VMware has announced the end of the road for third-party vSwitches.
Moving forward, VMware will have a single virtual switch strategy that focuses on two sets of native virtual switch offerings – VMware vSphere® Standard Switch and vSphere Distributed Switch™ for VMware vSphere, and the Open virtual switch (OVS). This strategy is about investing in the priorities of our customers and simplifying the platform to create the best, most secure experience possible.
- The APIs that drive the configuration of VDS and vSwitch could be be enough for third-party SDN platforms like Cisco ACI.
- Why spend money supporting third-party switches? VMware partners need to focus on vRealise and private cloud. The vSwitch isn’t relevant anymore.
- Software quality of the third-party vSwitches seems to be poor and likely VMware gets blamed for them not working. For example, Cisco NX1K, AVS and VM-FEX have never worked reliably for most customers, judging from regular comments I’ve heard. (Check out this Reddit thread as a sample.)
- Don’t give competitors an entrance in the ecosystem. SDN platforms can get useful meta-data without controlling the vSwitch. Why let customers use an IBM/HPE/ Cisco product when they should be using the APIs in vSphere?
Finally, it’s a reminder that whoever owns/controls the platform determines what you can do with it. The same warning applies to SDN platforms like VMware NSX and Cisco ACI (among others) when they let partners build products on ‘open’ APIs on a closed platform.
Link: Software is Eating the Network: Going Native on Network Virtualization – The Network Virtualization Blog – https://blogs.vmware.com/networkvirtualization/2017/03/native-vswitch.html
This graphic was posted in a Reddit thread on the subject. It spells things out reasonably clearly:
Image Source: Reddit: VMware puts an end to Cisco Nexus 1000V : networking