Cloud infrastructure is useless without applications running atop, providing business services and solving customer needs. So, as applications ascend to the throne as the rightful king of cloud, focus sharpens on their support within OpenStack-based Cisco Intercloud. With this focus, let’s walk through a survey of components and projects supporting applications in OpenStack, understanding what a day in the life of an application in OpenStack is like. We’ll start with an overview of the application ecosystem comprised of a number of supporting projects. In the ecosystem overview below, relevant OpenStack projects are presented in context of existing, similar technologies with which you may be familiar. These similar technologies both under and overlap functionality of the respective OpenStack project, but are shown to hasten your general understanding of which bucket these projects fall into by way of tech you may already know (so, add a pinch of salt when considering relevancy of suggested affiliated technologies). Read More »
Posted on behalf of Ramesh Chitor, Cisco Systems and Tom Rose, Unidesk
It’s no secret that desktop virtualization has taken longer than everyone expected. As most enterprises will attest and as Gartner research confirms, the two main culprits are cost and complexity.
Top Issues That Limit VDI Deployments
Source: Is the Hosted Virtual Desktop Market Struggling to Grow?
(Gartner, April 2014, Research ID G00259186)
Yet there are so many good reasons to move forward with VDI – security, compliance, mobility, and the potential for simpler management, to name a few. The demand now is greater than ever for a simple, scalable VDI solution.
Fortunately, innovative new technologies are solving the VDI cost and complexity issues at scale. Also, more importantly, new and exciting partnerships are forming to bring these innovative technologies together into joint solutions. That’s why Cisco and Unidesk are joining forces – to help customers like the ones profiled at the end of this blog achieve desktop virtualization success.
Cisco UCS: The Optimal Infrastructure Foundation for Citrix XenDesktop, VMware Horizon, and Microsoft RDS
According to a recent report by IDC, Cisco has achieved the ranking of No. 1 provider of x86 blade servers in the Americas, measured by revenue market share. How did Cisco demonstrate the highest industry growth in the total worldwide server market when other vendors in the top five posted flat or declining results?
The Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) with a proven and innovative technology delivers breakthrough levels of operational efficiency for cloud service providers and enterprise customers who increasingly rely on scale-out architectures for workloads like VDI. The recent introduction of Cisco UCS Mini brings these same compute scale and performance innovations to remote sites, branch offices, and small IT environments. More on UCS Mini here!
Whether you’re implementing VDI with Citrix XenDesktop, Microsoft RDS, or VMware Horizon, Cisco UCS can reduce infrastructure cost and complexity.
Unidesk: The Single Pane of Glass Management Foundation for Citrix XenDesktop, VMware Horizon, and Microsoft RDS
With a game-changing invention called “layering,” Unidesk has transformed the management of Windows desktops in private clouds. Unidesk virtualizes everything above the hypervisor – Windows OS, Applications, and Personalization – as modular, reusable building blocks, or “layers.” OS and App layers are created once and stored as read-only virtual disks that can be attached to and shared by many VMs. The Personalization layer is a writable virtual disk that is unique to each VM.
IT administrators use Unidesk to assign layers in any combination to create desktops. Unidesk file system and registry virtualization technology merges the assigned layers into a composite C: drive for each VM. Once Unidesk has provisioned the layered desktops on VMware vSphere or Microsoft Hyper-V and added them to Citrix XenDesktop catalogs, Microsoft RDS collections, or VMware Horizon View pools, end users can access the desktops through any device supported by the brokers.
Layering makes desktop provisioning, application delivery, image patching, personalization, disk space reduction, and desktop repair remarkably simple and efficient. All capabilities are delivered through Unidesk’s single pane of glass management console that can be easily mastered by Tier 1 IT administrators.
Unidesk’s single pane of glass console makes everyone on your IT staff application delivery and desktop management experts
Customer Proof Points!
When it comes to VDI, reference architectures and white papers are everywhere. Cisco and Unidesk believe that the best proof points are our joint customer successes:
- Mercer University is one of Americaʼs oldest and most distinctive institutions of higher learning. Cisco UCS, Unidesk, and VMware View are the foundation for the university’s successful “Borderless Classroom” VDI initiative. With more than 1,000 virtual desktops in production, Mercer is realizing its goal of providing a better client computing experience for students, faculty, and staff.Read the case study and watch the customer video.
- Belfast Health and Social Care Trust is one of the largest trusts in the UK. The healthcare organization has deployed over 1,700 virtual desktops with Citrix XenDesktop, Cisco UCS, and Unidesk for 3,000+ workers. The project has been so successful they are now doubling their VDI environment. Read the customer blog.
- Bernstein Shur is one of New England’s largest law firms. Now 100% virtualized with Cisco UCS, Cisco Invicta flash storage, Unidesk, and VMware, the firm’s attorneys are enjoying a more consistent and stable desktop experience as they move between offices, courts, client appointments, and home. Read the case study and watch the customer’s deployment webinar.
- County of Tulare, California is geographically dispersed across 4,863 square miles. When a PC problem arose, IT technicians faced the daunting prospect of spending hours on the road. Due to the wide range of departments and job functions, every desktop configuration is different, making updates and break/fix even more of a challenge. Cisco UCS and Unidesk have VDI on track to solve these problems.Read the case study and watch their deployment webinar.
