What Is VMware Cloud on AWS?

VMware and Amazon Web Services, as expected, announced and alliance today. The net result, called VMware Cloud on AWS, essentially means VMware's public cloud offerings will eventually run atop Amazon's cloud infrastructure.

According to the two companies:

"Most enterprises rely on VMware to run applications in their vSphere-based private clouds, and often these same customers are also running applications on AWS. Increasingly, these customers have asked both companies to make it easier to run their existing on-premises environments alongside AWS using the VMware software and tools they’ve come to rely on."

Moreover,  AWS will be VMware’s primary public cloud infrastructure partner and VMware will be AWS’s primary private cloud partner in new strategic alliance. Clearly, Amazon and VMware are striving to counter Microsoft's Azure public cloud and Windows Server private cloud technologies. 

The Amazon-VMware relationship sounds promising. But it also sounds like a work in progress. VMware Cloud on AWS won't arrive until mid-2017. Pricing hasn't been announced. The offering will be delivered, sold, and supported by VMware as an on-demand, elastically scalable service, the companies said.

The big question: Can we expect an associated channel partner program? We're checking.

VMware Product Evolution

Take a closer look at the announcement, and you'll notice the new cloud services will support VMware's core technologies  -- particularly VMware vSphere, VMware Virtual SAN and NSX. The overall system will run on next-generation, elastic, bare metal AWS infrastructure.   

Ross Brown
Ross Brown

VMware essentially punted on its own, solo public cloud efforts last year. The company recently sold off its government-centric cloud assets. Most of the company's current focus involves multi-cloud management, rather than competing head-on against AWS and Microsoft Azure.

The company's VSAN and NSX offerings, in particular, are seeing strong growth in the market. Channel Chief Ross Brown overhauled the company's partner program earlier this year to drive more partners toward those products.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.