Cisco, EMC, VMware Form Virtualization Coalition

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Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) and EMC, together with VMware, have introduced the Virtual Computing Environment coalition, an unprecedented collaboration created to accelerate customers' ability to increase business agility through greater IT infrastructure flexibility, and lower IT, energy and real estate costs through pervasive data center virtualization and a transition to private cloud infrastructures.

Cisco, EMC and VMware have worked closely over the past year on a shared vision for the future of enterprise IT infrastructure – private cloud computing. A private cloud is a virtual IT infrastructure that is securely controlled and operated solely for one organization. It can be managed either by that organization or by a third party, and it can exist on or off premises or in combination. Private cloud computing offers the controls and security of today's data center with the agility required for business innovation at substantially lower costs.

The Virtual Computing Environment coalition offers organizations of all sizes an accelerated approach to data center transformation with dramatic efficiencies that promise significant reductions in both capital and operating expenses. As a result, organizations will no longer have to choose between best-of-breed technologies and end-to-end vendor accountability, the companies said.

With the introduction of Vblock Infrastructure Packages, the Virtual Computing Environment coalition will provide customers with a fundamentally better approach to streamlining and optimizing IT strategies around private clouds. Vblock Infrastructure Packages are fully integrated, tested, validated and ready-to-go/ready-to-grow infrastructure packages that combine best-in-class virtualization, networking, computing, storage, security and management technologies from Cisco, EMC and VMware with end-to-end vendor accountability.

The coalition will scale customer adoption of Vblock systems by enabling a global community of systems integrators, service providers, channel partners, and independent software vendors . The coalition has also established unified presales, professional services and support capabilities to simplify customer engagement.

In unveiling the Virtual Computing Environment coalition, Cisco and EMC also introduced Acadia, a joint venture focused on accelerating customer buildouts of private cloud infrastructures through an end-to-end enablement of service providers and large enterprise customers. Acadia's unique "build, operate, transfer" model for delivering the Vblock architecture, addressing people, process and technology, will offer customers further choice, flexibility and cost advantages as they seek to virtualize their IT infrastructures and evolve to private cloud environments. In addition to Cisco and EMC as the lead investors, the buildout of Acadia's expanded capabilities in 2010 has also been capitalized by investments from VMware and Intel. Because the Vblock architecture relies heavily on Intel Xeon processors and other Intel data center technology, Intel will join the Acadia effort as a minority investor to facilitate and accelerate customer adoption of the latest Intel technology for servers, storage and networking.

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