VMware co-founder Mendel Rosenblum has poured tepid water on the recent acquisition of open source virtualisation vendor XenSource by remote desktop company Citrix, as well as outlining his demands to the chip vendors. He made his remarks during an exclusive interview with sister publication Techworld at virtualisation industry event VMworld, during which he also outlined what additional support for virtualisation he wants the chip vendors to provide.
Commenting from a technology perspective on the Citrix buy-out announced last month, Rosenblum said: "If I were in Citrix's shoes would I have gone in that direction? There is a layer to control – I can see it from that point of view as they've long suffered from being on top of Microsoft....I can see why they might do it but there are a lot of challenges."
Rosenblum also laid out a blueprint for some of the issues he'd like to see the AMD and Intel tackle. He said that VMware didn't always get what it wanted from the processor makers, he said that VMware needed more visibility into how virtual machines use the processor cache in order to provide better quality of service. in particular, he referred to the problem of a VM demanding huge amounts of processor resource that affected other processor cores.
He said: "We've made great steps but if you have a 10 gig NIC with tiny packets coming it can consume a whole CPU just looking at each of them, so it's really difficult trying to match line rate."
Rosenblum also claimed that his comments about virtualisation being a threat to Windows were taken out of context.
"Journalists like to put things in headlines that I actually didn't say....The point was that once you have the virtualisation layer driving the hardware, that's taken away some of the functionality of the OS, which gives the OS a chance to focus on its other major goal which still very much needed in the application environment. So where modern OSes have gone is to control hardware and the application and are running into a dead end."