Built up on our vision of shared infrastructure and unified management for enterprise applications, the Cisco UCS Common Platform Architecture (CPA) for Big Data has become a popular choice for enterprise Big Data deployments. It has been widely adopted in finance, healthcare, service provider, entertainment, insurance, and public sectors. The new Cisco UCS CPA V2 improves both performance and capacity featuring Intel Xeon E5-2600 v2 family of processors, industry leading storage density, and industry’s first transparent cache acceleration for Big Data.
The Cisco UCS CPA v2 offers a choice of infrastructure options, including “Performance Optimized”, “Balanced”, “Capacity Optimized”, and “Capacity Optimized with Flash” to support a range of workload needs.
Up to 160 servers (3200 cores, 7.6PB storage) are supported in single switching/UCS domain. Scaling beyond 160 servers can be implemented by interconnecting multiple UCS domains using Nexus 6000/7000 Series switches, scalable to thousands of servers and to hundreds of petabytes storage, and managed from a single pane using UCS Central in a data center or distributed globally.
The Cisco UCS CPA v2 solutions are available through Cisco UCS Solution Accelerator Paks program designed for rapid deployments, tested and validated for performance, and optimized for cost of ownership: Performance Optimized half-rack (UCS-SL-CPA2-P) ideal for MPP databases and scale-out data analytics, Performance and Capacity Balanced rack (UCS-SL-CPA2-PC) ideal for high performance Hadooop and NoSQL deployments, Capacity Optimized rack (UCS-SL-CPA2-C) when capacity matters, and Capacity Optimized with Flash rack (UCS-SL-CPA2-CF) offers industry’s first transparent caching option for Hadoop and NoSQL. Start with any configuration and scale as your workload demands.
Cisco supports leading Hadoop and NoSQL distributions, including Cloudera, HortonWorks, Intel, MapR, Oracle, Pivotal and others. For more information visit Cisco Big Data Portal, and Big Data Design Zone that offers Cisco Validated Designs (CVD) -- pretested and validated architectures that accelerate the time to value for customers while reducing risks and deployment challenges.
I was at the recent Gartner Symposium in Orlando and the topic of industrialization of IT services came up in some sessions presented by Gartner analyst, William Maurer. This is a timely and interesting topic given that the Centennial celebrations of the Ford moving assembly line were held earlier this month. It was a hundred years ago on Oct 7 that Ford’s Highland Park Plant began using the first moving assembly line. The goal was to produce the Model T at scale, and at a price people could afford. Henry Ford found the inspiration in the “dis-assembly lines” of the slaughterhouses of Chicago and Cincinnati. Beef carcasses hung from conveyor belts and workers along the way were assigned to slice off a specific cut of meat. Ford managers turned it around by starting with a basic Model T frame, and adding specific parts to it on a moving conveyor belt with stations where workers assembled a single piece of the vehicle, over and over again. The end result was a mass produced car with economies of scale that a large group of the population could afford.
Courtesy – Ford Motor Corporation
A recent NPR interview questioned how the assembly line impacted the lives of workers when it debuted. The response indicated a fundamental shift in the skills needed. Prior to the assembly line, workers were craftsmen. Workers were there for their brawn and their speed. Since these were tough working conditions, the average wages went up. So what has changed in the last hundred years? According to the program -- “Workers today are hired as much for their brainpower as they are for their brawn, because they have to be a participant in the quality process.”
In this information age what should we expect with Industrialization of IT? We certainly should not see debacles such as the US government Read More »
Organizations are rethinking the realm of possibility that exists with the vast amount of data they gather and store with each IT transaction. The value of this data can unleash and unlock priceless opportunities for your business. Together with Intel, Cisco has released a special edition of Unleashing IT which focuses specifically on Big Data and the benefits therein.
Maximizing the value that exists in your data sets requires openly embracing change and considering new tools and technologies that enable better product and service delivery. And doing so can help identify new business opportunities representing tens of millions of dollars of incremental revenue.
