the software such that, when the hardware does fail, customers are just shifted to another server. This allows us to further lower the cost of our servers by using commodity parts and on-board storage. We also design the systems for easy repair such that, if a part fails, we can quickly bring the server back into service.

 By building the reliability into the software, we’re able to use a much lower cost hardware platform but still maintain the same reliability to customers.

The era of delayed gratification is over – the Internet allows innovations to be delivered as a constant flow that incorporates user needs, offers faster cycles for IT, and enables integration with systems that were not previously possible. This makes major upgrades a thing of the past, and gives the customer greater and greater value for their money.

As companies weigh private data centers vs. scalable clouds, they should ask a simple question: can I find the same economics, ease of maintenance, and pace of innovation that is inherent in the cloud?…”


Full article here


Yesterday around 1:30 AM a Data Center in The Netherlands had air conditioning problems.  Temperature went so high that a big chunk of the hardware just fried!

Even with millions spent on hardware contracts, looks like the hardware vendors cannot supply enough servers to replace failed ones.  ‘They’ are looking to hire planes to ship stock!

Conclusion, there are still customers that haven’t got their servers back up 36 hours later!


Is this dependency with the hardware something that can be avoid with virtualization ??

I say yes, 3 times YES! Virtualization cuts the link between hardware and OS/Application, it is hardware agnostic!

Do we need another wake up call ?


About PiroNet

Didier Pironet is an independent blogger and freelancer with +15 years of IT industry experience. Didier is also a former VMware inc. employee where he specialised in Datacenter and Cloud Infrastructure products as well as Infrastructure, Operations and IT Business Management products. Didier is passionate about technologies and he is found to be a creative and a visionary thinker, expressing with passion and excitement, hopefully inspiring and enrolling people to innovation and change.
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