What comes to mind when you think about the color blue? Whenever I think about the color blue in nature, I’m transported to the clear blue skies and turquoise ocean waves of Hawaii. For many people, the color blue has a restorative quality: It’s invigorating and puts us back in control of priorities. My affinity for “all things blue,” is why I was attracted to this story about Cisco customer, BlueWave Computing, LLC., a cloud services provider based in Atlanta, Georgia. BlueWave’s existing server and storage infrastructure had reached its limits and was creating performance and reliability issues. That’s when BlueWave decided it was time for a change. They worked with Cisco to reinvigorate their data center, making it ready for next generation of cloud services, and clearing the way for “nothing but blue skies ahead.”
By Carol Shottes, UCS Marketing Manager, Cisco
BlueWave Computing chooses Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS)™ FlexPod solution for its speed, reliability and ease of management.
BlueWave’s challenge was to deliver a new, high-performance cloud service while keeping infrastructure and management costs low. BlueWave had experienced rapid growth in the number of its cloud services customers. As BlueWave’s cloud workload increased and the company brought new services to market, its IT team found itself at the limit of what the company’s existing server and storage infrastructure could offer. BlueWave began experiencing issues with storage, performance, and reliability. And as BlueWave teams worked to address the issues, they became frustrated by the lack of integrated support offered by the former vendor. As a result, the team began searching for a new foundation for its virtual cloud offering, and sought out a unified data center solution supporting the company’s next phase of growth.
“Cisco UCS is optimized to run in a virtualized environment, and it has a clear advantage over competing solutions when it comes to speed, reliability, and ease of management,” says Dan Timko, VP of Cloud Services, BlueWave Computing, LLC “The high-density Cisco UCS infrastructure also offered the ability to scale up our systems more sustainably and profitably.”
Cisco’s FlexPod Solution and BlueWave’s Results – Three times (3X) the Storage Performance and Half the Latency
BlueWave deployed FlexPod in its primary data center in Atlanta, and is built on Cisco(R) UCS B230 M2 Blade Servers, a two-socket platform that delivers high performance and density in a compact, half-width form factor and incorporates NetApp FAS storage. Its all-Cisco network infrastructure includes Cisco Nexus 5548 Switch as the core switch for VLAN management and routing and the Cisco UCS 6248UP 48-Port Fabric Interconnect to provide uniform access to both networks and storage. BlueWave is also using Cisco ASA 5500 Series Adaptive Security Appliances (ASAs) for its edge firewalls, Cisco Catalyst® 3750 Switches for its access layer, and Cisco Catalyst 2960 Switches. Last but not least, BlueWave is using Cisco UCS Manager for easier account management, authentications to LDAP, and role-based access to systems.
BlueWave also appreciates the incremental scalability of UCS, which makes it much less expensive for the company to add more capacity because it does not have to buy a big, expensive chassis, with switches and fiber, every time it needs to scale up. “Scaling becomes cheaper and easier from a labor perspective, because all we need to do in the Cisco UCS model is plug in a new blade, then apply the service profile with UCS Manager,” says Timko. BlueWave can now onboard customers and increase capacity more rapidly and cost effectively. FlexPod cuts time to provision new services in half because Cisco UCS management software reduces the time to deploy server templates.
Boosting Productivity while saving Time, Money and Energy
In addition to saving time and staffing resources, BlueWave is also reducing one of its biggest expenses: power and cooling. “One of the benefits of the density of the FlexPod platform is that we can run more VMs on far fewer blades,” says Timko. “We can effectively double the RAM in the system without doubling the power usage, which makes a significant contribution to our bottom line.”
To read the entire story, BlueWave Builds Bigger Better Cloud
Are you a Game Changer? Discover A Better Data Center with Cisco UCS
Are you a UCS customer who would like to share your story here? I’ll be highlighting use cases and customer stories over this next year. What’s been your experience with UCS and Cisco Data Center solutions? Please join the conversation.
>> To find out more about Cisco Unified Data Center solutions, go to: www.cisco.com/go/dc
and Cisco Unified Computing Systems at www.cisco.com/go/ucs
>> To find out more about BlueWave, go to: http://www.bluewave-computing.com