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VMware's chief Maritz determined to transform VMware to a Cloud Computing god

This is an interesting article.

Maritz is on the move. "In technology, if you stand still, eventually your value proposition evaporates," he says, holding forth in a sunlit conference room at the company's Palo Alto (Calif.) headquarters. On Nov. 10, VMware announced it had bought the French company Trango Virtual Processors, moving it into the market for software that powers mobile phones. In late October the company launched its first advertising campaign, featuring customer testimonials. Even competitors say Maritz is already making his mark. "He's a great hire for VMware," says Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com. "He understands where VMware should go."

Next stop: an ambitious project called the "Virtual Data Center Operating System," a complex piece of software that promises to help companies make their IT operations even more efficient by acting as a traffic cop among their hundreds of servers, disk drives, networking devices, and applications. VMware has hundreds of engineers working on the system, scheduled to make its debut next year. It's designed to position VMware as a technology "platform" for cloud computing, around which other companies could add capabilities and build their own businesses. "VMware is one of the few companies in the industry that can aspire to have a platform," Maritz says. "There will be three or four credible players in that marketplace, and we plan to be one of them."

When Maritz was the highest-ranking Microsoft executive behind Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, he was known for an intellectual, deliberate style that helped fend off competition while mediating between warring factions at Microsoft. "Paul is not one of those Ballmer types who says, 'We're going to destroy and gut them,'" says Tod Nielsen, CEO of Borland Software (BORL), who spent 12 years at Microsoft in the '80s and '90s. "He likes to be behind the scenes."



BusinessWeek

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