Opinion: Nutanix Acropolis and VMware


I was lucky enough to attend the inaugural Nutanix .NEXT conference in Miami the last 3 days.  I learned a lot and met many new faces.  Here is the bottom line:

Nutanix has released their flavor of the KVM hypervisor dubbed "Acropolis".

So what does that mean for you VMware shops?

Right now, possibly lower or complete removal of hypervisor licensing costs.  However, VMware is a leader for a reason, so you will likely need to augment by using something like VMTurbo to manage and give you smarter DRS like capability plus more.  I'll need to read-up on Acropolis feature sets, but the fair comparisons would likely be between the base vSphere ESXi editions (including vCenter)  vs Acropolis/Prism and/or the vCloud Suite vs. Acropolis/Prism/VMTurbo combo.  It's going to come down to features and price.

I'm thinking personally that it "MIGHT" be cheaper to go an Acropolis/Prism/VMTurbo route strictly from a licensing perspective, but have yet to price everything out.  Taking VMTurbo out, I think would most certainly save from a licensing perspective.  The argument may be hardware vendor lock-in, but that is slowly dissolving w/ Nutanix I think.

Through Nutanix Prism software, they even give you the capability of swapping out the ESXi hypervisor w/ the click of a button.  VM's will be migrated to the different hypervisor too, albeit they will be shutdown for the migration process, but looks to be completely automated.

Kinda curious if that is a two way street though.  Meaning, could I change from Acropolis to Hyper-V or back to ESXi?
[Update: Right now, it's a one-way street.  Other things to consider, no cloud stack for Prism/Acropolis to speak of currently.  Still early, but worth keeping an eye on.]

Regardless, all this means, it's an exciting time to be in the infrastructure space.  Hopefully this pushes VMware in the direction of making vSAN a part of the vCloud Suite AND not charging a premium for the 'all-flash' edition of vSAN.  Quite honestly, VERY STUPID move on VMware's part.  it's only shown in that article, so I'm hoping they reverse that idea.  I'm already paying a premium on SSD's and they want me to pay more for licensing!?  Get real.

Right now, technology-wise, I feel Nutanix 'appears' to have the simplicity side of things going for them.  VMware, it's unfortunately quite complicated, but very feature-rich.  The bigger thing that Nutanix will have to worry about though is public cloud adoption.  Yes, they can utilize it too, but will I care?  If I use the public cloud 'efficiently and correctly', on-premise becomes a small pie.

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