When you hear the term “cloud computing,” Amazon, Google, VMware, and Microsoft are the companies that you most likely think of first. Well, it seems Cisco Systems wants a spot on that list of companies known for their cloud services. Cisco announced in March that it plans to begin offering Cisco Cloud Services to its corporate customers. Cisco is fully committed to making this happen and is ready to invest more than one billion dollars over the next two years to do so. I would venture to say that Cisco is putting its money where its mouth is to enter and compete in a market that is now led by Amazon.
Articles Tagged with UCS
Days after announcing its converged infrastructure platform, the Active System 800, Dell is already dropping hints about its future development path, confirming its intention to use the tech it acquired with RNA Networks to deliver new storage options.
Speaking at the Dell Storage Forum in Sydney last week, Ben Roscoe (Dell, General Manager – PowerVault Data Management) said the company is looking to use the technology acquired with RNA Networks to provide “integration points closer to the server”. This builds directly from the presentation that Don Ferguson (Dell CTO Dell Software Group) and Jai Menon (Dell CTO Enterprise Solutions Group) gave at the Dell Enterprise Strategy Update in San Francisco last week where Dell introduced the Active System 800. Ferguson and Menon shared their vision on how pooling server-side flash across multiple Active System nodes would speed performance of database and web apps.
Dell was in San Francisco last week to host its Enterprise Strategy Update, staking its claim to the x86 top spot with the announcement of its big converged infrastructure platform, the Active System 800.
Three years ago, Dell was just another PC/server maker fighting for market share in a commodity market. The ultra-lean manufacturing processes that had previously allowed it a significant price advantage over its competitors had been eroded as other manufacturers emulated Dell’s approach, leaving it with little to differentiate it from its competitors other than memories of past advertising campaigns. While its reputation for poor support and burning batteries was behind it, my personal perception of Dell, strongly colored by the large number of Dell laptops that expired at my hands, was not good.
However, in the last two years my view of Dell has been slowly changing. A new focus on data center technologies, a string of successful acquisitions and some fresh blood in key leadership positions has revitalized the company, forcing me to reassess Dell’s position in the enterprise technology ecosystem. Suffice to say, this is not the Dell I used to know.
I have spent a great deal of time lately working with the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS). This computing platform is really quite impressive with its power and flexibility, but my expectations about the platform have really changed since I completed the UCS training. During the training classes that I attended, both the design and install courses emphasized that the Cisco UCS platform would be a collaborative platform that would bring the different groups like Storage, Network, and Server each working their own functional area of responsibility within UCS based on role permissions. That sounded great. The network team can create and trunk the VLANS and the storage team could add the boot targets as well as assign the LUNS. This platform is a true collective effort by all teams right?
Unsurprisingly, the two press releases have more than a little bit in common:
“Cisco today announced that the company will resell <Vendor> <Product> as part of an integrated desktop virtualization solution that is based on Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) … [The] Solution is one of the core module of Cisco Virtualization Experience Infrastructure (VXI) that delivers a complete virtual workspace by unifying virtual desktops, voice and video to enable an exceptionally flexible, secure work environment and uncompromised user experience.”
Since the introduction of virtualization there has been sheer joy and excitement when having to work with application owners on the amount of resources they will need and not what they really think they want. I have seen all kinds of minimum, maximum, and special recommendation for all kinds of application over the years. In most cases, applications have evolved to be able to thrive in a virtual environment without too many limitations. Now it seems we have to verify which VMware features are fully supported with certain virtualized application also.