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Every cloud needs a net

Most enterprises have been exploring cloud computing to see how it might work for them.  Cloud computing offers the ability to run servers on the Internet on demand.  The storage, compute, and network functions are positioned and ready for use, so servers can be deployed within minutes, and paid for only for as long as they are in use.

An essential component of any cloud installation is its network.   When servers are deployed in a cloud, they need an external network to be usable.  The network services that they need are more than simple IP connectivity, and each customer of the cloud will need some customization.  Here are some key types of cloud network service.

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Virtual Computing Environment coalition -Can you list the benefits for your company ?

You probably didn’t miss the today announcement of the coalition  between Cisco, EMC and VMware designed to address the challenges of pervasive virtualization and private cloud computing .We met Mark Fulgham , Vice-President Data Center Solutions to get his point of view on the Virtual Computing Environment coalition , on the Vblock Infrastructure Packages approach .In this short extract , Mark Fulgham describes some of the benefits he sees for our customers. 


We also invite two customers, a CIO and a CTO to share their analysis of the Vblock Infrastructure Packages approach  

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Wishful Thinking: The Innovation Edition

I am an unabashed fan of social networking.  For the data center team, being able to get direct, unfiltered feedback from the market has been a boon for making sure we are tracking in the right direction.  I also thoroughly enjoy the online conversations on the various blogs and in Twitter.  There are a great number of people out there with a lot of good thinking on the data center and I highly encourage you to do a little googling to get plugged into these conversations.  There are folks out there with views diametrically opposed to mine (you know who you are) but they have well-reasoned, well-spoken opinions and you can’t help but respect them for that–and I honestly enjoy the back-and-forth.


And then I’ll come across something that will leave me scratching my head thinking “Really…that’s the best you could come up with?”  I was reminded about this when I recently ran across a diatribe on our “lack of innovation”.  So, as a company, I will readily admit that there are a number of things we need to work on (and are), but “lack of innovation”? Really?


Let’s deconstruct this a little bit.  Just for the sake of argument, let’s start with a definition.  My trusty Mac dictionary defines “innovate” as “make changes in something established, esp. by introducing new methods, ideas, or products,” so lets run with that.  So, what have we done along these lines in the data center space in the last 20 months or so (not meaning to brag, just trying to make a point): 


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Could the Converged Network Adapter be the most important element in a Unified Fabric?

Many vendors are touting the benefits of IEEE DCB, FCoE, CEE, DCE, Unified Fabrics, and many other marketing monikers for equipment consolidation.  Each component of the technology is interesting, but maybe no more so than the Converged Network Adapter itself.   Why so?  Let’s take a look.

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Cisco Nexus 4001I Switch Module for IBM BladeCenter

On my previous blog post “What exactly is a Nexus 4000?” there were many questions/comments around OEM blade server vendors and details of Nexus 4000 Series Blade Switches . Today, IBM announced the details of the Cisco Nexus 4000 blade switch for their BladeCenter H and HT chassis.

Nexus 4001 Switch Module for IBM BladeCenter will provide the support for Fiber Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) and the emerging IEEE Data Center Bridging (DCB) standards over 10 GbE for IBM Blade servers.

So IBM becomes the first blade server vendor to make Cisco Nexus 4000 available for their blade servers. You can find the Nexus 4000 blade switch IBM description at:

and included in the IBM websites below:

and on the Cisco website:

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