EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.10.08

Maritz and Tucci’s Microsoft Slog Against VMware

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Novell, Virtualisation, Windows, Xen at 8:40 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft dirty tactics

Microsoft’s infamous “tilt into the death spiral” humour is not so funny. Rather than build superior products it is trying to destroy rivals and eliminate choice in the market, not only to reduce real choice. Today’s new discussion is based on VMware, which was covered extensively in the past two days’ news.

“Therein you have many of the characteristic of what Microsoft refers to as “The Slog”, which is beyond just “guerrilla marketing”.”We have already documented some examples of Microsoft tactics for countering competition. Familiar patterns include dumping, shared monopoly alliances, financial games, targeted brain drains, and aggressive/hostile acquisitions. That last pattern happens to be a warning about Microsoft’s attempts to scoop up or attack the competitors one by one.

A previous post showed some new example of cases where Microsoft executives influence Microsoft's potential rivals, which no longer are. They are likely to become more obedient due to the inter-personal issues at play (bearing in mind that companies are just people and — accordingly — their behaviour is a personal thing too).

Some of the latest maneuvers against VMware are being played while insulting the competition using paid allies, e.g. Yankee Group [1, 2], and having partners make a lot of noise over yet-inexistent Microsoft technology. Therein you have many of the characteristic of what Microsoft refers to as "The Slog", which is beyond just “guerrilla marketing”.

Looking at VMware for some details, Vance reveals the ugly story behind it.

In the summer of 2007, Diane Greene was lauded as a business hero for leading VMware, a maker of business software, to the hottest stock debut since Google. But in the ensuing year, despite her popularity with employees and on Wall Street, her relationship with her directors, and especially VMware’s chairman, Joseph M. Tucci, grew increasingly chilly.

On July 7, she found out just how cold it had become. After Ms. Greene made a special presentation to VMware’s board, Mr. Tucci, who heads VMware’s parent company, EMC, pulled her aside, according to people familiar with the events, who asked for anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss internal company decisions.

Inviting Mendel Rosenblum, Ms. Greene’s husband and the co-founder of VMware, into the room, Mr. Tucci told Ms. Greene she was fired, effective immediately. And he said the board wanted Mr. Rosenblum, VMware’s chief scientist, to take her seat on the board. Mr. Rosenblum declined the offer.

[...]

And VMware’s new chief executive, Paul Maritz, once a top executive at Microsoft, is fighting to articulate how VMware can evolve from a darling upstart to a mature player capable of maintaining its growth while facing off against some of the world’s technology heavyweights.

What a surprise! Not.

Microsoft’s partner of the year is appointing Microsoft leadership instead. It’s all about EMC and it’s some kind of war over the future direction at VMware. Microsoft is trying to ‘pull a Netscape’ against it with zero-cost and bundling of technology. VMware indicated over a year ago that antitrust action would be considered, but what is VMware now? Under the regime of a Microsoft executive (Paul Maritz) and top Microsoft partner (Joseph Tucci), it seems to have become just a corpse of its former self and a ‘yes man’ to Microsoft. In essence, VMware has been ‘hijacked’ not by investors but by companies it enabled to gain power over it, notably EMC.

The ‘older-generation’ employees of VMware dislike the new management, which mistreats and sacks the founders. Here is some more new evidence of the backlash.

We’ve been told virtualization is the fastest evolving sector of the computing industry. But now, VMware is running on autopilot without its key scientists, and Microsoft hopes another delay won’t hurt it too much.

[...]

Rosenblum’s colleague, executive vice president for R&D D. Richard Sarwal, resigned from VMware just last week to return to his former employer, Oracle. And The New York Times learned that Paul Chan, VMware’s VP for product development, already left the company last month without the company making a sound.

Dow Jones wrote about this too. Over at The Inquirer, this partnerships parade of Microsoft gets another mention with the addition of AMD, a Novell ally.

AMD HAS TEAMED up with Microsoft in a bid to jointly take a bigger slice of the server virtualisation market.

The two companies are offering a joint model which combines the Opteron’s AMD-V and Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V to streamline virtualisation on a hardware and software level.

It must not be forgotten just how close Novell is to Microsoft in that regard, working alongside its partners of the year at Citrix, which grabbed Xen away from Red Hat, Ubuntu and other GNU/Linux vendors. Here are some more new details.

“Microsoft has been working closely with the likes of Novell and Citrix to ensure support for non-Microsoft technology.”

