Data Center Virtualization

Data Center Virtualization covers virtualizing servers, networks, and storage delivering server consolidation, CAPEX savings, IT agility, and improved management. Major areas of focus include the tradeoffs between various virtualization platforms (VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V and Red Hat KVM), the evolution of hypervisors into data center management platforms, (Read More)

VMware’s Software Defined Data Center strategy, and how the SDDC is spurring innovation in storage, networking and server hardware. Covered vendors indlude VMware, Microsoft, Red Hat, CloudPhysics, Hotlink, Tintri, and VMTurbo.

Virtualizing Business Critical Applications – The Performance and Capacity Sizing Problem

PerformanceManagementVMware (and Microsoft) continue to make excellent progress driving the penetration of their data center virtualization offerings. Over half of the servers run by VMware customers are now virtualized. The progress has been so good that now it is time to ask two important questions. Is what is left to virtualize different that what already has been virtualized? And, if what is left is virtualizing business critical applications, will running them on the virtualization platform be any different than what we experience today? Continue reading Virtualizing Business Critical Applications – The Performance and Capacity Sizing Problem

Will Cisco Buy Citrix in Reaction to VMware’s SDDC Strategy?

DataCenterVirtualizationTwo things have popped up recently. One is VMware’s full page ad campaign in the Wall Street Journal. The ad states that VMware has saved companies billions of dollars, and promises to save them billions more – through the Software Defined Data Center. The second that has has popped is rumors that Cisco is going to acquire Citrix. Which brings up an interesting question. Is buying Citrix part of Cisco’s reaction to VMware’s Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) strategy? Continue reading Will Cisco Buy Citrix in Reaction to VMware’s SDDC Strategy?

Windows 2012 Hyper-V – the hypervisor for your Cloud? Part III

DataCenterVirtualizationWindows 2012 Hyper-V is the hypervisor for the cloud. VMware’s vSphere is a dead man walking?

In parts One and Two I shared a chunk of what I learned from Aidan Finn‘s enlightening and entertaining session “Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V & VSphere 5.1 – Death Match” delivered at the E2E Virtulisation Conference in Hamburg.  We’ve considered pricing, scalability and performance, as well as storage  then gone on to consider resource management, security and multi-tenancy and what a flexible infrastructure can give.

Some have found this a useful comparison. Others have highlighted that this isn’t a feature-by-feature comparison and that if it was, the tables would be very different: they would, they’d be longer for a start.  But more importantly, would they give the high view that many are focused on? Is the goal a technical  Top Trump  victory, or alignment to business goals? If aligned, how aligned? A friend used to often quote the difference between cabinet making, carpentry and joinery is effort and measurement: they each had their place, the trick was knowing what level to apply.

In Part III, lets question further Aidan’s premise that Hyper-V kills vSphere. Here we’ll consider High Availability and Resiliency.

Continue reading Windows 2012 Hyper-V – the hypervisor for your Cloud? Part III

Information Superhighway

CloudComputingI can remember back in the day when we connected to the Internet via a modem and were charged by the minute while accessing the Information Superhighway.  Now, the Internet and really, the network it runs on, has pretty much become invisible to the naked eye. Just as we expect the lights to turn on when we flick a switch, we also pretty much expect the Internet to always be on and available without thinking twice about it. Internet service providers have gone from wanting Wi-Fi only in your house to working on providing connectivity to the entire city, giving the metro user Internet access from inside and outside of your home or office. Continue reading Information Superhighway

Threats and Risks in the Cloud

CloudComputingThreats and Risk in the CloudThere are threats to the cloud and there are risks within the cloud. A recent article from Tech Target Search Security blog spurred several thoughts. The main claim here is that there are not enough people who can differentiate threats and risks enough to talk to business leaders who may know very little about security, but do know the business. I have been known to state that there are prominent threats to my data once stored in the cloud and that we should plan to alleviate those threats to reduce our overall risk. But what is the risk?

An analogy comes to mind. Many years ago I ripped my Achilles tendon, and while talking with the doctors they all said that without surgery there was a 50% more likely chance that the Achilles tendon would rip again. So this got me thinking about what they really meant, 50% of what? My next question to the doctors was “how likely is it to fail if I do not have surgery?” Their response was enlightening, there is a 2% failure rate for naturally healed Achilles tendons. Because of that number, I realized that the failure rate for those tendons that undergo surgery is really only 1% vs 2% without. Well that put a different picture on everything. I went without surgery as that particular area of the body has very thin skin, not as much blood flow, and would take a long time to heal from surgery and there was always the risk of picking up something in the hospital, however remote at the time.

So the real question is what is the true risk to an environment if the threat becomes a reality? Continue reading Threats and Risks in the Cloud

Windows 2012 Hyper-V – the hypervisor for your Cloud? Part II

DataCenterVirtualizationWindows 2012 Hyper-V is the hypervisor for the cloud, VMware’s vSphere is a dead man walking?

In Part I I shared a chunk of what I learned from Aidan Finn‘s enlightening and entertaining session delivered at the E2E Virtulisation Conference in Hamburg tastefully titled, “Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V & VSphere 5.1 – Death Match”. In Part I we looked at pricing, scalability and performance, as well as storage in questioning how bold this statement was.

Pure license-cost wise, it more straightforward to run Microsoft Hyper-V than add another licensed hypervisor: note that Hyper-V does have a free offering (although this version doesn’t cover the virtual Windows Server instance licenses). We showed that scalability wise, Hyper-V can better common competition. Storage-wise Hyper-V, as should be expected from the newest offering, supports the newest technology: 4k sector sizes, and had the largest virtual disk support. Still, if you needed greater than 2TB of storage, you could always join multiple 2TB instances together, or bypass limits by mapping a LUN direct to the VM.

Still, besides pricing simplicity, performance improvements, and updated storage what has Microsoft done for the latest version of Hyper-V? In Part II, lets question further Aidan’s premise that Hyper-V kills vSphere.

Continue reading Windows 2012 Hyper-V – the hypervisor for your Cloud? Part II