TomHowarth
Leadership
Leadership

comments please!!! VMWare has a New CEO

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Diane Green gone,

Tom Howarth

VMware Communities User Moderator

Tom Howarth VCP / VCAP / vExpert
VMware Communities User Moderator
Blog: http://www.planetvm.net
Contributing author on VMware vSphere and Virtual Infrastructure Security: Securing ESX and the Virtual Environment
Contributing author on VCP VMware Certified Professional on VSphere 4 Study Guide: Exam VCP-410
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51 Replies
Daryll
Expert
Expert

Hiya everyone,

Long time no see.

I was pretty surprised at hearing this news today. It sent ripples through the entire virtualization industry. First, a couple of business related thoughts:

1) Microsoft presents a real threat in this space, but doesn't offer the wide variety of other virtualization tools that VMware has in it's toolbox. Also, the MS technology is not likely to be as robust or stable as the VMware core technology, at least not in these early stages.

2) VMware certainly has a business challenge ahead of them. Coopetition with MS is no longer the possibility it once was for VMware. Having a new CEO onboard who understands the business side of Mightcrosoft at a very high level is probably a good thing.

3) The fact that EMC, VMware, and Diane herself didn't have any specific things to say leads me to believe it was not an amicable breakup. I have no inside knowledge of what happened, but it doesn't look like it was one of those "I'm tired and I'm going to walk away" type of things.

On a more personal note:

I didn't know Diane super-well, but I had occasion to speak with her briefly on many occasions. She's personable, approachable, and was a fantastic field general when I was working for VMware. She was all for the creation of our first knowledgebase (which I was the lead project guy for), and was an avid supported of these boards, even when they were small and growing. She recognized individual contributions of people that did well inside the building at VMware, and was quick to take corrective actions when things weren't going the way she thought they should.

She made sure to take care of the employee stockholders when EMC bought VMware. A lot of things could have played out when that happened, but the employess losing their options, having them devalued, or some other bad thing, was not acceptable. I, as well as many others who were there during the very early stages of the company, really appreciated that.

Thanks for your great leadership Diane. Although you may never read this, I'll always consider you one of the good guys.

Peace, everyone. Think happy thawts and keep on truckin.

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kimono
Expert
Expert

VMware / Microsoft merger. Then MS would finally get their live migration......

/kimono/

/kimono/
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Dave_Mishchenko
Immortal
Immortal

... they then ditch ESXi and replace the ESX RHEL service console VM with one running Vista.

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kimono
Expert
Expert

My fear is that EMC is going to assert more controll over VMware, and mess up a good thing.

EMC "Tightening the reins" is a phrase I've heard being thrown around lately...

/kimono/

/kimono/
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virgilwashere
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Some interesting commentary is now starting to emerge. Casts a different light on the situation.

http://virtualgeek.typepad.com/virtual_geek/2008/07/well-thats-inte.html

People get confused because Joe is the chairman both of the EMC and VMware board - but like many people on boards, he needs to operate with a strict chinese wall - and he does that with aplomb (at least from where I sit).One would presume this is an EMC decision as apposed to a VMware one, it could have been better if she was moved sideways into a title more technical i.e. the CTO or CIO.

Following the linked articles from Chad's blog to Chuck and Business Week gives us some quotes from the people involved.

Furthermore, regarding Diane staying on....

One would presume this is an EMC decision as apposed to a VMware one, it could have been better if she was moved sideways into a title more technical i.e. the CTO or CIO.

It seems the VMware Board tried to get Diane to stay on (from the Business Week article)

Tucci says EMC's eight-member board, six of whom are now EMC employees or directors, tried to persuade Greene to stay in a capacity other than CEO, even offering her the chance to design her own job. But she was unwilling to remain onboard with less than her full former powers, Tucci says. "We were unable to get that accomplished, very unfortunately. We wanted that to happen as a board.

Virgil

Message was edited by: virgilwashere to provide clarity of where I was quoting from.

-- Virgil Brisbane VMUG Leader Founding VMUG Board Director
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daniel_uk
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

This has some interesting extract on DG...

kimono
Expert
Expert

Check the scoops at virtualization.info for the latest

http://www.virtualization.info/2008/07/exclusive-vmware-employees-reveals.html

/kimono/

/kimono/
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ejward
Expert
Expert

... they then ditch ESXi and replace the ESX RHEL service console VM with one running Vista.

Ok .... tha's not funny.:)

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olegarr
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I never met Diana myself, but I sorry that she left...

Here is article I like where they trying to find WHY she is no longer with VMware... http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/07/08/tucci_costs_vmware/

Diana thank you for VMware.

olegarr

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Rkelly
Contributor
Contributor

Could be good or bad. Was not so good for the stocks though. Kind of sad that this all happened because the EMC CEO could not get along with Dianne. Also if VMware loses Mendal to all this it is pretty much over for VMWare. What makes VMWare great is they constantly inovate and bring more and more value to data centers.

But we will see. This new CEO has a good track record and he is former Microsoft so he knows how far Microsoft will go to get hyper-v in the datacenters. Also EMC has a legendary sales and marketing channel. VMWare never did a great job on sales but I guess they never had to because VMware was such a great thing. I think now that has changed with all the competition so they need to ramp up the sales push.

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daniel_uk
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

The massive drop in share price may have been either Cisco or Intel who chipped in to the IPO?

