Xsigo Promises Bold Data Center Management Advance

by David Needle

With backers that include Dell and Salesforce, Xsigo will announce what it says will be a virtual I/O breakthrough for the data center.

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What does Xsigo have planned for the upcoming VMworld conference later this month? The company isn't quite ready to tip its hand, save for a few bold claims in a media invite.

"Please join us on Aug. 31 for an industry news event certain to make computing history. Xsigo is launching a significant new virtual I/O technology that accelerates the advancement of data center convergence – a key enabler of cloud computing," an invite sent to InternetNews.com reads.

"The launch supports a growing opposition to vendor lock-in and ridiculously complex and expensive converged infrastructures currently available from the likes of Cisco and others, allowing only a few 'privileged' data centers to participate in the cloud revolution," the invitation continues. "Xsigo's new virtual I/O product changes everything."

The invite also notes executives from Dell (NASDAQ: DELL) and Salesforce (NYSE: CRM) will be on hand to help back Xsigo's announcement, along with John Doerr and Ray Lane, partners at well-known Silicon Valley venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, an investor in Xsigo.

A spokesperson for the company said the event will have a boxing theme pitting Xsigo against "vendor lock-in and high costs."

Analyst Greg Schulz says, he doesn't expect anything "revolutionary" from Xsigo, rather something that's an extension or enhancement to what the firm already offers, which could still well be of interest to IT buyers not familiar with the company.

"Xsigo's got a great approach as an alternative to Cisco, Brocade and others when it comes to I/O virtualization," Schulz, founder and principal analyst with the consulting firm StorageIO, told InternetNews.com.

Schulz said Xsigo already offers a cheaper alternative to Cisco's switches and adapters for networking and with the growing interest in cloud computing he thinks the company could leverage its advantage further.

"By emphasizing the cloud, Xsigo is playing to a popular market theme -- who's not talking about using the cloud," said Schulz. "By having Dell and Salesforce on hand, they can show how two big companies used Xsigo for major cloud implementations."

Analyst Charles King said Xsigo may be planning to emphasize an open-systems theme.

"Many x86 vendors have been positioning themselves against what they consider to be more closed, proprietary scale-up systems, in favor of systems that can be connected and interconnected in a seamless way," King, principal analyst of Pund-IT told InternetNews.com. "Xsigo's going to have Dell there, which is primarily a pure x86 play, so it'll be pretty interesting to hear what they say."

David Needle is the West Coast bureau chief at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.

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This article was originally published on Wednesday Aug 18th 2010
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