Big Data is not just about gathering tons of data, the digital exhaust from the internet, social media, and customer records. The real value is in being able to analyze the data to gain a desired business outcome.
Those of us who follow the Big Data market closely never lack for something new to talk about. There is always a story about how a business is using Big Data in a different way or about some new breakthrough that has been achieved in the expansive big data ecosystem. The good news for all of us is, we have clearly only scratched the surface of the Big Data opportunity!
With the increasing momentum of the Internet of Everything (IoE) market transition, there will be 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020—just five years from now. As billions of new people, processes, and things become connected, each connection will become a source of potentially powerful data to businesses and the public sector. Organizations who can unlock the intelligence in this data can create new sources of competitive advantage, not just from more data but from better access to better data.
What we haven’t heard about – yet—are examples of enterprises that are applying the power of this data pervasively in their organizations: giving them a competitive edge in marketing, supply chain, manufacturing, human resources, customer support, and many more departments. The enterprise that can apply the power of Big Data throughout their organization can create multiple and simultaneous sources of ongoing innovation—each one a constantly renewable or perpetual competitive edge. Looking forward, the companies that can accomplish this will be the ones setting the pace for the competition to follow.
Cisco has been working on making this vision of pervasive use of Big Data within enterprises a reality. We’d like to share this vision with you in an upcoming blog series and executive Webcast entitled, ‘Unlock Your Competitive Edge with Cisco Big Data Solutions’, that will air on October 21st at 9:00 AM PT.
I have the honor of kicking off the multi-part blog series today. Each blog will focus on a specific Cisco solution our customers can utilize to unlock the power of their big data – enterprise-wide-- to deliver a competitive edge to our customers. I’m going to start the discussion by highlighting the infrastructure implications for Big Data in the internet of Everything (IoE) era and focus on Cisco Unified Computing System initially.
Enterprises who want to make strategic use of data throughout their organizations will need to take advantage of the power of all types of data. As IoE increasingly takes root, organizations will be able to access data from virtually anywhere in their value chain. No longer restricted to small sets of structured, historical data, they’ll have more comprehensive and even real-time data including video surveillance information, social media output, and sensor data that allow them to monitor behavior, performance, and preferences. These are just a few examples, but they underscore the fact that not all data is created equally. Real-time data coming in from a sensor may only be valuable for minutes, or even seconds – so it is critical to be able to act on that intelligence as quickly as possible. From an infrastructure standpoint, that means enterprises must be able to connect the computing resource as closely as possible to the many sources and users of data. At the same time, historical data will also continue to be critical to Big Data analytics.
Cisco encourages our customers to take a long-term view—and select a Big Data infrastructure that is distributed, and designed for high scalability, management automation, outstanding performance, low TCO, and the comprehensive, security approach needed for the IoE era. And that infrastructure must be open—because there is tremendous innovation going on in this industry, and enterprises will want to be able to take full advantage of it.
One of the foundational elements of our Big Data infrastructure is the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS). UCS integrated infrastructure uniquely combines server, network and storage access and has recently claimed the #1, x86 blade server market share position in the Americas. It’s this same innovation that propelled us to the leading blade market share position that we are directly applying to Big Data workloads. With its highly efficient infrastructure, UCS lets enterprises manage up to 10,000 UCS servers as if they were a single pool of resources, so they can support the largest data clusters.
Because enterprises will ultimately need to be able to capture intelligence from both data at rest in the data center and data at the edge of the network, Cisco’s broad portfolio of UCS systems gives our customers the flexibility to process data where it makes the most sense. For instance, our UCS 240 rack system has been extremely popular for Hadoop-based Big Data deployments at the data center core. And Cisco’s recently introduced UCS Mini is designed to process data at the edge of the network.
Because the entire UCS portfolio utilizes the same unified architecture, enterprises can choose the right compute configuration for the workload, with the advantage of being able to use the same powerful management and orchestration tools to speed deployment, maximize availability, and significantly lower your operating expenses. Being able to leverage UCS Manager and Service Profiles, Unified Fabric and SingleConnect Technology, our Virtual interface card technology, and industry leading performance really set Cisco apart from our competition.
