SAN FRANCISCO – Virtualization solutions vendor VMware and its parent company, EMC Corp., have announced plans to collaborate on new server-based storage infrastructure with an initial focus on VDI, test & dev and disaster recovery in small and medium-sized business environments.

The companies made the announcement this week at VMworld, VMware’s annual user conference. The collaboration will include joint research and development as well as bringing together existing solutions around the new ways applications are consuming storage in virtualized environments.

“EMC and VMware together are defining a new class of highly integrated storage infrastructure to reduce cost and complexity in VMware environments for SMBs and SMEs,” said Jeremy Burton, EMC’s executive vice-president of product operations and marketing, in a statement. “A best-of-breed offering based on the combination of VMware Virtual SAN with EMC’s market leading storage hardware and software portfolio will help expand the market opportunity for both companies.”

The companies say their initial focus around software-defined storage collaboration will zero in on the SMB market, where customers may use vSphere singularly across a broad set of workloads, which they say makes the tight integration of VMware Virtual SAN with VMware vCenter Server compelling.  They’ll look to create join EMC/VMware solutions to bring together hardware and software in tested and validated solutions. They’ll also look at customer use cases for implementing software-defined storage in Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, test/dev and disaster recovery environments.

“VMware and EMC are helping drive transformative change to software-defined storage in virtualized environments,” said Raghu Raghuram, executive-vice president of cloud infrastructure and management with VMware, in a statement. “Our new collaboration with EMC is designed to help customers adopt VMware Virtual SAN and build storage architectures that are radically simpler and more efficient while delivering increased agility and flexibility.”

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