It’s important to remember that Novell relies on Microsoft’s mercy and hopes that Microsoft will let SUSE gain advantage over Red Hat through virtualisation. In fact, Ron Hovsepian’s coming talk will be focused primarily on some of these issues.

Novell today announced Ron Hovsepian, president and CEO, will deliver a keynote at Interop New York on Wednesday, Sept. 17 at 10 a.m, at Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City. The Interop New York conference is focused on providing comprehensive thought-leadership on key IT topics and the future of business technology. In line with those themes, the keynote, “Making IT Work As One,” will outline Novell’s solutions strategy, with a focus on delivering customer value by reducing cost, complexity and risk in today’s mixed IT environments.

In order to erode VMware’s strong position even faster, Microsoft will be doing what it does best: dumping.

Microsoft offers free Hyper-V stand-alone version

[...]

Hyper-V is Microsoft’s entry into the crowded field of virtualization vendors where the hypervisor is looking more and more like a commodity. VMware is the dominant player, but Citrix, Oracle, Red Hat, Sun and Novell are among those offering virtualization technology.

There is a lot of hyping up around Hyper-V at the moment. The Linux-hostile Sys-Con [1, 2] has just aired the article “The End of VMware!” Announcing a death prematurely to make it so? The editor stripped off the exclamation mark later, but the headline is still damaging. This smells like classic “Slog” tactics. Microsoft ‘talking point’ Ivy Lessner wrote another article indicating VMware despair.

This is not competition. This is a slog.

“Ideally, use of the competing technology becomes associated with mental deficiency, as in, “he believes in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and OS/2.” Just keep rubbing it in, via the press, analysts, newsgroups, whatever. Make the complete failure of the competition’s technology part of the mythology of the computer industry. We want to place selection pressure on those companies and individuals that show a genetic weakness for competitors’ technologies, to make the industry increasingly resistant to such unhealthy strains, over time.”

Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

3 Comments

  1. DOUGman said,

    September 10, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    Gravatar

    Interesting part about Vmware, I had not known any of that or failed to read about it earlier.. I wonder how Vmware will be regarding Linux in general in a few years.

    D.

  2. Jose_X said,

    September 10, 2008 at 9:46 pm

    Gravatar

    I was wondering how Maritz got in.

    Maybe things went down like this:

    Some big players (not necessarily just at Microsoft but maybe) decided closed-source VMWare did not stand a long-term chance without levers and anchors like Microsoft has. After convincing key EMC people also worried to death about FOSS (eg, Tucci), it was likely decided they would get (the equiv of) money to buy VMWare. The technology would be allowed to migrate over to Microsoft. They took it public in order to squeeze out remaining value in VMWare by dumping inflated shares on the public. Also, the VMWare brand will now likely be destroyed, and some people will get payed well. Most of the honest and hard-working, however, will likely be looking for jobs soon.

    Don’t mean to sound the end of VMWare, but this has probably been decided by actions already taken. That’s what it sounds like to me from what I have been reading on BN and elsewhere.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    September 11, 2008 at 1:00 am

    Gravatar

    Virtualisation turns from a product into a feature. But the solution here seems to favour the wrong company.

What Else is New


  1. Links 21/10/2014: Debian Fork Debate, New GNU IceCat

    Links for the day



  2. Criminal Microsoft is Censoring the Web and Breaks Laws to Do So; the Web Should Censor (Remove) Microsoft

    Microsoft is still breaking the Internet using completely bogus takedown requests (an abuse of DMCA) and why Microsoft Windows, which contains weaponised back doors (shared with the NSA), should be banned from the Internet, not just from the Web



  3. Microsoft 'Loving' GNU/Linux and Other Corporate Media Fiction

    Microsoft has bullied or cleverly bribed enough technology-centric media sites to have them characterise Microsoft as a friend of Free/Open Source software (FOSS) that also "loves Linux"



  4. India May be Taking Bill Gates to Court for Misusing His So-called 'Charity' to Conduct Clinical Trials Without Consent on Behalf of Companies He Invests in

    Bill Gates may finally be pulled into the courtroom again, having been identified for large-scale abuses that he commits in the name of profit (not "charity")



  5. The Problems With Legal Workarounds, Patent Scope, and Expansion of Patent Trolls to the East

    Patent trolls are in the news again and it's rather important, albeit for various different reasons, more relevant than the ones covered here in the past



  6. Links 20/10/2014: Cloudera and Red Hat, Debian 7.7, and Vivid Vervet

    Links for the day



  7. Links 20/10/2014: 10 Years Since First Ubuntu Release

    Links for the day



  8. How Patent Lawyers Analyze Alice v. CLS Bank

    Breaking down a patent lawyer's analysis of a Supreme Court's decision that seemingly invalidated hundreds of thousands of software patents



