Technologies VMware Explore 2022

Data Infrastructure for Modern Applications

Over the last few years, VMware has seen growing interest from our customers in helping them build robust data infrastructure. They are looking to support the growth of data collected across clouds and to accelerate the value retrieved from data. As Matt Turk from FirstMark put it, “To succeed, every modern company will need to be not just a software company but also a data company.” Two recent blogs by Andreesen Horowitz (Emerging Architectures for Modern Data Infrastructure here and here) validate that idea: “Many of today’s fastest growing infrastructure startups build products to manage data.” And “Data (and data systems) are contributing directly to business results – not only in Silicon Valley tech companies but also in traditional industry.”

However, the tools and best practices for data infrastructure evolve incredibly fast. So much so that it is difficult to follow the latest technical trends, emerging tools (both proprietary and open source), and what should be used for what use case. According to this study by BCG, the result is that only a fraction of enterprises are successful in using data effectively in production.

Looking at VMware customers, they must manage an increasing number of database types and instances. This trend is fueled by the digital modernization of enterprises and the emergence of modern applications becoming central to their businesses. The customer requirements go beyond traditional relational databases and include in-memory databases, data warehouses, key-value stores, streaming and messaging systems, etc. We term all these collectively as “data services.”

In addition, most VMware customers today utilize a combination of on-premises and cloud deployments for different businesses, applications, and use cases. This confirms the prediction from IDC FutureScape that “over 90% of enterprises worldwide will rely on a mix of on-premises/dedicated private clouds, several public clouds, and legacy platforms to meet their infrastructure needs.” The bottom line is that each environment has different data services and varied operational models that are complex and expensive to deal with. Ultimately, this means operational and security risks for our customers.

Let us take the example of a global manufacturing company, “Elastic Sky Manufacturing,” ESM for short (the name and details are fictional), with its HQ in the U.S. and dozens of factories across the world:

  • ESM runs an extensive range of applications and data services on-premises, close to or at their factories since many of their customers are government contractors with strict data sovereignty requirements.
  • Over the last few years, ESM has leveraged two public clouds for applications and use cases related to company operations, marketing, and financial planning.
  • Recently, ESM acquired a regional competitor based in France that is using a third public cloud to run their inventory and shipping databases.


This diagram is a simplified example of a real customer who needs to deploy, run, manage and secure dozens of data services across their on-premises data centers across the world and on three public clouds.

Our vision is to help customers like “Elastic Sky Manufacturing” to build, deploy and run their data infrastructure across any cloud, whether private or public, with the same operational model and SLAs (Service Level Agreements) for performance, durability, and security. We are essentially making data as easy to consume and manage as we did for compute, storage, and networking.

We are essentially making data as easy to consume and manage as we did for compute, storage, and networking.

VMware has a comprehensive portfolio of data assets from the acquisition of Pivotal, including VMware Greenplum, SQL, GemFire, and RabbitMQ. Customers today use those products to store, move, process, and query data resources in real-time and at a massive scale, on-premises, on sovereign clouds, and on public clouds. For modern organizations with an extensive number of interconnected data sources, VMware’s data products provide extremely efficient data transport, immediate availability, and the ability to uncover critical insights – to realize the promise of data.

You can learn more about the existing VMware Data product portfolio at the upcoming VMware Explore 2022. Below is a short list of sessions I recommend:

  • Data Infrastructure for Modern Applications [VIB1487US]
  • Introduction to VMware Tanzu Data Services [CEIB1955USD]
  • Going big with VMware Greenplum: 8 Million Queries per day [CEIB1648US]
  • Protect Purdue: Data-Driven University Operations in a Pandemic Powered by VMware Greenplum Analytics: [CEIB1907US]
  • Customer Case Study: Prime Therapeutics: [CEIB1210US]
  • Get DataOps Right with Versatile Data Kit [OSB1478USD]
  • SplinterDB: The Open, High-Performance, Key-Value Store for Modern Hardware [OSB1503USD]

I will be co-leading the session Data Infrastructure for Modern Applications [VIB1487US] with my colleague Rawlinson Rivera. Together, we’ll focus on the problem of deploying and managing data services across VMware clouds, both on-premises and on public cloud infrastructure. We will use a set of demos to highlight how VMware Data Services Manager* is used by Elastic Sky Manufacturing as the data infrastructure backbone for their digital transformation to:

  • Accelerate innovation by giving the app teams self-service consumption of the data services they need to build and run their applications with the cloud experience they expect.
  • Ease operations with observability into resource utilization, fleet management of multiple data services, and flexibility of deployments on VMware Clouds.
  • Increase productivity for data teams by freeing up resources to focus on strategic activities with automated Day 2 operations.
VMware Data Services Manager: Database as a service for on-demand provisioning and automated management of PostgreSQL, MySQL, and SQL Server databases in the vSphere environment.

We’ll also provide a technical preview of VMware’s next-generation data infrastructure services currently under development. Finally, we will discuss how we envision a multi-cloud managed data services experience and what that would mean for customers and partners in the future.

Join us in person for our breakout session, Data Infrastructure for Modern Applications [VIB1487US] – Tuesday, Aug 30, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM PDT.

Looking forward to seeing you at VMware Explore!

* Formerly called Data Management for VMware Tanzu.

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