VIRTUAL SERVER INFRASTRUCTURE

Open Source Project vcluster Now Runs Upstream Kubernetes Natively

Loft Labs | January 10, 2022

Loft Labs, a venture-backed startup working on developer tooling and platform technology for Kubernetes, announced that the popular open source vcluster project now supports upstream Kubernetes.

Although engineers have already been able to deploy virtual clusters using vcluster on top of vanilla Kubernetes clusters, the virtual clusters themselves have always been using the opinionated K3s distribution internally rather than upstream Kubernetes. With this release, vcluster users will now be able to deploy Kubernetes-powered virtual clusters to improve and optimize utilization of computing resources without the need to use K3s within the virtualization layer.

We expanded vcluster support to vanilla Kubernetes in response to feedback from our user community. Many companies working with vcluster want to start leveraging the benefits of virtual clusters in production. Making these virtual clusters run with Kubernetes rather than K3s is a big step towards production-readiness for vcluster.”

Lukas Gentele, co-founder and CEO, Loft Labs

With the availability of upstream Kubernetes in vcluster, users can now also use any new Kubernetes feature immediately after its release and will not have to wait for K3s to ship their adapted Kubernetes version.

First launched in April 2021, vcluster is used to create lightweight Kubernetes clusters that run inside the namespaces of underlying Kubernetes clusters. Using virtual clusters solves the majority of multi-tenancy issues of Kubernetes because they offer:

  • Better isolation than simple namespace-based multi-tenancy;
  • Reduced cloud computing cost because virtual clusters are much more lightweight and resource-efficient than spinning up separate single-tenant clusters;
  • Logical separation and encapsulation of application workloads from the underlying cluster’s shared infrastructure workloads (such as shared ingress controller or network plug-ins).

At the same time, virtual cluster users can expect that their virtual cluster behaves just like any regular Kubernetes cluster because vcluster is a certified Kubernetes distribution, which means that it passes all conformance tests that CNCF requires. Virtual clusters are often used as development environments when engineers are building, testing and debugging cloud-native software, but they are also frequently used as ephemeral environments for executing continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipelines. Also, an increasing number of companies are starting to explore virtual clusters in production, where virtualizing Kubernetes can be a great way to: surpass the scalability limits of regular Kubernetes clusters; isolate heterogeneous workloads in shared clusters; and streamline and simplify cluster operations when working with large-scale multi-tenant clusters.

Loft Labs builds on top of vcluster and provides an enterprise-grade Kubernetes platform called Loft which is used by large organizations to create a self-service platform for their engineering teams. When an enterprise runs Loft, their engineers can provision virtual clusters on-demand whenever they need them, either using the Loft UI (user interface), the Loft CLI (command-line interface) or even using the Kubernetes command-line tool kubectl via the custom resources provided as part of Loft.

About Loft Labs
Loft Labs was founded in 2019 to create open-source developer tooling and virtual cluster technology for Kubernetes, with the goal to increase developer productivity and to help engineers gain secure but unimpeded access to cloud infrastructure.

