Cisco Blogs


Cisco Blog > Data Center and Cloud

Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System: Complexity and Cost Comparison

Complexity and Cost Comparison: Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System is report recently published by Principled Technologies.

They evaluated both the technologies and costs of each solution and found a UCS solution is both less expensive to deploy and less complex to manage than an IBM Flex System.

Off all the ways Principled Technologies shows how UCS is a superior solution, I wanted to touch on just one: highly available and scalable management. A UCS management domain consists of a pair of Fabric Interconnects and supports up to 160 blade and/or rack servers. In contrast, IBM is limited to 54 blade servers plus a non-redundant Flex System Manager node. Quoting from the paper:

Because IBM Flex System Manager nodes do not failover automatically like the Cisco UCS solution, administrators must manually connect to a backup node and bring it online. Each target system has an OS agent that remains registered to the original FSM node and does not recognize the new FSM. Admins must manually unregister each of these agents from the failed node and then register the new FSM node. [page 7]

Read the full report to learn the many additional ways which UCS is shown to be superior solution and why Cisco has leapt ahead of IBM and is now the #2 blade server vendor worldwide1

Principled Technologies Complexity and Cost Comparison Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System from Cisco Data Center

 

Would like to learn more about how Cisco is changing the economics of the datacenter, I would encourage you to review this presentation on SlideShare  or my previous series of blog posts, Yes, Cisco UCS servers are that good.

  1. Source:  IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker, Q1 2013 Revenue Share, May 2013

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Real world ROI results with UCS servers – a detailed study at Loughborough University

I recently worked with Loughborough University on a financial impact study of their initial deployment of Cisco UCS. The study documents their findings of a dramatic improvement in IT efficiency, bearing out the advantages that attracted them to the UCS solution. Loughborough’s Customer Case Study has been revised with the results of this TCO study as well new details on the next stage of their deployment of Cisco Virtual Experience Infrastructure (VXI) Smart Solution.

We examined Loughborough’s projected growth rates and compared the continuation of their previous rack server environment against a UCS solution combined with an expansion of their virtualized environment. Server consolidation and reduced administrator workload contributed to exceptional results: a total savings of US$878,789 (40% OpEx and 60% CapEx) with a 225% ROI and 22% IRR. Compared to the previous environment, Loughborough’s UCS deployment will drive down cost in several key areas over the coming five years:

  • server hardware – 38%
  • switching infrastructure and cabling – 80%
  • power and cooling – 49%
  • new server provisioning – 79%
  • virtualization software – 39%

“When we compared the legacy server and network with one based on Cisco UCS, TCO effectively halves over a five-year investment lifecycle.”

Dr. Phil Richards, Director of IT, Loughborough University.

As a result of Cisco’s Unified Fabric approach, the study shows that Loughborough will need only six switches (three redundant pairs) to support their end state vs. 30 in their legacy environment and a corresponding reduction in cables from 646 to just 44.

These results are typical to what other customers achieve when they switch to UCS. See my first blog post, Yes, Cisco UCS servers are that good.

Would you like to learn more about how Cisco UCS can help you? There are more than 250 published datacenter case studies on Cisco.com. Additionally, there is a TCO/ROI tool that will allow you to compare your existing environment to a new UCS Solution. For a more in-depth TCO/ROI analysis, contact your Cisco partner.

Loughborough University TCO Study Waterfall

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Cisco Customers can now manage energy consumption of IP connected devices at no charge with Cisco EnergyWise Fast-Start $0 SKUs

Be it tax-credits/subsidies in different parts of the world or the recent news of California setting up a carbon trading exchange – no week passes by without the mention of “the importance of saving energy” or “reducing greenhouse gases”. Yet, with the explosion of technology and IP-connected devices; IT consumes over 25% of energy in a commercial building or office.

So why am I writing about this in a Cisco blog and what has this got to do with networking?

Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Creative Financing for Broadband Infrastructure

By Howard Baldwin, Contributing Columnist

One of the challenging issues about deploying broadband – so they say – is the cost. Access rights. Construction. Lawsuits. All have an effect on time and resources. That’s why it was particularly startling when I started finding references to communities that had found ways to deploy broadband using creative financing and cost structures.

For instance, as noted in Laying Fiber: Creative Broadband Installations, the city of Santa Monica used federal stimulus funds and then partnered with other telecommunications companies. As Broadband Communities’ article Santa Monica City Net: How to Grow a Network notes, the city leased a fiber network from a local cable TV operator.

Read More »

Tags: , , , , , ,

A World of Many Clouds

Imagine a world where businesses can increase efficiency, reduce costs, and securely share and store data across multiple networks, regardless of location. Until a few years ago, this concept seemed unattainable to most.

Fast-forward to 2012, and just about every company in the industry is working to make the cloud a part of its business model. Organizations are beginning to see the cloud as a long-term industry transition in the same way that client/server computing was a transition from the mainframe era.

Cloud is the next step in the evolution of the Internet. And that evolution is happening now. The cloud is fundamentally changing the way people and businesses consume services.

Early discussions have focused primarily on the different types of clouds leaving businesses wondering what option is best for them. In reality, it can take several types of clouds to solve a variety of business challenges. We’re moving to an interconnected world of many clouds – where users want to experience cloud services anywhere, anytime, on any device – and businesses want IT as a service.

Clouds offer compelling economics – reducing CapEx and OpEx, sharing of cloud assets, and dynamic, on-demand delivery of services. They enable flexible business models that allow services to be launched more rapidly, with greater efficiency and more scalability, regardless of the geography or size of business.

Curious on what “cloud formation” is right for you? Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , ,