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A platform for Hadoop as a Service (HaaS): Cisco UCS and OpenStack

As Hadoop is becoming the center of Data Management and OpenStack the platform for private clouds, many organizations have begun to think – When to virtualize Hadoop? – What is the role of OpenStack in Hadoop?
When to virtualize Hadoop? While most of Hadoop deployments in the coming years are expected to be on bare-metal environments there are two main reasons to virtualize Hadoop (i) Offering Hadoop as a Service (HaaS) for their internal (or external) customers by consolidating multiple Hadoop clusters on the same physical cluster to improve infrastructure utilization, and provide access controls and security isolation between tenants (ii) Running both production (with a stable version of the software stack) and test (experimenting using beta or latest versions of software stacks) environments at the same scale, using a single underlying infrastructure platform. Since workloads that work well with smaller datasets on smaller clusters can often fail as you scale up to larger clusters (for various reasons), customers may find a collocated approach (using virtualization to logically separate production and test environments) to achieve more predictable results.
What is the role of OpenStack in Hadoop ? OpenStack brings the operating system for clouds of all types of clouds, whether public, private, or hybrid.  It enables self-service provisioning, elastic scaling and support for multi-tenancy – all critical for enabling Hadoop as a Service (HaaS).
While Hadoop and OpenStack are attractive from the standpoint of their respective innovations, deploying enterprise class solutions with such new technologies can be very challenging.
Today, we are announcing the availability of Cisco Validated Design for HaaS with Cisco UCS Common Platform Architecture (CPA v2) for Big Data. The solution uses Hortonworks Data Platform and Canonical OpenStack Platform on Cisco UCS CPA v2 for Big Data. The objective of the CVD is to provide step by step instructions that help ensure fast, reliable, and predictable deployments should a customer decide that the time is right to virtualize Hadoop.

Additional Information
Cisco Big Data Design Zone
CVD for HaaS with Cisco UCS CPA v2 for Big Data, html, pdf

Rocky Mountains High On Data Virtualization

I recently returned from my seventh annual Boulder BI Brain Trust presentation. The BBBT as everyone likes to call it, is unique in the business intelligence, data and analytics industry.

Since 2006, the BBBT has advanced this industry by organizing half-day vendor presentations to their over 140 members.  During these presentations, vendors such as the Cisco’s Data and Analytics organization, update BBBT members on new strategies, evolving technologies, customer adoption and more.  In return the vendors get valuable feedback from the BBBT’s global network of analysts, consultants and academics.

Cisco’s Expanded Data and Analytics Portfolio

Mike Flannagan, General Manager of Cisco’s Data and Analytics Business Group, led off this year by identifying four key trends creating new business opportunities for our customers, as well as disrupting their traditional data management approaches.

  1. Increased speed of business and rising customer expectations
  2. Data is the new competitive battlefield
  3. Data is increasingly distributed
  4. Data at the edge volumes are extreme

Mike then discussed the coming together of Cisco’s data and analytics portfolio over the past year in order to comprehensively address these trends. These solutions include:

  • Cisco Data Virtualization, added to the portfolio a year ago when Cisco acquired Composite Software.
  • Cisco Prime Analytics, the former Truviso products.
  • Cisco Data In Motion, from the TigerMe acquisition.
  • Cisco Connected Analytics, a set of packaged analytics applications targeted for specific market segments including retail, healthcare, service provider, city infrastructure, call center, and more.

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Billions of Devices Generating Even Bigger Data

Following Mike, Jim Green, CTO for Mike’s group, discussed the data and analytic implications that will result as 30 billion additional devices connect over the network within then next five years.

The business outcome and analytics opportunities from these devices are endless.  However the data volumes generated will make even today’s big data seem small. And how all these come together in an already complex data landscape is an Internet of Everything challenge everyone will soon face.

