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Worried About Virtualization & Security? InfoWorld’s “Virtualization Executive Forum” Isn’t…

On September 24-25th, InfoWorld will host their Virtualization Executive Forum in NYC which promises "…two days of
technical breakout sessions, case studies and industry expertise on
server, desktop, application, storage and file virtualization

Here’s the overview:

Designed for those
who are evaluating where to begin and for those already implementing
virtualization technologies, InfoWorld’s Virtualization Executive Forum

  • Analyst perspectives on innovative uses of virtualization adoption
    rates and trends, and policy-based datacenter automation
  • In-depth
    sessions examining Virtual Machines and Security, Open Source
    Virtualization, Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery, and more.
  • Industry
    Keynotes from IT end users addressing the challenges, pitfalls,
    results, and benefits of their implementations
  • A
    spotlight on Green IT practices and its potential for cost savings and
    reducing power and cooling needs in large datacenters.

addition to the in-depth case studies and industry panels you have come
to expect from InfoWorld’s Executive Forums, this fourth edition has
added another key ingredient to the mix: more opportunities for you and your peers to  collaborate and share experiences.

For an "executive forum" they have an interesting split-track breakout agenda; one track features case studies and the other focuses on technical presentations and panels.

Here’s the rub, did you notice that the word "security" appears only twice in the entire agenda, once in the keynote address and once more in a case-study breakout session on day two regarding applications of virtualization.  While I recognize that this is supposedly targeted at "executives," let’s take a look at the technical track breakout topics:

  • Vendor Crossfire: x86 Server Virtualization
  • Getting Started with Server Virtualization
  • Technical Track: Physical to Virtual Migration
  • Leveraging Virtualization for Information Availability and Business Continuity
  • Lessons from Big Iron: The Power of RISC UNIX Virtualization
  • Open Source Hypervisor: Zeroing in on Xen
  • VM Management and Monitoring
  • Scaling Virtual Infrastructure

Virt_spotlight_4Not a mention of security in the bunch.  This is asinine. If you’re at all curious as to why security is an after-thought in emerging markets, look no further than this sort of behavior. 

…and don’t just tell me that security is "assumed."

If the executives who attend this two day forum walk away with a head full of fun new ideas and cautionary tales regarding virtualization and the closest thing to security they got was the valet guarding the doughnuts during the break, don’t anybody get surprised in 18 months when the house of cards come tumbling down.

InfoWorld, what the hell!?  How about ONE session — even a panel — titled something as simple as "Virtualization and Security – A Discussion You Need to Have."

In fact, you’re welcome to at least just print out my presentation from a couple of days ago and give it to your attendees.  At least they’ll walk away with something relating to security and virtualization.  850+ people from my blog already have more information on security and virtualization *for free* than is being presented at the forum.

Listen, I feel so strongly about this that I’ll speak for free on the topic — I’ll pay my own hotel, airfare, etc…and you can keep the doughnuts during the break.

By the way, I find it deliciously ironic that when I clicked on the "Visit Virtualization Portal" link in the above graphic, I was greeted by this little gem:


I’m sure this is probably running on a "real" server.  A virtualized instance would never have this sort of problem, right? 😉


  1. August 26th, 2007 at 20:00 | #1

    Don't worry Hoff, 2 out of 3 ain't bad – security in virtual environments, the next big thing

    My friend Chris Hoff has himself all worked up. In fact Hoff is in a huff. What has Christofer (for those who may not realize he spells his name funny) so worked up you ask? It seems the good folks

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