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SERVER VIRTUALIZATION

Virtuozzo Named Cloud Enabler of the Year at the Storage Awards XIX

Virtuozzo | June 14, 2022

Virtuozzo, the alternative cloud platform leader, today announced it was named Cloud Enabler of the Year during the 19th annual Storage Awards hosted by Storage Magazine. Filling a void in the cloud enablement market, Virtuozzo delivers a robust cloud platform for service providers that is easy to use and manage. The honor recognizes the company’s commitment to enabling these providers to rapidly launch an extensive portfolio of scalable cloud services that are viable, cost-effective alternatives to hyperscaler solutions. The Storage Awards, also known as the Storries, recognize the finest products, companies, and people revolutionizing storage technology. Winners are chosen by Storage Magazine readers, making it one of the few programs driven by an independent selection committee comprised of users and IT decision makers. Virtuozzo was one of twelve nominees in the Cloud Enabler of the Year category and was a contender in five other categories—including Cloud Company of the Year for which it was named runner-up. “Winning the Storage Award is an achievement we deeply appreciate, We understand that the decision was made by IT industry members who work with and understand what cloud solutions need to be, what they should enable to be truly beneficial to end users. We are committed to helping service providers generate revenue through competitive, easy-to-use solutions that offer growth and opportunity. As its adoption continues, we believe that Virtuozzo delivers on that promise.” Alex Fine, CEO, Virtuozzo Fast, Easy, Lower-Cost Cloud Virtuozzo delivers everything ranging from Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) to platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) in a single cloud platform. It is purpose-built for hosting, cloud and managed service providers (HSPs, CSPs, and MSPs) complete with features and functions designed to help them easily implement and manage extensive, scalable cloud product portfolios. The simplicity of Virtuozzo frees service providers to focus on differentiating products as well as hands-on customer support—enabling them to quickly reach profitability while helping their users maximize their cloud investments. Further, Virtuozzo offers its partners a full suite of professional services that help them go to market quickly and efficiently. These include Product Installation, Managed Cloud, Training, and Consulting among others—establishing a true, mutually beneficial collaboration. About Virtuozzo Virtuozzo provides the leading alternative cloud platform for service providers, enabling them to sell cloud services that are more accessible, more affordable and easier to use than hyperscaler solutions. The company’s legacy includes developing the first commercially available container technology and being a major contributor to numerous virtualization and open-source projects for more than 20 years. Today, Virtuozzo cloud solutions are used by more than 700 Cloud Service Providers, Managed Service Providers and Hosting Providers in 80 countries. Virtuozzo is based in Schaffhausen, Switzerland, and has more than 320 employees across the U.S., UK, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

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VMWARE

VMware Named a Leader in Three Unified Endpoint Management IDC MarketScape Vendor Assessments

VMware | June 17, 2022

VMware Inc. a leading innovator in enterprise software, today announced it has been positioned as a Leader in three recent IDC MarketScape reports related to the Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) space: IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software 2022 Vendor Assessment IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software for Apple Devices 2022 Vendor Assessment IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software for Ruggedized/Internet of Things Device Deployments 2022 Vendor Assessment The evaluated solution, VMware Workspace ONE, enables customers to automate management and security for all endpoints (including mobile, desktops, AR/VR, and mission-critical frontline devices) running any OS (including iOS/iPadOS, Android, Windows 10/11, macOS, Linux, and Chrome OS) and any app, across diverse use cases, all from an integrated digital workspace platform. The UEM vendor assessment report states, “Workspace ONE addresses a broad range of device types and use cases across vertical industries, from traditional mobility management to modern Windows PC and Mac management and IoT device management. The UEM component of Workspace ONE is also part of a broader product portfolio from VMware's end-user computing group, including VMware Horizon desktop virtualization, endpoint and application analytics, and endpoint security based on technology acquired in the purchase of Carbon Black. VMware made a number of improvements and advancements in Workspace ONE in 2021, including augmented management capabilities for Apple's macOS devices, as well as Windows management.” “As organizations evolve to support a hybrid workplace, they must establish an engaging and more secure experience across all devices. VMware Workspace ONE supports this mission by enabling customers to automate management of every device for any use case. This latest recognition from the IDC MarketScape reflects our continued drive to provide a single solution for our customers that can help IT secure a fully distributed workforce.” Shankar Iyer, senior vice president and general manager, End-User Computing, VMware To access an excerpt from the “IDC Marketscape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software 2022 Vendor Assessment” (doc #US48325122, May 2022), click here. An excerpt of the “IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software for Apple Devices 2022 Vendor Assessment” (doc #US48325222, May 2022) report is available here. An excerpt of the “IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Endpoint Management Software for Ruggedized/Internet of Things Device Deployments 2022 Vendor Assessment” (doc #US48325322, May 2022) report is available here. About IDC MarketScape: IDC MarketScape vendor assessment model is designed to provide an overview of the competitive fitness of ICT (information and communications technology) suppliers in a given market. The research methodology utilizes a rigorous scoring methodology based on both qualitative and quantitative criteria that results in a single graphical illustration of each vendor’s position within a given market. IDC MarketScape provides a clear framework in which the product and service offerings, capabilities and strategies, and current and future market success factors of IT and telecommunications vendors can be meaningfully compared. The framework also provides technology buyers with a 360-degree assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of current and prospective vendors. About VMware VMware software powers the world’s complex digital infrastructure. The company’s cloud, networking and security, and digital workspace offerings provide a dynamic and efficient digital foundation to customers globally, aided by an extensive ecosystem of partners. Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, VMware is committed to being a force for good, from its breakthrough innovations to its global impact.