- USF Health clinicians needed faster, more secure access to Allscripts EMR and other key apps. IT needed to reduce the effort and expense of keeping Windows and apps up to date. With 800 virtual desktops created and managed by Unidesk on Cisco UCS, everyone is getting what they need. WatchUSF Health’s deployment webinar.
How to Get Started
Desktop virtualization shouldn’t be costly or complex.; It shouldn’t require Tier 2 and 3 administrators for day-to-day management. It shouldn’t compromise the end user experience or limit use cases. With Cisco and Unidesk, it won’t.
Get started now. Check out the great resources at www.cisco.com/go/vdi. Download your free trial copy of Unidesk for vSphere at get.unidesk.com/trial. Or, be one of the first to try the new Unidesk for Hyper-V at www.unidesk.com/hyper-v. And see how easy it can be to scale your VDI deployment.
Recently, Cisco’s Rob Lloyd sat down with Sungard AS to discuss how hybrid cloud services are changing the way organizations use the cloud. As the president of development and sales, Rob understands many different sides of the hybrid cloud equation. He talks with businesses about how they want to use the cloud to grow, as well as about their concerns regarding security, cost, and complexity. He works with cloud providers to determine how they want to provide cloud services and what they need to achieve this. He also has intimate access to how the cloud will be implemented at the hardware and software level.
Rob had much to say about hybrid cloud. “It’s not just about one mega data center in Iceland that is going to solve your issues, but rather a purpose-built integration of different clouds that have been provided by value-based providers focused on enterprise-class applications and security.” In this interview, he shares not just Cisco’s Intercloud vision and strategy but how the industry is quickly bringing hybrid cloud to reality. You can read highlights from the interview in this blog from Sungard AS. A link to the full interview is also available.
In addition to the interview with Rob Lloyd, Sungard AS has a number of useful resources to help organizations better understand how cloud can transform their business. For example, the whitepaper, “Building a Better Cloud”, explores what to look for in a cloud provider and how to build a partnership with your provider to meet your business goals. If you’re interested in learning more about hybrid cloud, “The Compelling Business Case for Hybrid Cloud Services” offers key insights on questions you should ask providers before signing with them. You can also find the best practice guide “4 Things to Look for in a Cloud-Based Recovery Solution.”
All these resources and more are available from the Sungard AS Resource Page
The Internet of Everything continues to gain momentum and every new connection is creating new data. Cisco UCS Integrated Infrastructure for Big Data is helping customers convert that data into powerful intelligence, and we’re working with a number of new partners to bring exciting new solutions to our customers.
Today, I want to spotlight Elasticsearch, Inc. and welcome them to the Cisco Solution Partner Program.
Elasticsearch excels at providing real-time insight into data – whether structured or unstructured, human- or machine-generated; by bringing a search-based architecture to data analytics. By combining the ELK stack with Cisco UCS, organizations benefit from a turnkey underlying infrastructure solution that provides them with real-time search and analytics for a variety of applications, from log analysis, to structured, semi-structured, or unstructured searches, as well as a web-backend for custom applications that use search-based analytics as a core functionality.
Mozilla is just one of the companies who are already benefiting from the joint solution with real-time search and analysis of data powering its defense platform, MozDef. The ELK stack leverages Cisco UCS’ fast connectivity for query, indexing and replication of data traffic. And Elasticsearch handles the full scale of event storage, archiving, indexing and searching of the data logs. The ELK stack and Cisco UCS also protect Mozilla’s network, services, systems, and audit data from hackers.
Partners like Elasticsearch are just one reason that Cisco UCS Integrated Infrastructure can help your company capitalize on the IoE data avalanche and deliver powerful and cost-effective analytics solutions throughout your enterprise.
Find out more at www.cisco.com/go/bigdata, or register for a webinar entitled, “Learn How Mozilla Tackles their Security Logs with Elasticsearch and Cisco”.
Thursday, November 13th
9:00 AM PST / 12:00 PM EST / 5:00 PM GMT
Are you interested in learning how to build enterprise applications on top of Elasticsearch and Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS) infrastructure? We’re holding a webinar to delve more deeply into how to optimize ELK on Cisco UCS infrastructure.
Cisco UCS unites compute, network, and storage access into a single cohesive system. By combining the ELK stack with Cisco UCS, businesses benefit by having a turnkey hardware-software solution for their search and analytics applications. In this webinar you’ll learn about the various UCS hardware profiles you should consider when deploying ELK and how Mozilla built MozDef, their custom SIEM application, using ELK on Cisco UCS.
- Introduction – Jobi George, Elasticsearch (5 minutes)
- Overview of UCS + ELK reference architectures – Raghunath Nambiar, Distinguished Engineer, Data Center Business Group, Cisco (10 minutes)
- How Mozilla Built MozDef on ELK and Cisco UCS – Jeff Bryner, Security Assurance, Mozilla (25 minutes)
- Q&A – Jobi George, Elasticsearch (~20 minutes)
In this Season Finale of Engineers Unplugged, Joe Onisick (@jonisick) and Michael Ducy (@mfdii) discuss GoatOps. Yes, you read that right. What is GoatOps? What does this have to do with DevOps? This is all about process and the necessary changes to make Enterprise workflow flow in modern IT. This is a can’t-miss episode!
This is Engineers Unplugged, where technologists talk to each other the way they know best, with a whiteboard. The rules are simple:
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