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Let Cisco Cloud Work for Your Business

At a recent event I saw a T-shirt that said “Remember when cloud only meant rain?”  In the days before cloud computing, asking someone what they thought about cloud usually invoked a response about an animal-shaped formation or looking at cumulonimbus and predicting precipitation. One thing that today’s IT clouds have in common with their heavenly-based brethren is the ability for IT clouds to make it rain for your business.  When cloud is a part of your business strategy, they can increase business agility and effectiveness that translate into revenue generating opportunities.

Every day customers tell me what keeps them up at night is not how to reduce costs but how to survive. Cloud can take you far beyond survival to thriving  by delivering everything from data center services to applications to even office supplies.  But to get this benefit you need to bring together IT and your business strategy. And you need a new way of managing all these components in a unified manner.

Traditional management strategies and solutions utilize fragmented tools dedicated to specific systems.  They are ineffective in an environment where end users are empowered to request services on-the-fly and expect delivery almost instantly.

A customer told me this week that he believed all cloud management solutions were the same.    This is simply not true and two new reports from EMA and IDC provide supporting evidence.

Cisco’s cloud solution understands that your journey is a multi-step process.  You need to first automate your physical and virtual infrastructure to provide a foundational base for as-a-service, across heterogeneous hardware.  Let’s be honest – how can you increase efficiency when your solution manages a single hardware stack or hypervisor?

Cisco UCS Director delivers unified management and automation across both physical and virtual environments from a single pane of glass.   Designed to manage integrated and converged infrastructures utilizing Cisco UCS and Nexus fabric, UCS Director also manages third-party infrastructures such as HP, Dell and Brocade. Its innovative model-based orchestration tracks configuration changes ensuring that your business workflows run to completion, even if a switch is down or unavailable. UCS Director frees up your IT engineers from mundane daily management tasks allowing them to focus on more advanced projects.

Once infrastructure is automated, you can expand your horizons to automating the delivery of applications or general business processes.   Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud (IAC) is a full-stack cloud solution that includes embedded application provisioning, governance and usage tracking all from an end-user portal and service catalog that spans multiple cloud platforms and tenants.   Leveraging its networking strength, Cisco IAC simplifies  cloud-based deployment and management of network services with out-of-box templates for firewalls, load balancers and VPNs eliminating the need for manual, trouble-ticket based provisioning.   

Watch these videos to learn more about Cisco UCS Director and Cisco IAC.

Earlier this week, Cisco announced its open, hybrid cloud solution, Cisco Intercloud.  Cisco IAC is one of the management solutions powering this offering and is an example of Cisco IAC’s flexible cloud service capabilities – flexibility that your company needs.

With cloud becoming strategic to your organization’s IT strategy, Cisco’s two step solution of Cisco UCS Director and Cisco IAC gets you on the path to anything-as-a-service and your organization on its way to experiencing those rain making opportunities.    

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Cisco Global Intercloud: Connecting You to Innovation

These are exciting times at Cisco as we continue our journey with you in  the world of many clouds. You may have read Rob Lloyd’s announcement about the expansion of Cisco’s Cloud strategy, and may wonder: do I really care?

I’m here to tell you yes, you should, and here’s why: Cisco is doing what we do best – combining our leading edge technology, global reach and strength of our partnerships to provide our customers with cloud services built for high performance workloads, ensuring they are scalable, reliable and secure.

What makes Cisco global Intercloud unique is we have designed it from the ground up specifically for the Internet of Everything economy. Built on truly open standards, it used a distributed network architecture that provides intelligence at the edge to ensure the best possible application performance and data analysis.

Embedded with support for rich collaboration capabilities (like streaming video), add our partnerships and global build-out, and you get a level of data sovereignty, privacy and security that has simply not been available until now.

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Introducing Cisco’s Global Intercloud

In 2011, Cisco’s Chief Information Officer Rebecca Jacoby established CITEIS, a ‘private cloud’ designed to more quickly, more flexibly and more cost-effectively give our employees the I.T. resources they need to do their jobs. CITEIS has reduced the time it takes to provision compute, storage and networking from 6-8 weeks to 15 minutes, and by virtualizing more than 92% of our data center environment, we’ve also reduced the TCO of our I.T. environment by more than 66%.

Those are impressive results, and Rebecca is a world-class CIO, but even her organization isn’t attempting to unilaterally keep up with the pace of change – with cloud scale, with global reach, with rapid business service delivery, or with the analytics capability required to derive value from the Internet of Everything.

No one organization can.

Like many of our customers, Rebecca has embraced a hybrid IT model. Cisco increasingly relies on a combination of private cloud and public cloud services. Aggregating, integrating, customizing and securely delivering services based on hundreds of applications from dozens of vendors in public and private clouds has become a critical part of Rebecca’s  role.

And this is the reality faced by CIOs all over the world today.  In order to move with speed, scale, global reach and world class economics, they all recognize that ‘hybrid cloud’ strategies must be embraced.

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The Rise of the Intercloud

For a number of years Intercloud has been a term known only in the academic world and amongst few industry experts.
The Intercloud is a “cloud of clouds” and the Wikipedia description perfectly outlines the reason why Intercloud is the critical enabler to capture the immense value of the Internet of Everything-
The Intercloud scenario is based on the key concept that each single cloud does not have infinite physical resources or ubiquitous geographic footprint.”

That’s exactly the point!
It’s not about one cloud, no matter how large, but it’s about how to distribute the capacity and the intelligence to deal with connecting billions of things and trillions of events.
And when it comes to people, processes and data that – along with things – form the Internet of Everything, new Data Sovereignty requirements make the goal of building one cloud to address all those requirements virtually impossible…until today!

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Cisco and our Intercloud Provider Partners will turn the “impossible” into our second phase of our World of Many Clouds strategy as we state our intent to become the number 1 Platform for the Internet of Everything.

Just think about those disparate LAN protocols, mail systems, SNA networks, etc. that Cisco multiprotocol IP Routers interconnected via IP and the global Internet in the last decades.

Now think about today’s cloud world with private and public clouds, based on disparate hypervisors, various software stacks, different security frameworks, different policies, geographical locations, etc.

Don’t you see the same pattern? Much like Cisco was a key player in building the global Internet, we are now at the heart of building the global Intercloud!

Announcing Cisco Cloud Services

Today, at Cisco Partner Summit in Las Vegas, we announced a major evolution of our World of Many Clouds strategy – Cisco Cloud Services – with plans to build the world’s largest global Intercloud together with key strategic partners and service providers. This first-of-its kind global open public network of clouds and represents the next phase in cloud computing.  This will be a cloud truly built for the Internet of Everything, capable of scaling to billions of connections, and trillions of events, offering customers unmatched flexibility to integrate their private, public, and hybrid cloud capabilities to achieve business advantage.

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Cisco InterCloud Differentiators

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Cisco Cloud Services Opens New Opportunities for Partners

The market is moving fast and the pace of change is dramatic. The days of partners launching new services into the market every 6-12 months are gone. Customers are expecting new applications almost daily that will allow them to deliver innovation, increase top line revenue and accelerate productivity across their company.

As the supply of cloud services grows we see the need for our partners to tap into a diverse set of public clouds around the world to enable unmatched data sovereignty, and we see more opportunities for them to work together around common standards of workload interoperability, global portability and security. However until today, there has never been the right platform to allow partners to harness the world of many clouds on behalf of their customers. Cisco today announced plans to build a global intercloud – a network of clouds – together with a set of partners.  Called Cisco Cloud Services, this new intercloud opens up a myriad of new opportunities for partners.

Cisco is expanding the Cisco Powered program to include Cisco Cloud Services. Cisco will sell these new services through channel partners and directly to end customers. Partners who develop Cisco Powered services can extend their portfolio through new Cisco cloud offers for faster time to market and global scale. Read More »

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