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VPN

Banyan Security Research Uncovers Primary Considerations Influencing Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) Adoption

Banyan Security | June 28, 2022

Banyan Security, a leading provider of Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) solutions, today revealed new research highlighting organizations’ preferences and hesitations for adopting modern remote access solutions. The independent survey was conducted by Sapio Research and engaged over 400 senior decision makers from mid- to large-sized companies in the U.S. and Canada, who are responsible for IT security and are aware of both virtual private networks (VPN) and ZTNA. The key findings from this study include: Over half (54%) of VPN owners stated that secure remote access is a priority at this time. VPN usage is still prevalent among a majority (90%) of security teams who have highlighted cost, time, and difficulty as reasons to not move forward with ZTNA adoption. Almost all organizations (97%) say that adopting a zero trust model is a priority, with 93% of organizations having committed a budget to enhance their VPN or move toward ZTNA within the next year or two. More than half (53%) of respondents have already started rolling out zero trust solutions. Personal Devices and VPNs Do Not Mix The last two years have shifted how we work, producing a new remote workforce that was essentially created overnight. As highlighted in this study, this has resulted in most workers – in this case 51% of respondents – using a combination of corporate and personal devices to connect to business applications and resources. Personal devices often used by less security-conscious family members. This creates a very risky environment as personal devices are easy targets for threat actors especially since IT teams cannot fully monitor activity on these devices. Additionally, personal devices are often used by other family members – particularly children – which make them even more susceptible to malware and other viruses. Despite known security issues, VPN usage continues to thrive, with 90% of respondents currently using a VPN in some capacity for secure remote access. When access is permitted on a personal device, it creates a risky situation for not only the user, but the entire organization. VPNs lack many of the application-level access controls and integrated security that are common in ZTNA solutions. As a result, cybercriminals will often target VPNs because a single set of compromised credentials can provide all of the access needed to carry out a data breach, ransomware incident, or other attacks. “As this study shows, VPN usage continues to be prevalent, often viewed as ‘good enough’ for remote access among organizations simply because that is what they have always used, What this doesn’t account for is the poor administrative and end user experience, not to mention that on-premises access must be handled with separate, siloed tools. We have plenty of evidence to show that legacy VPNs no longer adequately protect nor provide consistent and easy access to corporate resources for today’s ‘work from anywhere’ workforce.” Jayanth Gummaraju, CEO & Co-Founder of Banyan Security Key Drivers for ZTNA A majority of the respondents (97%) stated that adopting a zero trust model is a priority for their organization, where 44% said they have plans to roll out zero trust but are in the early stages, while 53% said they have already begun to roll out zero trust solutions. For organizations who have begun to roll out ZTNA solutions, the survey revealed that secure remote access (48%), improving the end user experience (34%) and eliminating exposure to VPN vulnerabilities (34%) were the top three drivers in their decision to choose ZTNA. Unlike VPNs, ZTNA provides access on a case-by-case basis, which is decided based on user, device, and application-level access and security controls. What’s Holding VPN Users Back from Making the Switch? Over two thirds of organizations (69%) believe implementing a ZTNA strategy would require a large undertaking. Aside from the general familiarity and comfortable usage of their traditional VPN solution, organizations stated that cost/budget constraints are the biggest barriers (62%) for VPN users to adopt ZTNA. Thirty percent of VPN owners said that it would be difficult to implement ZTNA infrastructure in their current security environment; however, 82% of respondents stated they would likely implement ZTNA if there was an easily deployable, inexpensive option. Apathy also appears to be one of the biggest barriers preventing VPN owners from adopting ZTNA solutions with 46% of respondents stating that modern, secure remote access is not a priority at this time. “While it is good to see that awareness of ZTNA solutions amongst IT security professionals continues to grow, the actual implementation of a ZTNA architecture is still considerably low, with just over 17% of respondents having truly begun to roll out a ZTNA strategy,” continued Gummaraju. “As we look toward a future where remote and hybrid work are the standard for most organizations, it’s encouraging to see that IT teams are looking beyond VPNs at more comprehensive zero trust network access solutions.” Research Methodology The survey was conducted among 410 Senior Decision Makers from mid- to large-sized companies in the U.S. and Canada, who are responsible for IT security and are aware of both VPN and ZTNA. The interviews were conducted online by Sapio Research in April 2022 using an email invitation and an online survey, with results accurate to ± 4.8% at 95% confidence limits. About Banyan Security Banyan Security provides secure, zero trust “work from anywhere” access to infrastructure and applications for employees, developers, and third parties without relying on network-centric legacy VPNs. Deep visibility provides actionable insight while continuous authorization with device trust scoring and least privilege access deliver the highest level of protection with a great end user experience. Banyan Security protects tens of thousands of employees across multiple industries, including finance, healthcare, manufacturing, and technology.

