VMware updated its core virtualization platform — vSphere. One of the key improvements is that developers can now innovate applications in Docker containers, and then those containers can be deployed in vSphere environments within a virtual machine (VM).
The new vSphere Integrated Containers (VIC) functionality grabs Docker containers’ code, enabling the containers to run in vSphere.
“We’ve been looking at being able to deploy different apps on vSphere; existing apps and now cloud-native apps dealing with containers,” said Mike Adams, senior director of product marketing for the company’s cloud platform business unit. “Developers want to run Docker-based containers,” he said. “But operators who are familiar with VMs want to use what they’re familiar with.”
VMware decided to satisfy both parties by housing the Docker containers inside VMs. “A lot of customers want to have developers deploy containers, but by putting them in vSphere, they feel more comfortable,” said Adams.
In addition to the new Docker container functionality, VMware simplified the architecture of vCenter Server, which is “the brain of vSphere,” according to Adams. For version 6.5, the vCenter Server is transformed into a virtual appliance. And REST-based APIs create tie-ins to automate some of vSphere’s ability to deploy VMs. The tie-ins can also link to other third-party software in the environment.
VMware aims for the vCenter Server appliance to reduce operational complexity by embedding key functionality into a single virtual appliance. It offers simplified patching, upgrading, backup, and recovery.
Finally, VMware enhanced security for data and infrastructure. It now has the ability to encrypt VMs, whether the VMs are at rest or using a technology called vMotion, which enables the live migration of running VMs from one physical server to another.