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VMware Announces Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge Winners

VMware Announces Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge Winners

Contest Promotes Benefits of Bundling Operating System with Application

SAN FRANCISCO and PALO ALTO, Calif., August 15, 2006 — VMware, Inc., the global leader in software for industry–standard virtualized desktops and servers, today announced the winners of the Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge at LinuxWorld 2006. The Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge began February 27, 2006 and was designed to foster continued innovation in developing virtual appliances, which are pre-built, pre-configured and ready-to-run software applications packaged with the operating system into virtual machines.

Virtual appliances are changing the software distribution paradigm because they allow application builders to choose the best operating system for their application and deliver a turnkey software service to the end user. Hundreds of virtual appliances, including the winning entries, are available for free download at Users can run these virtual appliances on all VMware virtualization products including VMware Player and VMware Server, which are both available for free download at

“We have been very impressed with the overwhelming response and the high-quality entries for the Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge, and it has been great to evaluate the innovative work submitted. A broad range of users are leveraging virtual appliances for adopting, developing with, distributing and administering complex software environments,” said Dr. Mendel Rosenblum, co-founder and chief scientist at VMware and chair of the Ultimate Virtual Appliance Challenge. “In sponsoring the challenge, we have been pleased to see it energize the virtual appliance momentum across both developer and end user communities.”

Contestants were tasked to build useful virtual machine appliances and the judges chose the most useful as follows:

First prize was awarded to Mikko Hiltunen, Erno Kuusela, Joachim Viide, Mika Seppänen and Jani Kenttälä of Oulu, Finland, for creating HowNetWorks. HowNetWorks is an always-on, all-in-one, personal network troubleshooting console for those tired of the “laborious work” of network debugging. No more writing complicated sniffer filters, no more searching for ways to reproduce failures. HowNetWorks takes the next step in sniffer evolution–simply fetch the relevant data and throw it to your favorite analyzer.

Second prize was awarded to Andrew Macdonell, Michael Closson, Paul Nalos and Paul Lu of Edmonton, Alberta, for creating the Trellis NAS Bridge Appliance. The Trellis NAS Bridge Appliance makes it simple to access files across the network regardless of location, operating system or type of file sharing technology (SSH, NFS, SMB, etc.). It simplifies file access while maintaining security.

Third prize was awarded to Michael C. Jett of Senath, Mo., and Kennieth A. Goodwin of Paragould, Ark., for creating Sieve Firewall. Sieve Firewall makes it easy for Windows users to set up and use a transparent bridging firewall without having to learn Linux. The virtual appliance is managed by a Windows GUI application. The resulting XML configuration files are loaded to the Sieve Firewall virtual appliance and filtering can be up and running in minutes. Because the firewall is completely invisible to the outside world, it is not vulnerable to attacks that target more traditional firewalls. Not only can this appliance be used to create safe home networks, it can be used to manage and prioritize traffic in a multi-department, complex business network.

In addition to the top three winners, VMware selected virtual appliances that demonstrated excellence in five categories:

  • Collegiate: Open Network Registrar by Zachary Colgan of Potsdam, N.Y., is a drop-in administration tool that simplifies the simultaneous administration of BIND and DHCP.
  • Community: Hermes Memcached Virtual Appliance by Prabhakar Chaganti of Alpharetta, Ga., is a high-performance, distributed memory, object-caching system that provides a simple and fast caching mechanism to speed up database-driven applications.
  • Consumer: FreeNAS by Olivier Cochard of Paris, France, is a Web-based NAS server operating system based on FreeBSD 6.1 that provides network-attached storage services such as CIFS, FTP, NFS, SSH, SCP, RSYNC and AFP so users can access storage with a diverse set of protocols.
  • Developer: eBrainPool by Jatin Golani of Mumbai, India, automatically shares development environments through the P2P eBrainPool network so developers can search for and connect to other shared development environments that are available to the P2P sharing application. With this P2P network of environments it is no longer necessary to have every developer tool and every OS combination because developers can now share environments with others for specific tasks.
  • Server: Enterprise Encryption Server (EES) by Carl Bourne of Henley on Thames, United Kingdom, is an automated OpenPGP-based data encryption and decryption utility that makes it easy to deploy and manage centralized OpenPGP-compatible encryption resources. Send an unencrypted file to the EES virtual appliance (via FTP or through a shared directory) and it will send back an encrypted version ready to be transmitted securely over the Internet.

The judging panel, led by Dr. Rosenblum, consisted of the following distinguished judges: Jason Brooks, senior analyst at eWEEK; Stephen Elliot, research manager of enterprise systems management software at IDC; Roger Howorth, enterprise editor at IT Week; Tim O'Reilly, founder of O'Reilly Media; Dave Parsons, vice president of engineering at ALG Software and Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu Linux.

About VMware, Inc.

VMware, an EMC company (NYSE: EMC), is the global leader in virtual infrastructure software for industry-standard systems. The world's largest companies use VMware solutions to simplify their IT, fully leverage their existing computing investments and respond faster to changing business demands. VMware is based in Palo Alto, California. For more information, visit or call 650-475-5000.

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