This special edition of Unleashing IT is all about Big Data. As every industry expert knows, there is nothing simple or linear about your data stores. To learn how to start digging, avoid pitfalls, and maximize the value in your data sets, check out our new edition, containing expert advice, thought leadership, and industry insight.
Recently, the conversations I have been having about Software Defined Networks have shifted from supplying agile networking for VM provisioning and live migrations to looking at the problem through the lens of the application team. In the past, I spoke about provisioning VMs and moving VMs as a surrogate for the application. An application and a VM are not always in a one-to-one ratio. This is a convenient simplification for everyone except perhaps the IT operations teams provisioning multi-server, tiered, or distributed server applications.
In this blog post, I want to complement Gary Kinghorn’s blog, The Promise of an Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI), to briefly share insights from talking with many IT operations managers and architects responsible for traditional enterprise applications as well the new distributed applications for cloud infrastructure. What they are saying has profound implications for cloud infrastructure.
Conventional IT organizations have dedicated teams managing their applications, compute, network, security, and storage infrastructure. These functional organizations must work together much like runners in a relay race to manage the lifecycle of the applications used by an enterprise. These runners need to be agile but the racecourses are not the same every race.
When you look at some categories of applications side by side, the implications on business agility – the speed that a business can execute on a strategy (esp. one dependent on IT) – and the requirements on applications, network and security teams become apparent.
Productivity applications like Microsoft Exchange and Web 2.0 applications like SharePoint for collaboration support lots of client -- server traffic (this is North – South traffic) for the hundreds or thousands of end users of these applications within the enterprise. Characteristic of these server deployments as they scale up users, the load is balanced across the edge servers using server load balancers or applications delivery controllers. Additionally, since these applications are highly exposed to threats from the external network, these applications have priority requirements for security devices to prevent Denial of Service attacks and deliver secure access.
To scale I/O intensive applications such as SQL Server databases, IT organizations use clustered data base servers to handle the transactions or queries with deterministic network performance between servers and storage arrays which can be measured by latency and assured bandwidth.
New distributed cloud and big data applications like Hadoop can employ tens or hundreds of servers with unique I/O patterns between servers and terabytes of collected data which require guaranteed I/O characteristics for optimal performance between servers, local data, and the big data repositories. The traffic patterns are between servers and shared storage within the data center and are often characterized as heavy East-West data center traffic patterns.
Every installation has its unique fingerprint of application requirements but the chart below is useful to provide a comparison and contrast of the requirements for these categories of applications.
Source: Cisco interviews with leading IT DevOps administrators, 2013
IT organizations that want to work faster need to define applications requirements according to these major dimensions and learn to accelerate the workflow of application deployment across pooled network, security, compute and storage infrastructure.
Last June, Cisco revealed its vision for Application Centric Infrastructure, an innovative secure architecture that delivers centralized application driven policy automation, management and visibility for physical and virtual networks from a single point of management. It provides a common programmable automation and management framework for the network, application, security, services, compute, and operations teams, making IT more agile while reducing application deployment time.
I’m happy to report that Cisco UCS Director (formerly Cloupia) has been selected as a finalist for the 2013 Storage, Virtualisation & Cloud (SVC) Awards! Please take a moment and vote for UCS Director at http://cs.co/SVCAward.
This finalist nomination recognizes the innovation and differentiation that Cisco UCS Director provides for end-to-end converged infrastructure management — including automation for both virtual and physical resources across compute, network, and storage.
The video below provides a good overview of Cisco UCS Director and its benefits for IT organizations:
The sweet spot for Cisco UCS Director is in managing converged infrastructure based on Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS) with Cisco Nexus switches and third party storage — focusing on our market-leading integrated systems including the FlexPod solution with NetApp, as well as VCE’s Vblock Systems and our VSPEX solutions with EMC storage.
But the beauty of Cisco UCS Director is that it can also manage heterogeneous environments, including non-Cisco infrastructure and multiple hypervisors. Whether you call it your single-pane-of-glass or one ring to rule them all, it’s a highly innovative and comprehensive infrastructure management solution for your data center operations. These capabilities and more are highlighted in the award nomination which you can read here.