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VMworld: Cisco to Unveil Virtual Switch?

The buzz ahead of VMworld focuses on a rumored virtual switch from Cisco (CSCO), data center initiatives from VMware (VMW) and a blog feud between EMC (EMC) and NetApp (NTAP).

What will the headlines be at VMworld 2008, which begins today?The hottest chatter involves Cisco Systems (CSCO), which is expected to announce a virtual switch during its Tuesday keynote with VMware. It's worth noting that the same reports were circulating in advance of VMworld 2007. But Christopher Hoff at Rational Survivability reports that the schwag bag for participants in Technology Exchange/Partner day includes a flyer on Cisco letterhead titled "Introducing Cisco's Virtual Switch for VMware ESX" (link via the "other" Rich Miller).

VirtuaNews predicts that Cisco will introduce a new network technology called DVN (Distributed Virtual Networking) , a virtual networking management solution that will include a virtual switch named and networking tools for virtual machines.

And what announcements will we see from VMware itself? ComputerWorld has one of the most interesting reports:

The company and its new CEO Paul Maritz hope to wow the 14,000 people expected at its annual conference this week with a vision of a data center anchored to a list of new products, where every resource in it - storage, networking and servers - can shift and respond with fluidity to business needs. Since these products aren't due until sometime next year, underscore the word vision in this announcement.

There are also reports that VMware will unveil details of ESX 4.0, the next generation of the company's “bare-metal” hypervisor that partitions physical servers in multiple virtual machines. has additional information about features expected in the ESX 4 beta.

There's also been a pre-show blog feud between bloggers at EMC and NetApp about storage offerings that will be introduced at VMworld. The exchange started with Nick Triantos from NetApp, who took a shot at EMC for its plans to give away a car at the show. That prompted a response from Chad Sakacs at EMC (who acknowledges that things get "hyperbolic and inflammatory" in the comments) which in turn prompts a post from NetApp Virtualization evangelist Vaughn Stewart invoking comparisons to used car salesmen.

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