Having dominated the server virtualisation market for over a decade, VMware has not rested on its laurels, leaping into the networking space in 2013 with NSX before making its debut in the cybersecurity market last summer with the launch of AppDefense.
The Dell-owned vendor's metamorphosis has not escaped the attention of Sam Routledge, CTO of Softcat, which first forged a partnership with VMware 12 years ago.
"I'm mega impressed with the way they've evolved," Routledge (pictured) said.
"Their positioning as a security platform company is interesting and with the bluster around security that's a really good thing. They've got NSX as a network layer that will help with security at a much more granular level. That's something we advocate: moving away from simply a perimeter-based security model to embedding security within your network.
"The other thing is AppDefense, which whitelists services running in virtual machines and will then take actions defined by you if it spots anything running that shouldn't be. I think that positioning in the current market is spot on."
VMware's détente with AWS (in 2013 former president Carl Eschenbach urged its partners to help it see off the public cloud threat posed by "someone who sells books") is another plus point, Routledge said.
"Fast-forward five years and they are in partnership. From a customer and hybrid cloud reality standpoint, that's really interesting," he said. "The [VMware-AWS] partnership won't hit the UK until later this year, but it's made them really relevant."
Nima Green asks what is driving public cloud uptake in Germany
In the wake of yet another lawsuit involving Oracle, we run through 10 of the vendor's biggest court battles
CEO Chuck Robbins says Cisco will use the Catalyst 9000 product range as a template for future launches
Today saw 14 of the UK IT channel's biggest hitters come together to determine the winners of CRN's WiC awards. But what does being a WiC judge actually involve? Doug Woodburn reports