Sep 28, 2007 (12:09 PM EDT)
Embotics Manages Both Running And Offline Virtual Machines

Read the Original Article at InformationWeek

As demand for virtual machines increases, so does the possibility of generating them ad hoc, then losing track of them. Controlling virtual machine "sprawl" is a problem that's beginning to be addressed by tools like startup Embotics' V-Commander.

Embotics came out of its development phase for a public debut at VMworld in San Francisco earlier this month. It's V-Commander will manage both running virtual machines and stored images of virtual machines.

If the operating system in both running and offline virtual machines needs to be patched, V-Commander can see that both bases are covered, VP of marketing David Lynch said in an interview. Updating running virtual machines is typically a top priority. Catching up with those that are stored on disk has been a loose end of virtual machine management, he said.

The tool has a built-in repository for storing core virtual machine images and ensuring that a family of virtual machines evolves from a common base for easier maintenance.

It can provide operational oversight of running VMs and govern their startup and provisioning with a centralized set of policies. The policies might dictate that virtual machines using lots of input/output in the middle of the day not be paired with virtual machines that must support unpredictable amounts of Web traffic throughout the day.

V-Commander can be used in conjunction with a partner's product, PlateSpin's PowerRecon Virtual Infrastructure. The PlateSpin product discovers a data center's server and software assets, including virtual machines, and determines their workloads.

The results of such a survey can be used to help set policies that are then enforced by V-Commander. The product can apply such policies to the virtual machines running in multiple VMware Virtual Centers, VMware's management system. Some VMware users end up activating multiple Virtual Centers, noted Lynch.

V-Commander will be generally available in the fourth quarter at a price of $25,000.