Enterprise security solution provider Fortinet (FTNT) is the latest company to join VMware’s NSX partner ecosystem, giving the company access to the company’s network virtualization software. The announcement coincides with the release of Fortinet’s FortiGate-VMX firewall appliance, which offers additional security for vSphere and NSX–managed software-defined data centers (SDDC).

According to Fortinet, FortiGate-VMX is an automated security software solution, enabling users to protect their networks via centralized management across both physical and virtual domains.

"The SDDC promises a highly automated, easily managed platform that embraces and secures all applications, for fast, safe deployment across data centers, clouds and mobile devices," said Mary Yang, vice president of business development at Fortinet, in a statement. "Fortinet and VMware are uniquely positioned to deliver on this promise, providing the highest levels of security in virtualized environments."

FortiGate-VMX will interoperate with VMware virtualization solutions directly in the Software-Defined Data Center with API integration, which is expected to give users additional visibility and control over virtual network traffic, according to the announcement. Fortinet said this deep integration with VMware’s virtual infrastructure also will allow users to automatically protect new workloads.

Here is a list of additional features in FortiGate-VMX, straight from the press release:

  • Current interoperability with VMware vSphere and vCloud Suite
  • Future interoperability with VMware NSX
  • Centralized management across FortiGate-VMX security appliances
  • Visibility into all vSphere virtual network traffic
  • Auto-deployment and provisioning FortiGate-VMX elastically to new ESXi hosts
  • Instant-on protection of new VM workloads
  • Ability to retail session-state across vMotion live migration events
  • Object-based protection rules that follow VM's across IP or MAC address changes

FortiGate-VMX is expected to release in March, although a specific launch date has not been announced.

Fortinet’s announcement comes on the heels of this week’s VMware Partner Exchange 2015 in San Francisco, where the virtualization giant wasted no time in announcing a slew of new products and solutions, including vSphere 6 and vCloud Suite 6. CEO Pat Gelsinger also spoke about the company’s continued emphasis on driving awareness and education for the SDDC as VMware delves deeper into selling software as a service and other subscription-based solutions.