Canonical and VMware (VMW) forged a closer bond this week with the announcement of certified Ubuntu Linux images in vCloud Air, VMware's new enterprise cloud-computing platform.

The companies announced the news Aug. 21, shortly after reports surfaced of VMware's launch of the new vCloud Air platform as a rebranded version of vCloud Hybrid Services.

The certification means "optimized and fully supported Ubuntu LTS images" will be available in the VMware cloud, according to Canonical, which will support Ubuntu images on the platform through the Ubuntu Advantage professional support package. "Customers can trust Ubuntu running on VMware vCloud Air because Ubuntu is tested, verified and supported by Canonical, and certified by VMware to run in an VMware ESXi environment," said Chris Kenyon, senior vice president of Canonical's Cloud team.

Canonical hopes the move will help to solidfy Ubuntu's position as a major enterprise server operating system for the cloud. The Linux distribution has proven consistently popular in the OpenStack world, and official integration with vCloud Air will help it to establish roots in another segment of the cloud ecosystem.

VMware, meanwhile, hopes the Ubuntu offering will attract more organizations to its cloud platform. "Canonical’s enterprise-class Ubuntu LTS is one of the most popular cloud operating systems requested by vCloud Air customers," said Ajay Patel, vice president of Applications Services, vCloud Air at VMware. "By integrating Ubuntu into our portfolio of pre-configured OS templates, VMware is able to offer our customers another secure and versatile cloud operating system in a quick-to-deploy virtual machine."