Data Virtualization Advances

Kevin Ott, General Manager of the Data Virtualization Business Unit, and I closed out this year’s BBBT with updates on data virtualization market dynamics, customer adoption trends and our product strategy for maintaining product leadership in this increasingly important foundation technology.  Join us at Data Virtualization Day on October 1, 2014, in New York City where Cisco, our customers and prominent analysts will share more on these topics.  Sign up soon as space is limited. #DVDNYC

Gain a BBBT Insider’s View

Check out these three sources to gain an insider’s view on Cisco’s BBBT presentation:

  • Listen to Mike Flannagan and Jim Green’s podcast with BBBT co-founder Claudia Imhoff.
  • Read acknowledged data warehousing pioneer and BBBT member, Barry Devlin’s blog.
  • Review over 100 tweets from BBBT members by filtering on #BBBT.

Learn More

To learn more about Cisco Data Virtualization, check out our page

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Follow us @CiscoDataVirt.

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Punch the Data Center Accelerator and Maintain Full Control

Every organization needs more from their data centers, such as faster services and data analysis for real-time decision making.  The unprecedented expansion of data is a major driver of rapid data center transformation.  Consider these statistics:

  • 90% of all data in the world was created in the last three years
  • Data centers handled 214 exabytes of data per month in 2012 and that is expected to grow to 644 exabytes per month by 2017

Just trying to image 214 exabytes of data is like trying to imagine how much money a trillion is.  Bottom line:  it is a lot of data!

Given that upward of 70% of what data centers do today is still about processing data, and IT budgets are at best flat, organizations have to become more efficient.  They need newer, better ways to process data and deliver data center services, increase application performance and increase operational efficiency.

Cisco understands this problem.  The combination of Cisco UCS Director and UCS Invicta allows your organization to deliver services faster, increase application performance and deliver those operational efficiencies everyone is seeking.   We created a nice video illustration to explain:

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Analytics: A New Model for Creating Great, Personalized Customer Experiences

While certainly exciting, buying a new house, can also serve as a revealing exercise in understanding data science.

A couple of weeks ago I went to my bank to investigate my financial options for buying a new house. To my surprise, my account manager gave me a stack of paperwork to fill out—and I soon realized that my bank was already in possession of 90 percent of the information I was being asked to provide. So why was I having to take the time to fill in information the bank already had, or could easily acquire?  And more importantly, why couldn’t my account manager quickly access information about my client status and my personal preferences, and immediately provide a tailored offering, decreasing the chance that I would look elsewhere for this service?

Figure 1. Centralized, Decentralized, and Distributed Networks. A distributed, virtualized approach to database management enables quick combination and analysis of large volumes of data—where and when it is needed.

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Source: Paul Baran, Rand Corporation.

I wrote in one of my recent blogs about the issues and solutions related to quickly combining data that comes in large volumes by focusing on data virtualization and cloud. This can enable seamless customer interactions and decrease client churn, be it in financial services or in the telecom sector. But what is required at an organizational level so that people, process, data, and things come together to enable a superior customer experience and create entirely new revenue possibilities?

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#EngineersUnplugged S6|Ep3: Cisco Virtual Application Container Services

August 6, 2014 at 3:28 pm PST

In this week’s lightning episode of Engineers Unplugged, Nisarg Shah and Eric Charlesworth introduce a new product, Cisco Virtual Application Container Services. What does this mean? Watch and see.

If you would like to become Internet Famous, and strut your unicorn talents, join us for our next filming session at VMworld 2014. Tweet me for details!

This is Engineers Unplugged, where technologists talk to each other the way they know best, with a whiteboard. The rules are simple:

  1. Episodes will publish weekly (or as close to it as we can manage)
  2. Subscribe to the podcast here: engineersunplugged.com
  3. Follow the #engineersunplugged conversation on Twitter
  4. Submit ideas for episodes or volunteer to appear by Tweeting to @CommsNinja
  5. Practice drawing unicorns

Join the behind the scenes by liking Engineers Unplugged on Facebook.

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