So, please consider this just an introduction to the first component of Cisco’s “bigger”, big data story. To hear more, please make plans to attend our upcoming webcast entitled, ‘Unlock Your Competitive Edge With Cisco Big Data Solutions’ on October 21st.
Every Tuesday and Thursday from now until October 21st, we’ll post another blog in the series to provide you with additional details of Cisco’s full line of products, solutions and services.
View additional blogs in the series:
9/25: Unlock Big Data with Breakthroughs in Management Automation
9/30: Turbocharging New Hadoop Workloads with Application Centric Infrastructure
10/2: Enable Automated Big Data Workloads with Cisco Tidal Enterprise Scheduler
10/7: To Succeed with Big Data, Enterprises Must Drop an IT-Centric Mindset: Securing IoT Networks Requires New Thinking
10/9: Aligning Solutions to meet our Customers’ Data Challenges
10/14: Analytics for an IoE World
Please let me know if you have any comments or questions, or via Twitter at @CicconeScott.
Tags: ACI, analytics, Big Data, blade server, Blade Servers, Cisco UCS, Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server, Cisco Unified Computing System, Cisco Unified Data Center, Cisco Unified Fabric, Cloudera, data virtualization, Hadoop, Hortonworks, Internet of Everything, IoE, MapR, rack server, security, UCS Central, UCS service profiles
Big Data remains one of the hottest topics in the industry due to the actual dollar value that businesses are deriving from making sense from tons of structured and unstructured data. Virtually every field is leveraging a data-driven strategy as people, process, data and things are increasing being connected (Internet of Everything). New tools and techniques are being developed that can mine vast stores of data to inform decision making in ways that were previously unimagined. The fact that we can derive more knowledge by joining related information and recognizing correlations can inform and enrich numerous aspects of every day life. There’s a good reason why Big Data is so hot!
This year at Hadoop Summit, Cisco invites you to learn how to unlock the value of Big Data. Unprecedented data creation opens the door to responsive applications and emerging analytics techniques and businesses need a better way to analyze data. Cisco will be showcasing Infrastructure Innovations from both Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) and Cisco Applications Centric Infrastructure (ACI). Cisco’s solution for deploying big data applications can help customers make informed decisions, act quickly, and achieve better business outcomes.
Cisco is partnering with leading software providers to offer a comprehensive infrastructure and management solution, based on Cisco UCS, to support our customers’ big data initiatives. Taking advantage of Cisco UCS’s Fabric based infrastructure, Cisco can apply significant advantage to big data workloads.
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Tags: ACI, Big Data, blade server, Blade Servers, Cisco UCS, Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server, Cisco Unified Computing System, Cisco Unified Data Center, Cisco Unified Fabric, Cloudera, Hadoop, Hortonworks, MapR, rack server, UCS Central, UCS service profiles
Huge amounts of information are flooding companies every second, which has led to an increased focus on big data and the ability to capture and analyze this sea of information. Enterprises are turning to big data and Apache Hadoop in order to improve business performance and provide a competitive advantage. But to unlock business value from data quickly, easily and cost-effectively, organizations need to find and deploy a truly reliable Hadoop infrastructure that can perform, scale, and be used safely for mission-critical applications.
As more and more Hadoop projects are being deployed to provide actionable results in real-time or near real-time, low latency has become a key factor that influences a company’s Hadoop distribution choice. Thus, performance and scalability should be evaluated closely before choosing a particular Hadoop solution.
The raw performance of a Hadoop platform is critical; it refers to how quickly the platform can ingest, process and analyze information. The MapR Distribution for Hadoop in particular provides world-record performance for MapReduce operations on Hadoop. Its advanced architecture harnesses distributed metadata with an optimized shuffle process, delivering consistent high performance.
