VMware just closed an OEM agreement with Likewise to embed its technology in future versions of vSphere.
Likewise is a US company that offers several products for enterprise authentication. The most popular is simply called Open and it’s available free of charge as open source (GPL and LGPL licenses).
Likewise Open uses Pluggable Authentication Modules (PAM) and Name Service Switch (NSS) to authenticate non-Windows machines to Windows domains.
It supports Kerberos. NTLM and SPNEGO authentication. It also offers single sign-on for SSH services.
This partnership will allow Microsoft Active Directory users to seamlessly log-in on ESX/ESXi hosts.
virtualization.info received unconfirmed tips that this feature may appear within vSphere 4.1, currently in private beta.