Cisco, NetApp, and VMWare have joined forces. And what births forth from this trifecta? An effort to improve virtualization security. Dubbed “secure multi-tenancy design architecture,” its basic job is to show clients how to pinpoint applications that use the same physical network, server and storage resources in huge networks and adjust resources correctly. Here's a little more info...

Where will you see the big three? The enterprise market is being courted, with services geared towards people who already use Cisco Nexus Switches, vSphere from VMware and NetApp's FAS storage. The white paper talks about how it might be difficult for some people to link all thse things together, but that with this partnership, the challenges will seem easy.
The design reference architecture has been jointly tested and validated as a Cisco Validated Design so customers can quickly assess their needs and deploy integrated solutions from Cisco, NetApp and VMware that meet the stringent requirements of their dynamic data centers.
In plain English, all three are looking to make it safe and easy when deploying virtualized applications in the mixed product atmosphere. Added bonus? Channel parters can sell hardware and software from a mix of the three. We love variety and integration, it's good for everyone.

Interesting tid-bit: VMware is owned by EMC, a longtime rival of NetApp. But there's no cold-virtualization-war. It seems like a natural clandestine partnership since both products (NetApp and VMWare's) are strong contenders in the virtualization world. Even more interesting, Cisco seems to be playing the fence by working with both EMC and NetApp at the same time. Does this mean potential problems down the road, or a move for big companies to embrace all?

As far as support, all three companies have offered their help for the conglomeration they've created. Maybe there's a trend starting towards companies working together?