The graph below compares the MapR M7 Edition with another Hadoop distribution, and it vividly illustrates the vast difference in latency and performance between these Hadoop distributions.
One particular solution that is optimized for performance is Cisco UCS with MapR. MapR on the Cisco Unified Computing System™ (Cisco UCS®) is a powerful, production-ready Hadoop solution that increases business and IT agility, supports mission-critical workloads, reduces total cost of ownership (TCO), and delivers exceptional return on investment (ROI) at scale.
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Tags: Big Data, blade server, Blade Servers, Cisco UCS, Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server, Cisco Unified Computing System, Cisco Unified Data Center, Cisco Unified Fabric, Hadoop, MapR, rack server, UCS Central, UCS service profiles
While there is not yet an industry standard benchmark for measuring the performance of Hadoop systems (yes, there is work in progress -- WBDB, BigDataTop100 etc), workloads like TeraSort have become a popular choice to benchmark and stress test Hadoop clusters.
TeraSort is very simple, consists of three map/reduce programs (i) TeraGen -- generates the dataset (ii) TeraSort -- samples and sort the dataset (iii) TeraValidate -- validates the output. With multiple vendors now publishing TeraSort results, organizations can make reasonable performance comparisons while evaluating Hadoop clusters.
We conducted a series of TeraSort tests on our popular Cisco UCS Common Platform Architecture (CPA) for Big Data rack with 16 Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Servers equipped with two Intel Xeon E5-2665 processors, running Apache Hadoop distribution, see figure below, demonstrating industry leading performance and scalability over a range of data set sizes from 100GB to 50TB. For example, out of the box, our 10TB result is 40 percent faster than HP’s published result on 18 HP ProLiant DL380 Servers equipped with two Intel Xeon E5-2667 processors.
While Hadoop offers many advantages for organizations, the Cisco story isn’t complete without including collaborations with our ecosystem partners that enables us to offer complete solution stacks. We support leading Hadoop distributions including Cloudera, HortonWorks, Intel, MapR, and Pivotal on our Cisco UCS Common Platform Architecture (CPA) for Big Data. We just announced our Big Data Design Zone that offers Cisco Validated Designs (CVD) -- pretested and validated architectures that accelerate the time to value for customers while reducing risks and deployment challenges.
Cisco Big Data Design Zone
Cisco UCS Demonstrates Leading TeraSort Benchmark Performance
Cisco UCS Common Platform Architecture (CPA) for Big Data
Tags: Big Data, Big Data Benchmarks, Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server, Cisco UCS CPA, CPA, Hadoop, TeraSort, YCSB
Organizations use Cisco UCS servers to gain the power, flexibility, and management simplicity needed to meet their Microsoft SQL Server workload demands while increasing their IT agility.
Starting with standalone servers for performance and bandwidth, or connecting servers through Cisco UCS for automated configuration, simplified management, and massive I/O flexibility which provide SAN and network-attached storage (NAS) access, the pairing of Microsoft SQL Server with Cisco UCS provides business intelligence and OLTP applications exceptional connectivity to your data.
Let’s not about record-setting performance with lower cost, too! In its inaugural TPC-H™ result, Cisco asserted industry leadership in partnership with Microsoft, establishing Cisco UCS as the fastest 4-socket Intel Xeon processor– powered platform for running Microsoft SQL Server at the 1,000 GB scale factor.
Table 1 below outlines the flexibility of SQL Server on UCS, describing various sized configurations to support your data management needs. Here you can see how our B series or C series UCS servers support small to medium organizations up to the largest of enterprises.
Table 1 -- UCS SQL Server Sample Configurations
Want to learn more about Microsoft applications on Cisco UCS? Then please feel free to download in this new Application Solutions Brochure and see how UCS provides an optimal platform for Microsoft SQL Server, SharePoint and other leading applications.
Tags: applications, Cisco, Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server, Hyper-V, Microsoft, Microsoft SQL Server, UCS, UCS B250 M2