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olegarr
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I would expect that Mendel will very leave soon, too... Would you stay if they would fire your wife? I know that when me and my wife worked at the same company she (my wife) did it, so there were two jobless parents without too much money... I was afraid of her desicion, but knew that she could not stay there...

Regarding stock (VMW): It had huge P/E - above 100 and it was very scary.... It's just not normal... As usual they recomend to buy (and hope that it will grow) when P/E above 10...

Check out Cisco (CSCO) it was $80 per share few years ago, now it's about $20... And it's still great product. The most important thing is not to mix great product (such as VMware) and great stock that you expect to grow...

Good luck to all of you.

olegarr

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admin
Immortal
Immortal

I wonder how VMWorld 2008 will be affected by all of this?

Chris

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williambishop
Expert
Expert

Dunno, unfortunately it's already paid for, otherwise I would probably pass on it now.

Ita feri ut se mori sentiat
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admin
Immortal
Immortal

Agreed...I've already paid as well...and I hope to meet some of my students and fellow forum members as well as other VMware instructors.

Chris

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JoshGwyther
Contributor
Contributor

I work for EMC and would like to give opinion to the group. I read a lot of comments around EMC "taking control" of VMware and hoping EMC doesn't "mess it up". Now I'm not a ranking officer at EMC or anything, but I can honestly say that from my perspective the exact oposite seems to be happening. EMC truly recognizes the amazing product that VMware has become. Just in the last 12 months I've seen a dramatic change in culture where it seems every other conversation revolves around VMware and how they are doing things so well. Additionally, everyone I work with understands that the only way for VMware to maintain it's success is to remain open to multiple vendors.

All of us EMC guys and girls are proud of VMware, and we learn a lot from how they operate.

I never met Diane, but have great respect for anyone that can accomplish what she has done. I do feel however that going forward this will turn out to be a very productive move.

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hiptsg-dsiles
Contributor
Contributor

Josh,

I don't necessary disagree with your points and I hope, really hope your right. However if history is any prediction for the future, I see good old Joe Tucci letting the flood gates go and we will see shortly in the future the EMC sales arm will finally be able to sell the VMware product and get the sales comp for it. This will quickly open the existing EMC customer base to those who are still looking at VMware and give EMC's strong salesforce the ambition to help continue the VMware growth, but at a cost of VMware previous stance on being autonomous. The hardware relationships in the VMware ecosystem will just go down the tubes. Kinda like what EMC must have felt when Dell bought EqualLogic changing a strong relationship overnight. When I get the call from my EMC guys that they are now bundling VMware (read very, very affordable pricing bundle) to buy the EMC hardware to run it on, I will shed a tear and through out my EMC gear and go get a beer and drown my sorrows of the good old days when VMware was great.

I hope the vision you laid out is more on point... I just don't have a good feeling....

Dave

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sakacc
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

For what it's worth - chiming in with my colleague Josh (a general solid citizen too Smiley Happy The exec team internally to EMC have been adamant - this has no effect on VMware's arm's length (aka independent org) partnering model (aka neutral - no more, no less) with EMC.

Neither Josh nor I represent EMC as a whole (we're just individual people like you) - I'll also reiterate - it's widely understood within EMC that VMware's independence is (while frustrating to an occasional sales rep) incredibly important for their success.

That's something we have to understand and respect - and then win or lose on our own merits in the VMware context (a discussion I'm happy to have any day of the week). Currently none of VMware's technology partners that are not server OEMs or ODMs (and EMC is neither) can resell VMware, and there's nothing to suggest that's changing. We want to help VMware be as successful as they can be (as shareholders and whose' share prices are linked) - that means they must be independent, and we (EMC) must make sure we are the strongest partner of choice for customers and for VMware (again, on our own merits).

BTW - there was a cut n' paste earlier in the thread from my blog (which totally looks like an innocent mistake) that severely warps what I said on my blog, they added this (which I didn't say): "One would presume this is an EMC decision as apposed to a VMware one, it could have been better if she was moved sideways into a title more technical i.e. the CTO or CIO.". Now, while I DIDN'T say that (someone else did - daniel_uk) - it's a good question.... BUT who is to say that they didn't propose that, but they couldn't come to an agreement? It's an obvious compromise that would lower the risk. And as the followon quote added, THEY DID - Diane not choosing that - I can't blame her (I would probably do the same) - but you could see the impasse that leaaves the board with.

It's all to easy to tar someone with the "Evil Machine Company" brush (whether it's Joe or EMC itself) - it's really not that way. We're working our best to make a good business, and help our customers - it's that simple.

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AWahlert
Contributor
Contributor

Hi VMWare Team,

i'm shocked too. Now my biggest fear is, that VMWare is completely occupied by EMC or in the biggest worst case by Microsoft.

VMWare is one of the greatest products ever. I know vmware since the first Workstation versions in the lately 90's.

So please protect VMWare against the influence of these Big Companys.

hopefully looking forward to a golden feature (without EMC or Microsoft)

kind regards from vienna / Austria

Andreas

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dkvello
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I can not believe the incredible incompetence shown by the EMC CEO in handling this matter. It is obvious that he should take his hat and leave.

Bringing in a new VMware CEO that has nothing but failed products on his record is even more mind-boggling.

This is not going to please customers nor investors once they realize the true implications of this act of idiocy.

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