VMware vSphere and Virtual Infrastructure Security: Securing the Virtual Environment

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That requires richer visibility and context into the applications and data most critical to our customers.

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We will be delivering a new managed solution that leverages AppDefense for precisely that reason. Puppet Enterprise integrated with AppDefense enables security professionals to easily collaborate with operations teams to make security pervasive in the application development cycle, instead of the traditional practice of bolting security on at the end. This makes applications more resilient to attacks and enables DevOps practices to extend to security teams. Your email address will not be published.

Securing the virtual environment

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Author Haletky, Edward. Computer security. Virtual computer systems -- Security measures. Cloud computing -- Security measures. Now, for the first time, leading VMware expert Edward Haletky brings together comprehensive guidance for identifying and mitigating virtualization-related security threats on all VMware platforms, including the new cloud computing platform, vSphere.

Haletky doesn't just reveal where you might be vulnerable; he tells you exactly what to do and how to reconfigure your infrastructure to address the problem. VMware vSphere and Virtual Infrastructure Security begins by reviewing basic server vulnerabilities and explaining how security differs on VMware virtual servers and related products. Next, Haletky drills deep into the key components of a VMware installation, identifying both real and theoretical exploits, and introducing effective countermeasures.

Contents Ch.

Emerson Rocha

What is a Security Threat? Holistic View from the Bottom Up Ch. Storage and Security Ch. Clustering and Security Chatper 6. Deployment and Management Ch. Operations and Security Ch. Virtual Machines and Security Ch. Virtual Networking Security Ch. Virtual Desktop Security Ch. Security and Virtual Infrastructure Ch. Other aspects to consider in the management layer are the log management, the alerting system, the SSL certificates generation, distribution and validation, and so on. A VM can attack the other layers, and this was already being discussed. Note that can also bring a direct attack on the virtualized resources, for example in order to consume them too much and exhausted them rapidly.

This usually requires a good resources management, but you have also to consider that each VM has some implicit limits in the configured resources.

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VMs must also be protected by other VMs, but in this case, the isolation pillar and specific network and security solution can minimize those threads. As already written VM isolation is theoretical, but the real world presents some possible attacks: for example, am academic research has demonstrated that is theoretically possible leverages Transparent Page Sharing TPS to gain unauthorized access to data under certain highly controlled conditions. For this reason, in vSphere 6.

But a new trend is now also to protect VMs from the underline infrastructure: for example in case of a public cloud service, the consumer may have some concern on how the provider manages the security and privacy of the data. VM hardening is the first step. Also, at VMworld , a new product has been announced: VMware AppDefense a data center endpoint security product that protects applications running in virtualized environments. But there is more to protect your VMs from the other layers: possible threads can came from the management layer or also other layer where you can access the VM data and mining the confidentially of them.

Protect the stored data is only a part: you need also to encrypt or make secure the network connections. For the infrastructure part all communications between vCenter and hosts are usually encrypted. And also vMotion, until vSphere 6. The encryption happens on a per-VM level without the needs of certicates or external keys management like with VM encryption. VSAN from StarWind eliminates any need for physical shared storage just by mirroring internal flash and storage resources between hypervisor servers.

Furthermore, the solution can be run on the off-the-shelf hardware. Such design allows VSAN from StarWind to not only achieve high performance and efficient hardware utilization but also reduce operational and capital expenses. TPM could be an essential tool to storage specific security information, like with the secure boot option discussed in the host part.


In vSphere 6. Finally, in vSphere 6. Filed under: Software by Andrea Mauro. Free Webinar. Register Now. Home StarWind Blog Security threats in a virtual environment. Security threats in a virtual environment Posted by Andrea Mauro on August 9, Virtual environment structure A virtual environment is built with different layers that basically can be summarized and simplified in the following schema: Some part can have multiple layers as well, for example a VM is still structured in a hardware layer, an Operating System OS layer, an application layer.

  • The Cloud’s Core Virtual Infrastructure Security.
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Micro-segmentation: with NSX or other network virtualization solutions is possible to implement security policy at the VM layer with the desired granularity. Inside the VM there are other specific solutions, like AppDefense. Encryption: data must be protected at each layer, both for data at rest and data in motion. Multi-Factor Authentication: authentication is usually the weakest part, mostly for too simple passwords or passwords that are not changed periodically.


Host layer There are different possible techniques, depending of course by the virtualization layer: Limit administrative user access and manage a proper authentication, authorization, and accounting policy. Limit services and network connection in order to minimize the attack surface. Use only secure connections and avoid weak SSL ciphers.