I was at the recent Gartner Symposium in Orlando and the topic of industrialization of IT services came up in some sessions presented by Gartner analyst, William Maurer. This is a timely and interesting topic given that the Centennial celebrations of the Ford moving assembly line were held earlier this month. It was a hundred years ago on Oct 7 that Ford’s Highland Park Plant began using the first moving assembly line. The goal was to produce the Model T at scale, and at a price people could afford. Henry Ford found the inspiration in the “dis-assembly lines” of the slaughterhouses of Chicago and Cincinnati. Beef carcasses hung from conveyor belts and workers along the way were assigned to slice off a specific cut of meat. Ford managers turned it around by starting with a basic Model T frame, and adding specific parts to it on a moving conveyor belt with stations where workers assembled a single piece of the vehicle, over and over again. The end result was a mass produced car with economies of scale that a large group of the population could afford.
Courtesy – Ford Motor Corporation
A recent NPR interview questioned how the assembly line impacted the lives of workers when it debuted. The response indicated a fundamental shift in the skills needed. Prior to the assembly line, workers were craftsmen. Workers were there for their brawn and their speed. Since these were tough working conditions, the average wages went up. So what has changed in the last hundred years? According to the program -- “Workers today are hired as much for their brainpower as they are for their brawn, because they have to be a participant in the quality process.”
In this information age what should we expect with Industrialization of IT? We certainly should not see debacles such as the US government Read More »
Tags: Cisco UCS Manager, orchestration, system management, UCS Monitoring
I am often asked by customers why UCS has been so successful in such a short amount of time. My response is always the same in that it comes down to two things – 1) Cisco and our partners’ ability to understand and execute against customer needs and 2) A fundamental difference in the underlying architecture.
You may know that Cisco invented UCS service profiles and built the entire system around the notion of hardware state abstraction. Cisco’s approach has been so successful because every element of the system was designed from the beginning to have its configuration set through software, without any licensing requirements. Whether customers are running bare-metal, virtualized, or any combination therein, Cisco UCS service profiles have revolutionized computing and have challenged competitors to try and replicate the simplicity and increased productivity that UCS Manager policies and templates provide. It’s no secret that Cisco UCS Manager has revolutionized the way customers deploy and manage servers, but here are a few things about UCS Manager that you may not be aware of.
Did you know that Cisco UCS Manager is embedded software running within the Fabric Interconnects in a highly available clustered configuration? This is an important distinction from traditional architectures as Cisco UCS Manager is a fully redundant management engine right out of the box the moment the system receives power, without special clustering software or additional licensing fees. Read More »
Tags: blades, Cisco UCS, Cisco UCS Manager, Cisco Unified Fabric, Dell Active System Manager, Dell ASM, HP, HP blade management, HP c-class bladesystem, HP OneView, IBM, IBM Flex System, IBM Flex System Manager, IBM FSM, service profile, UCS Manager
The number of mobile devices in our companies are exploding -- and one of the fastest and best ways to deliver all those existing Windows-based apps to these devices is using app virtualization. At the same time many of you are probably thinking about upgrading and expanding your Citrix XenApp deployment to Citrix XA 6.5 or XD 7 in any case.
But can your Citrix XenApp infrastructure support this upgrade and all these new users? When customers started asking us these questions we decided we needed to check it out. So we asked Principled Technologies to look at helping us test out how well our Cisco UCS architecture with Cisco UCS VM-FEX would cope with these stresses.
Here’s want they found….
- With Cisco UCS VM-FEX 29% more responsive Citrix XenApp sessions can be obtained
- Under extreme network loads, Cisco UCS VM-FEX enabled Virtual Machine (VM), provided up to 53% more CPU resource optimization, than is possible with a traditional vSwitch
Read More »
Tags: application virtualization, Cisco UCS Manager, Cisco UCS VIC, Citrix XenApp, Login VSI, UCS VM-FEX
Guest Blog: Jacob Van Ewyk,
Product Manager – Cisco UCS Manager and Cisco UCS Central
One of the great benefits of the Cisco UCS solution is that it includes the management layer -- Cisco UCS Manager - as part of the Fabric Interconnects This ensures that any UCS server connected to a Fabric Interconnect has embedded management of all software and hardware components in that domain. While this is a great solution for many customers, we recognize that some customers want multiple domains, whether for scale, redundancy, multiple locations, or a host of other reasons. While Cisco UCS Manager has an XML API that can help manage multiple domains, Cisco also offers UCS Central to help solve this challenge.
Cisco UCS Central runs as a virtual machine and centralizes many features across multiple domains -- whether local or remote domains. The first release of UCS Central, version 1.0, was released in November 2012 and provided value to customers with central fault management, ID pool management, and global operational polices. However, I am proud to announce that Cisco has released UCS Central 1.1, the follow up release that brings key functionality such as service profiles and templates, policies, statistics, and more. This release is a major step forward in providing a complete, centralized offering that provides the full capabilities of UCS Manager, but across a multi-domain environment.
How does UCS Central 1.1 make your life easier? Here are several good use cases to illustrate the value of UCS Central.
|Bring up an additional domain
||Additional domains can pull access service profiles and templates, policies, and ID pools from UCS Central allowing customers to bring up an additional domain in minutes instead of hours or days.
|Consistent Service Profiles across domains
||Global Service Profiles, templates, and policies are available across multiple domains. UCS Central automates the task of replicating the information and ensuring consistency, helping to ensure compliance, simplify HA and DR deployments, and reduce troubleshooting time.
|Centralized, In-depth Inventory
||Simplified inventory reporting and analysis across multiple domains reduces administrative overhead from hours or days to minutes.
|Centralized Fault Manager
||With all of the faults in one place, it helps eliminate oversights, enables quicker problem resolution, and helps provide higher levels of uptime, allowing the team to support more systems with the same people.
|Capacity and Performance Planning
||Detailed bandwidth, power, and thermal statistics that are kept for two weeks or one year instead of 24 hours in UCS Manager enable better system optimization, higher utilization levels, and fewer performance issues. Proper sizing reduces direct costs.
||Automatically get scheduled updates of new firmware bundles pulled into UCS Central and automatically pushed to relevant UCS Manger instances as needed, based on policies. This reduces the administrator time when managing firmware.
If UCS Central 1.1 is something that you would like to try, you can download it from Cisco.com. It will work for 120 days without a license, so Read More »
Tags: Cisco UCS Central, Cisco UCS Manager, Cisco UCSM