I used to enjoy covering VMware.
In the good old days, CEO Diane Greene would stop by the office to chat about everything, including point upgrades to ESX Server, GSX Server - remember that - or Workstation. She never tried to oversell the products. She embraced a humble, intelligent approach to discussing VMware's products and plans.
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You won't find much reserved about VMware these days. The company's gaudy IPO - documented here in pornographic detail - shattered any notions of holding onto the blushing pride of yesteryear.
So too did last week's VMworld conference in San Francisco. The show used to be a niche event all about a niche vendor. Then, in one year, it transformed into the flagship virtualization gala.
Covering the event turned into an oppressive process due to the volume of marketeers trying to hitch their virtual workloads to VMware and those trying to define their means of besting VMware.
I told Greene, who maintains her incisive, engineering-driven charm despite all the hoopla, that they should change the name of the conference to Virtual World. She joked that VMworld will work just fine - it's Virtual Machine World as much as VMware World, don't ya know.
The painful part about covering VMware these days comes from its newfound place as the undeniable industry standard of which everyone wants a piece. Something like thirty press releases tied to VMware went out last week. Have ESX add-on; will travel.
Ashlee, the folks at VMware aer just too busy. They're public you know, I think, VMware has done well doing what it id when it was "small", you know, talk to engineers, talk to bloggers, now they're on a totally different turf. For me, I just enjoy covering vitualization.