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Enterprise IT has entered into a post-Windows era as traditional operating systems lose their place in a virtualisation and cloud dominated environment, according to VMware CEO, Paul Maritz.
Speaking at the virtualisation vendor's Partner Exchange 2011 event in Orlando, Florida, he touched on how virtualisation as a component of cloud computing has made IT more accessible and easier to manage.
As a result, IT must now be agile as well as efficient.
The proliferation of new devices such as the iPad running on Apple OS and smartphones using Android OS means it is no longer enough for organisations to provide user access to their clouds through Microsoft Windows-based PCs, which has been the standard for many years.
This is a hurdle IT managers must overcome.
“We're seeing the beginning, and it will be a long time, but it is the beginning of the end of that era,” Maritz said.
He highlighted statistics by IDC which claimed 2009 was the first year where the number of server applications deployed on virtualised infrastructure exceeded the number of server applications on deployed on physical infrastructure.
“One way to look at it is that year there were more copies of Windows or Linux that didn't touch the hardware than there were that did,” he said.
“This means one of the traditional roles of the operating system, which is to coordinate the underlying hardware, has been taken over by the new layer... a layer that we are collectively laying down.”
With a swathe of disparate devices, the changing role of traditional OS' and, additionally, the influx of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), IT managers can no longer rigidly prescribe standardise end-user computing capabilities, he said.
The result will be a transformation of IT environments within companies beginning at the infrastructure level, which Vmware has dealt in through its vSphere OS.
According to Maritz, the infrastructure layer must become fundamentally more automated, existing applications have to be transformed and moved into the cloud and the delivery of applications to different types of devices needs to be considered.
Maritz is confident partners can apply those three principles to seek out more opportunities from customers and replicate VMware's 2010 financial success this year.
VMware Partner Exchange 2011 concludes on February 11.
Spandas Lui attended VMware Partner Exchnage 2011 in Orlando, Florida, as a guest of VMware