  9. Is It Google's Turn to Head the USPTO Corporation?

    The industry-led USPTO continues to be coordinated by some of its biggest clients, despite issues associated with conflicting interests



  10. The EPO's Public Relations Disaster Amid Distrust From Within (and EPO Communications Chief Leaves): Part VII

    Amid unrest and suspicion of misconduct in the EPO's management (ongoing for months if not years), Transparency International steps in, but the EPO's management completely ignores Transparency International, refusing to collaborate; the PR chief of the EPO is apparently being pushed out in the mean time



  11. Links 18/10/2014: Debian Plans for Init Systems, Tails 1.2

    Links for the day



  12. Links 18/10/2014: New ELive, Android Expansion

    Links for the day



  13. Another Fresh Blow to Software Patents (and With Them Patent Trolls)

    Another new development shows that more burden of proof is to be put on the litigant, thus discouraging the most infamous serial patent aggressors and reducing the incentive to settle with a payment out of court



  14. Links 16/10/2014: New Android, SSL 3.0 Flaw

    Links for the day



  15. How the Corporate Press Deceives and Sells Microsoft Agenda

    Various new examples of media propaganda that distorts or makes up the facts (bias/lies by omission/selection) and where this is all coming from



  16. Vista 10 is Still Vapourware, But We Already Know It Will Increase Surveillance on Its Users and Contain Malicious Back Doors

    The villainous company which makes insecure-by-design operating systems will continue to do so, but in the mean time the corporate press covers only bugs in FOSS, not back doors in proprietary software



  17. Links 15/10/2014: KDE Plasma 5.1 is Out, GOG Reaches 100-Title Mark

    Links for the day



  18. With .NET Foundation Affiliation Xamarin is Another Step Closer to Being Absorbed by Microsoft

    Xamarin is not even trying to pretend that separation exists between Microsoft and its work; yet another collaboration is announced



  19. The EPO's Protection Triangle of Battistelli, Kongstad, and Topić: Part VI

    Jesper Kongstad, Benoît Battistelli, and Zeljko Topić are uncomfortably close personally and professionally, so suspicions arise that nepotism and protectionism play a negative role that negatively affects the European public



  20. Corporate Media Confirms the Demise of Software Patents in the United States; Will India and Europe Follow?

    It has become increasingly official that software patents are being weakened in the United States' USPTO as well as the courts; will software leaders such as India and Europe stop trying to imitate the old USPTO?



  21. Links 14/10/2014: CAINE 6, New RHEL, Dronecode

    Links for the day



  22. Microsoft's Disdain for Women Steals the Show at a Women's Event

    Steve Ballmer's successor, Satya Nadella, is still too tactless to lie to the audience, having been given --through subversive means -- a platform at a conference that should have shunned Microsoft, a famously misogynistic company



  23. SCOTUS May Soon Put an End to the 'Copyrights on APIs' Question While Proprietary Giants Continue to Harass Android/Linux in Every Way Conceivable

    Google takes its fight over API freedom to the Supreme Court in the Unites States and it also takes that longstanding patent harassment from the Microsoft- and Apple-backed troll (Rockstar) out of East Texas



  24. Patent Lawsuits Almost Halved After SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Software Patents

    The barrier for acceptance of software patent applications is raised in the United States and patent lawsuits, many of which involve software these days, are down very sharply, based on new figures from Lex Machina



  25. Links 13/10/2014: ChromeOS and EXT, Debian Resists Systemd Domination

    Links for the day



  26. Links 12/10/2014: Blackphone Tablet, Sony's Firefox OS Port

    Links for the day



  27. Links 9/10/2014: Free Software in Germany, Lenovo Tablets With Android

    Links for the day



  28. Links 8/10/2014: A Lot of Linux+AMD News, New ROSA Desktop Is Out

    Links for the day



  29. Lawyers' Propaganda About Software Patents and a New AstroTurf Entity Called Innovation Alliance

    Patent propaganda and deception from patent lawyers (among other parasites such as patent trolls) continues to flood the Web, intersecting with reports that prove them totally wrong



  30. How Microsoft Handles Disasters: Grace Hopper Conference Has Been Infiltrated by "Microsoft Disaster Response"

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) must be a disaster to Microsoft's bottom line because Microsoft is sending "Microsoft Disaster Response" to infiltrate and disrupt a conference about women in FOSS


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts