Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Xenia von Wedel, Sanjay Zalavadia, Dana Gardner, Kevin Benedict

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog

Containers Expo Blog: Article

Managing the Virtual Infrastructure Is Crucial: VKernel CEO

SYS-CON's Virtualization Journal conducts an Exclusive Q&A with Alex Bakman, Founder & CEO of VKernel

"Properly managing the virtual infrastructure will have a huge impact on pushing more virtualization projects forward," declares Alex Bakman, Founder & CEO of VKernel, in this Exclusive Q&A with SYS-CON's Virtualization Journal.

"Organizations need visibility into how resources are being utilized not only for current planning, but also for what is next," Bakman adds. Here is the interview in full...

Virtualization Journal: Starting at 35,000 ft...where is VKernel positioned in the virtualization universe?

Alex Bakman: VKernel is positioned as a hypervisor agnostic provider of innovative virtualization management products. VKernel is the only company that can help customers predict future capacity and performance problems and how to avoid them.

Virtualization Journal: And why is performance and systems management such an important issue for Enterprise IT professionals? What are the typical pain points?

AB: Organizations are deploying mission-critical applications in virtualized data centers. Performance problems and outages can impact the business and result in lost business, loss of customers, etc. This is why it is essential that mission critical applications are monitored and problems are prevented.

Virtualization Journal: Can you give a quick concrete example of the specific business benefit of knowing in this kind of detail how your virtualized network is being used?

AB: Specific business benefit would include:

  • better utilization of existing hardware and delaying additional hardware purchases of SANs and hosts, which are expensive
  • assuring great performance and user satisfaction by identifying and removing performance bottlenecks, and with predictive monitoring preventing future problems
  • proving viability of virtualization as a platform for enterprise mission critical applications

Virtualization Journal: Are you suggesting that, without access to this kind of insight, that companies might risk wasting their investment in virtualization, and missing out on the cost savings?

AB: Exactly. Without this kind of visibility organizations will:

  • Spend more on virtualization hardware than necessary, a very expensive proposition
  • Run the danger of the virtualization platform being labeled as "not ready for primetime" if performance problems develop

Virtualization Journal: Backing up just a bit, what's the conceptual difference between a virtual appliance and a virtual machine?

AB: Virtual Appliance is a virtual machine. The difference is the design philosophy. A well designed Virtual Appliance is small, has minimum OS, and is designed to solve a particular problem. It is truly optimized for virtual environments.

Virtualization Journal: And can a VKernel virtual appliance run under VMware, Citrix, VirtualBox, whatever? Or is it only VMware compatible?

AB: At this time, we support VMware.  We are currently developing solutions that support Microsoft Hyper-V.

Virtualization Journal: How, as succinctly as possible, would you sum up what VKernel is trying to help its customers accomplish?

AB: VKernel is committed to helping our customers:

  • Save money by utilizing existing hardware and resources better
  • Increase VM density - safely adding more VMs per host
  • Delay hardware purchases - getting more out of organizations' existing virtualization investments
  • Predict and avoid performance problems - know about potential issues ahead of time

Virtualization Journal: So in these recession-sensitive times, business benefits are both real and tangible, from virtualization - when properly managed?

AB: Absolutely...  Management tools (the right ones) enable you to do more with less.

What we saw in 2008 was a proliferation of management solutions introduced throughout the year from both vendors large and small. Both VMware and Microsoft also started talking about the importance of managing the virtual infrastructure in the second half of the year. Why, because properly managing the virtual infrastructure will have a huge impact on pushing more virtualization projects forward. Organizations need visibility into how resources are being utilized not only for current planning, but also for what is next.

Virtualization Journal: VMware just reported a 25% earnings increase for its Q4. What message do you think that sends to Enterprise IT managers and indeed to their CEOs?

AB: It is no longer just for test and development anymore. Mass adoption for production environments is now underway. And, even in these economic times, organizations are looking at virtualization to cut costs.

Virtualization Journal: How about Microsoft? What impact do you see their virtualization offerings eventually having in the market?

AB: They are already popular in the SMB Market. Over time Microsoft will get bigger clients as Hyper-V matures and meets their needs. Microsoft will become a threat to VMware long term. In the short term, they will own the SMB market.

Virtualization Journal: Aside from testing, where else does VKernel see most potential growth for virtualization technologies?

AB: Clearly, the biggest immediate growth potential is for running production server applications. The next frontier is desktop virtualization and cloud computing, which has the potential to really change traditional computing. And, of course, create significantly more opportunities for management solutions.

Virtualization Journal: As you know, SYS-CON as an organization is laser-focused not only on virtualization but also on cloud computing: how does VKernel define itself in relation to the new world of the cloud?

AB: Virtualization is the enabler technology for cloud computing. Cloud computing has the same set of systems management challenges: Capacity and Performance Management, Chargeback, Inventory, etc...VKernel tools are directly applicable to manage and optimize cloud computing applications.

Virtualization Journal: You are venture-funded. Tell us a little about your backers.

AB: We are backed by Polaris Venture Partners (Boston) and Hummer Winblad Venture Partners (San Francisco). Both are top notch firms that have backed many successful companies in this space.

Virtualization Journal: One of your directors, from one of those same backers, is Mitchell Kertzman. He was nominated by SYS-CON as being the most prescient man in the industry - does that surprise you?

AB: Not at all surprised. Mitchell has a keen sense of what organizations will need in the brave new world. He's a great advisor to VKernel and provides solid guidance for what we need to do and how to do it. I'd like to offer my congratulations to Mitchell for this honor.

ABOUT ALEX BAKMAN: Alex Bakman will be speaking at the 5th International Virtualization & Expo in New York (March 30-April 1, 2009). He is the founder and CEO of VKernel, a provider of easy-to-use and quick-to-deploy virtual appliances for managing virtual server environments. A recognized expert in systems management, server virtualization, IT security, and configuration management, Bakman was prior to VKernel the founder and CEO of Ecora Software and remains the company’s chairman of the board. He is a frequent speaker at many industry events and conference, and a published author in various technology and business publications. His experience as director of IT for a Fortune 500 insurance company adds “real world” perspective to his understanding of the challenges facing today's IT executives.

More Stories By Jeremy Geelan

Jeremy Geelan is Chairman & CEO of the 21st Century Internet Group, Inc. and an Executive Academy Member of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Formerly he was President & COO at Cloud Expo, Inc. and Conference Chair of the worldwide Cloud Expo series. He appears regularly at conferences and trade shows, speaking to technology audiences across six continents. You can follow him on twitter: @jg21.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Connected devices and the industrial internet are growing exponentially every year with Cisco expecting 50 billion devices to be in operation by 2020. In this period of growth, location-based insights are becoming invaluable to many businesses as they adopt new connected technologies. Knowing when and where these devices connect from is critical for a number of scenarios in supply chain management, disaster management, emergency response, M2M, location marketing and more. In his session at @Th...
It is one thing to build single industrial IoT applications, but what will it take to build the Smart Cities and truly society changing applications of the future? The technology won’t be the problem, it will be the number of parties that need to work together and be aligned in their motivation to succeed. In his Day 2 Keynote at @ThingsExpo, Henrik Kenani Dahlgren, Portfolio Marketing Manager at Ericsson, discussed how to plan to cooperate, partner, and form lasting all-star teams to change t...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Big Data at Cloud Expo - to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - has announced its Call for Papers is open. Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is...
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ReadyTalk, a leading provider of online conferencing and webinar services, has been named Vendor Presentation Sponsor at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ReadyTalk delivers audio and web conferencing services that inspire collaboration and enable the Future of Work for today’s increasingly digital and mobile workforce. By combining intuitive, innovative tec...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
industrial company for a multi-year contract initially valued at over $4.0 million. In addition to DataV software, Bsquare will also provide comprehensive systems integration, support and maintenance services. DataV leverages advanced data analytics, predictive reasoning, data-driven diagnostics, and automated orchestration of remediation actions in order to improve asset uptime while reducing service and warranty costs.
Vidyo, Inc., has joined the Alliance for Open Media. The Alliance for Open Media is a non-profit organization working to define and develop media technologies that address the need for an open standard for video compression and delivery over the web. As a member of the Alliance, Vidyo will collaborate with industry leaders in pursuit of an open and royalty-free AOMedia Video codec, AV1. Vidyo’s contributions to the organization will bring to bear its long history of expertise in codec technolo...