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Citrix Takes Aim at VMworld

VMworld is currently the virtualization industry's vendor and customer magnet and must-attend show. Although vendor-sponsored, VMworld encourages competitors to attend and, on that basis, has become the industry's defacto main event. But in the increasingly competitive world of virtualization, that may be changing.

In a recent blog, Simon Crosby, high-profile Citrix CTO and spokesman, explains how and why the company has thrown down the proverbial gauntlet and decided to go after VMware’s longstanding franchise. Basically, Synergy -- to be held in Las Vegas on May 4 -- will include Virtualization Congress 2009, an independent virtualization conference run by virtualization.info. The event is also aligned with Network World Live!

It’s a strategically smart and interesting move. Crosby describes it as the "industry's first vendor neutral virtualization conference" and writes:

Alessandro's goals for the Virtualization Congress are to make it the industry's premier showcase for virtualization technology, products and business strategy. If you're under the illusion that VMware's VMworld serves that purpose today, you probably also failed to notice that at VMworld even gold sponsors (like Citrix and Microsoft) are only offered one opportunity to present at the conference, and that 99 percent of the sessions are dedicated to VMware's technology and products.

Indeed at VMworld in Las Vegas in 2008 I found that my session was somehow miraculously scheduled to occur in the last hour of the last day in the meeting room furthest from the elevators and escalators, and with barely enough seating. The Microsoft folks complained of similar treatment.

He then goes on to say that Citrix will take a different tack and will, with deliberate intent, have no influence over the Virtualization Congress program. Pull up a lawn chair, folks, this one's going to be interesting to watch.

Posted by Tom Valovic on 01/05/2009 at 12:49 PM


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