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.

Defense in Depth: Hardware Security

VirtualizationSecurityOn the last Virtualization Security podcast, our guest was Robert Rounsavall, CEO of Trapezoid. Trapezoid is looking into how to alleviate supply chain security issues; in essence, the security of the hardware. At many a presentation, I have asked attendees, “Do you trust the hardware?” Many times the answer is that they do; at other times, it is that they do not. Whether you trust the hardware depends entirely on your thoughts with respect to hardware security. But what can you do about hardware security? What is the worst that can happen if the hardware is infiltrated? Continue reading Defense in Depth: Hardware Security

Dell Delivers UCS Beater (Dude, It’s a Converged Infrastructure!)

Dell100x30aDell 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. Continue reading Dell Delivers UCS Beater (Dude, It’s a Converged Infrastructure!)

Microsoft Hyper-V vs VMware vSphere

DataCenterVirtualizationOne topic that gets discussed quite often is Microsoft Hyper-V vs VMware vSphere, and a quick Google search for comparisons will return at least several hundred thousand hits. There seems to be a large number of posts and articles trying to make a case that one is better than the other by listing and comparing features of the hypervisors themselves one by one. The purpose of this post is not to claim that one platform is better than the other. Is that the best way to really compare the different virtualization technologies as a whole, or should we take a step back and really look at differences in approach for the virtual infrastructure and/or virtual ecosystems? Continue reading Microsoft Hyper-V vs VMware vSphere

Cisco Nexus 1000v: Free unless you want Security

VirtualizationSecurityWhile not particularly new news, the next version of the Cisco Nexus 1000v will be free, unless you want the security features. This is an interesting shift from Cisco with respect to VMware vCloud Director, the Nicira purchase, furthering UCS, and Cisco within non-UCS data centers. However, given other announcements, with respect to OpenStack, perhaps this is more a play to level the playing field between cloud architectures? But what I find most interesting, is that the changes to the Nexus 1000v also align with the changes we see in the vCloud Suites from VMware. Continue reading Cisco Nexus 1000v: Free unless you want Security

How Will VMware’s Distributed Storage Change their Relationships?

DataCenterVirtualizationAt VMworld 2012, VMware presented a Tech Preview of one of their latest ideas, which they termed “Distributed Storage”. So what exactly is this new technology? It is basically locally attached storage.

How is Distributed Storage new?

We know that VMware has allowed the use of local storage since inception; however, access to that storage was limited to the local host only, so it was only utilised for guests that were node-based, e.g., vShield appliances. To delve a little deeper you could use the analogy of a VSA (Virtual Storage Appliance), but unlike the VSA, which is a fully functioning virtual machine, this technology is actually part of the hypervisor. Continue reading How Will VMware’s Distributed Storage Change their Relationships?