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VMware is "killing off" 56 products amid "tectonic" infrastructure shift

Goodbye vSphere Hypervisor. Goodbye Aria Operations. Goodbye NCX. Goodbye HCX. Goodbye more acronyms than we know what to do with; though Broadcom does; at least as standalone SKUs...

Updated January 25: VMware has now deleted the KB ("Knowledge Base") advisory that we sourced the below from. It has clarified its intentions a in fresh KB. Our updated article is here.

Broadcom’s brutal assault on VMware’s product suite continues, with the company’s new owner this week confirming that it is sunsetting a massive 56 VMware products and platforms as standalone SKus – as investors said this week that they anticipated a “tectonic shift” in the infrastructure market as a result. 

In a January 15 advisory VMware confirmed tersely that it was taking a sweeping range of products to “End of Availability” and that “these products are no longer available for purchase” – although most remain advertised enthusiastically, for now, on slick corporate website pages.

(VMware was bought by Broadcom for $69 billion in a deal that closed in November 2023. Its new owner is ruthlessly focused on extracting value from large corporate clients that may struggle or be disinterested in ending use of VMware widely entrenched virtualisation technology.)

Broadcom terminates perpetual licences; muscles VMware customers onto subscriptions

Broadcom said that it is simplifying VMware’s portfolio to “a few offers focused on our best technology”. Products getting the chop include network and security virtualization platform NSX; application mobility platform HCX; “multi-cloud” platform bundle vSPhere+ and many more.

Listing the 56 VMware products and platforms being killed off [Updated January 25: As standalone SKUs] , VMware said: “All licensing options including Perpetual, Support & Subscription (SnS), SaaS/hosted and subscription, as well as all editions, suites and pricing metrics of each product, unless otherwise noted, are included in this announcement. These products are no longer available for purchase.”

The move comes as customers and channel partners have been left rattled by the extent of Broadcom's strategic overhaul at the company with many bewailing a complete lack of clarity on future pricing and products.

What's no longer available?!

The list is as follows:

VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus

VMware vSphere+

VMware vSphere Standard (excluding subscription)

VMware vSphere ROBO

VMware vSphere Scale Out

VMware vSphere Desktop

VMware vSphere Acceleration Kits

VMware vSphere Essentials Kit

VMWare vSphere Essentials Plus Kit (excluding new subscription offering)

VMware vSphere Starter/Foundation

VMware vSphere with Operations Management

VMware vSphere Basic

VMware vSphere Advanced

VMware vSphere Storage Appliance

VMware vSphere Hypervisor

VMware Cloud Foundation (excluding new VCF subscription offering)

VMware Cloud Foundation for VDI

VMware Cloud Foundation for ROBO

VMware SDDC Manager

VMware vCenter Standard

VMware vCenter Foundation

VMware vSAN

VMware vSAN ROBO

VMware vSAN Desktop

VMware HCI Kit

VMware Site Recovery Manager

VMware Cloud Editions/Cloud Packs

VMware vCloud Suite

VMware Aria Suite (formerly vRealize Suite)

VMware Aria Universal Suite (formerly vRealize Cloud Universal)

vMware Aria Suite Term

VMware Aria Operations for Networks (formerly vRealize Network Insight)

VMWare Aria Operations for Networks Universal (formerly vRealize Network Insight Universal)

VMware vRealize Network Insight ROBO

VMWare Aria Operations for Logs (formerly vRealize Log Insight)

VMware vRealize Operations 8 Application Monitoring Add-On

VMware Aria Operations

VMware Aria Automation

VMware Aria Automation for Secure Hosts add-on (formerly SaltStack SecOps)

VMware vRealize Automation SaltStack SecOps add-on

VMware Aria Operations for Integrations (formerly vRealize True Visibility Suite)

VMware Cloud Director

Cloud Director Service

VMware NSX

VMware NSX for Desktop

VMware NSX ROBO

VMware NSX Distributed Firewall

VMware NSX Gateway Firewall

VMware NSX Threat Prevention to Distributed Firewall

VMware NSX Threat Prevention to Gateway Firewall

VMware NSX Advanced Threat Prevention to Distributed Firewall

VMware NSX Advanced Threat Prevention to Gateway Firewall

VMware NSX Advanced Load Balancer (excluding Subscription, SaaS)

VMware Container Networking Enterprise with Antrea

VMware HCX

VMware HCX+

Broadcom said in its short note: “In the future, at the time of renewal, customers will be offered the best subscription products to fit their needs.” 

Very clear.

UPDATED January 25: VMware has belatedly clarified the following in a bid to "bring further clarity to some of the communications contained in the original article related to the End of Availability of certain VMware offerings"

Its portfolio changes can be summarised as follows, VMware said.

  • "VMware Cloud Foundation is VMware’s new solution for customers looking to capture the value of full stack infrastructure with a platform that offers vSpherevSAN and NSX with the full Aria management and orchestration suite with new services included.
  • "VMware vSphere Foundation is VMware’s solution for data center optimization in traditional vSphere environments. It includes Tanzu Kubernetes Grid in addition to Aria Operations and Aria Operations for Logs as part of its standard suite of features. Additionally, customers with lighter requirements such as basic hardware consolidation or virtualization on a very small number of servers can still purchase subscriptions to vSphere Standard and vSphere Essentials Plus Kit.
  • "VMware add-on services are available for VMware vSphere Foundation and VMware Cloud Foundation to further enhance the customer journey and address additional storage, security, disaster recovery, Generative AI and other specific use cases.

Broadcom’s rationalisation of VMware portfolio is having profound ripple effects across the market, analysts at investment bank William Blair said.

Market disruption “is turning out to be more significant than we expected” wrote analyst Jason Adar in a note to clients that suggested Nutanix would be the big winner: “The [reseller] community sees a multiyear runway for the Nutanix Cloud Platform and Nutanix AHV (Acropolis Hypervisor) to take market share from VMware (from vSAN and ESX, respectively)."

“[VMware] customers are already starting to look at alternatives and planning away from their historical dependence on VMware’s dominant ESX hypervisor, with Cisco’s Nutanix channel activity "skyrocketing" in the wake of a recent partnership, he added.

Broadcom is meanwhile looking to offload VMware's "end-user" computing unit for a reported $5 billion. That includes its Workspace ONE and Horizon offerings; respectively an access control, application management, and unified endpoint management platform; and a set of virtual desktop products, with several private equity firms reported by Bloomberg to be interested.

Customers, as The Stack has earlier noted, have other options, but also a whole lot of sunk costs into VMware expertise...

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