VMware acquires Shavlik Technologies for vulnerability, configuration management

Virtualization security giant VMware Inc., has announced it will acquire Shavlik Technologies, extending the company’s security portfolio into patch and configuration management.

Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. New Brighton, Minn-based Shavlik Technologies is a security firm that sells patch and configuration management software that can be configured to work in virtual environments. The company sells both on-premise and SaaS-based software that appeal to small and midsized businesses.
In March, Shavlik announced VMware GO, a SaaS offering it developed with VMware, which assists SMBs with deployment and management of VMware vSphere software. Mark Shavlik, CEO of Shavlik, said the company has been building its portfolio around its presence in the SMB market. Last Spring, the company announced a Web-based version of its software, stripped down to vulnerability and virtual machine management.
"The enthusiasm, creativity and operational excellence of our two companies will allow us to better serve our global customers and partners by accelerating IT management innovations," Shavlik said in a statement.
VMware said the two companies would develop a complete portfolio for managing, monitoring and securing IT environments, including developing a centralized IT management console and automated tools for patch management, compliance and configuration for virtual environments. The software could be used by managed service providers to better service their SMB customers, VMware said.

"With the Shavlik acquisition, VMware will be able to provide simple to use and affordable management services developed to address the specific demands of SMBs," Raghu Raghuram, senior vice president and general manager of cloud infrastructure and management at VMware, said in a statement.
VMware has slowly built up its security arsenal starting with the acquisition of Determina in 2006, which sold host-based intrusion prevention system (HIPS) technology that were configured to work in a variety of virtual scenarios.  It acquired BlueLane Technologies in 2008. BlueLane can sit between the hypervisor and the virtual machine for application-aware firewalling, visibility of traffic between virtual machines and intrusion prevention capabilities.
In 2010, VMware acquired Tricipher for identity and access management services. Tricpher provides secure authentication and single sign-on access for SaaS-based software. 
VMware’s acquisitions make it clear that it expects to grow out the features of its security product sets, said Pete Lindstrom, a research director with Spire Security. Lindstrom said Shavlik has a stellar reputation in the security industry for its patch management capabilities.  Shavlik has been slowly building out its capabilities into configuration and compliance management and extended it for virtual systems, he said.
“We’ve been talking forever about potential benefits for patching in virtual environments,” Lindstrom said. “It will be interesting to see if we get some traction into the benefits we’ve anticipated with patching for virtual instances.”


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