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VIRTUAL SERVER INFRASTRUCTURE

Liqid Welcomes VMware Cloud CTO to its Board of Directors

Liqid | June 03, 2022

LIQID Inc., one of the world’s leading software companies delivering data center composability, announced today that the company has welcomed VMware Cloud CTO Marc Fleischmann as a member of the company’s Board of Directors. With a technology career spanning IT infrastructure, cloud and data services, machine learning and analytics, and global IT business services, Fleischmann will collaborate with the Liqid Board and the company’s leadership team to identify new opportunities to expand Liqid Matrix™ composable disaggregated infrastructure (CDI) software into new world-class solutions and services for Liqid’s customers and partners. “Marc’s expertise will be invaluable as Liqid continues to expand our footprint from edge to cloud and everywhere in between, and we are excited to welcome Marc to the Liqid board, As a technology leader at VMware, Marc intimately understands the challenges IT is facing and how new solutions like CDI are being incorporated into the data center in tandem with virtualization, artificial intelligence (AI), and other high-value applications. We look forward to working with him as CDI becomes central to evolving data center architectures.” Sumit Puri, CEO & Cofounder, Liqid At VMware, Fleischmann is the CTO for business franchises within the organization such as VMware Managed Cloud (VMC - on AWS, Azure, and GCP), the VMware Cloud Provider Program (VCPP, a $10B ecosystem), Cloud Foundation (VCF) private clouds, HCI, vSphere, and vSAN. Before joining VMware as Cloud CTO, Fleischman was founder and CEO for storage software company Datera, and social gaming company Smeet. Fleischmann is also a founder of Europe's largest open-source ecosystem hub, the Open Source Business Alliance, which has more than 150 active members across the continent. He has also held leadership positions at Innotek, Microsoft, Pixelworks, Transmeta, and HPE. “As AI is infused into every element of the enterprise, organizations need innovative new ways to approach infrastructure that are more dynamic and flexible, while also making responsible choices when weaving together solutions for sustainable data center ecosystems that can answer the proliferation of data,” Fleischmann said. “I look forward to working with the Liqid team to identify growth opportunities for their composable disaggregated infrastructure solutions, forge powerful industry alliances, and better understand how CDI thrives in an edge-to-cloud world.” Liqid Matrix software enables IT users to configure and scale bare-metal servers in seconds from pools of disaggregated compute, accelerator, storage, and networking resource pools to address business needs in real-time. Resources can be released when no longer needed, for use by other applications. This new approach to infrastructure management helps avoid the costly overprovisioning, power and cooling challenges, unlocking new levels of efficiency and sustainability. To learn more about how Liqid Matrix software solutions seamlessly integrate with VMware virtualization technologies, read this solutions brief. Schedule an appointment with an expert on solutions based on Liqid Matrix CDI software-based and set up a free infrastructure evaluation by going here. Follow Liqid on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay up to date with the latest Liqid news and industry insights. About Liqid Liqid’s composable infrastructure software platform, Liqid Matrix ™, unlocks cloud-like speed and flexibility plus higher efficiency from on-prem infrastructure. Now IT professionals can configure, deploy, and scale physical, bare-metal servers in seconds, then reallocate valuable accelerator and storage resources via software as needs evolve. Dynamically provision previously impossible systems or scale existing investments, and then redeploy resources where needed in real-time. Unlock cloud-like datacenter agility at any scale and experience new levels of resource and operational efficiency with Liqid.

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Introduction to Allot’s NFV solutions that simplify the deployment and integration, giving service providers fast time to market for new services at reduced costs.

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