CA relaunches its virtualization portfolio, hires former Director at VMware

In February, CA hired Andi Mann, the former Vice President of Research at Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) in February.
In his new role as Vice President of Product Marketing for Virtualization Management, Mann helped to reorganize the go-to-virtualization-market strategy. also received a tip that CA hired Mike O’Malley, the former Director of Analyst Relations and Market Intelligence at VMware.
O’Malley is the Vice President of Product Marketing since January.

The two guys probably worked together at a plan to refresh the company’s image and credibility as a virtualization player.
The process culminated with the relaunch of the CA’s virtualization portfolio, which now includes five products, officially released yesterday:

  • Virtual Assurance
    Virtual Assurance is an event and performance monitoring solution.
    It tracks several components of the virtual infrastructure, like the application traffic response time (even for multi-tier applications), and performs root-cause analysis to help isolate and remediate faults.
    Virtual Assurance, shipping as a physical appliance, currently supports VMware VI3 and vSphere 4.0. CA already announced upcoming support for Microsoft Hyper-V.
  • Virtual Assurance for Infrastructure Managers
    While Virtual Assurance is a stand-alone solution, Virtual Assurance for Infrastructure Managers acts as a sort of gateway to the virtual world for the other CA’s management products, including eHealth Performance Manager, Spectrum Infrastructure Manager, NSM, and Spectrum Automation Manager.
    The product supports VMware VI3 and vSphere 4.0, Citrix XenServer 5.0 and 5.5, Oracle Solaris Containers 10 (for both SPARC and Intel architectures), and IBM LPAR P5 and P6 systems.
  • Virtual Automation
    Virtual Automation is a VM lifecycle management solution, offering provisioning through a self-service portal, an approval workflow, library templates automated configuration, resource pool management, VM tracking, cost accounting, and scheduled de-provisioning.
    The product supports VMware VI3 and vSphere 4.0, as well as Amazon EC2. CA already announced upcoming support for Microsoft Hyper-V.
  • Virtual Configuration
    Virtual Configuration is a configuration management solution that provides configuration discovery, including discovery of server and application dependencies, configuration baselines and validation, detection and remediation of configuration drift, and virtualization dashboards to facilitate change tracking and review, compliance audits, and reporting on environmental status.
    The product supports VMware VI3 and vSphere 4.0, and Citrix XenServer. CA already announced upcoming support for Microsoft Hyper-V.

Virtual Assurance, Virtual Automation, and Virtual Configuration are also available as a bundle called Virtual Foundation Suite.

The last product, Virtual Privilege Manager, doesn’t seem available yet as the CA’s website completely lacks of any literature about the product.
The only details about this piece of the portfolio comes from the press announcement:

CA Virtual Privilege Manager is designed to control privileged access to virtual environments by securing console access to the hypervisor and managing privileged access to all of the virtual images running on the virtualization server as well as the service console. Key capabilities of the solution include privileged user password management for the virtual machines and service console, fine-grained administrative access controls to the hypervisor service console, service console hardening, and original user activity monitoring in virtual environments.

Solely judging from this description it seems that Virtual Privilege Manager is going to compete against HyTrust.
The other products mentioned above instead compete with a wide range of well-established players, including Quest/Vizioncore, Veeam, VKernel, VMware and several others.

CA is a big company with a solid position as infrastructure manager in the physical world, but a leadership in that space doesn’t automatically translates into a leadership in the virtualization market.
The company will have to demonstrate a renewed commitment and a more effective capability to execute if it wants to stay competitive against the more agile virtualization startups that it’s attacking.