Hey data heads! O’Reilly Strata Conference kicks off tomorrow at the Santa Clara Convention Center. If you plan to go you better have tickets because the event is sold out.
If you are attending the three days of sessions, keynotes, receptions and exhibits, please stop by the MapR booth for some face time with one of our big data partners and plan to attend their sponsored panel discussion which includes Cisco IT and other MapR customers facilitated by Mike Gualtieri from Forrester Research.
Best Practices for Hadoop In Production
“Mike Gualtieri, principal analyst at Forrester Research, Inc., will engage a panel of production Hadoop users – including Cisco IT, The Climate Corporation, The Rubicon Project, and Solutionary – to discuss the challenges and best practices for deploying Hadoop in production. Join us for an engaging conversation on tips and tricks in deploying Hadoop in production. 10:40am, Wednesday February 12 in Ballroom H” See more here.
Representing Cisco IT will be Distinguished Engineer, Piyush Bhargava. Piyush is Chief Architect for Data Architecture & Innovation and is responsible for finding new ways of harnessing value from data and for designing architectures to support data processing, analytics & data science needs.
If you can’t make it to Strata Conference or are double booked during this time slot you can get the goods on this topic from a number of other sources.
First, check out the webinar Cisco and MapR produced with Mike that highlights the Cisco IT case study. Mike outlines the 7 Best Practices for Productionizing Hadoop, MapR follows with their best practices for data tables and Cisco IT covers their big data use case. If you want to skip to the Cisco IT use case, it starts at 34:00.
Then, take a look at my blog post on the Cisco IT big data platform success story. Cisco IT has standardized on Cisco UCS servers and fabric interconnects for its big data infrastructure and uses MapR for data tables.
For operational workloads, Cisco IT has standardized company-wide on Cisco Tidal Enterprise Scheduler with its unique set of adapters that include API integrations to MapR, Hive and Sqoop for big data workload processing.
Next, spend some time reading the Unleashing IT Big Data Edition. This special edition of Unleashing IT is all about big data and highlights our joint Cisco/MapR customer Solutionary who incidentally, will join Cisco IT on the Strata Conference panel discussion on Wednesday. This e-zine is packed full of big data thought leadership; best practices for infrastructure and operations; customer success stories and include our partners Intel, MapR and others.
Finally, peruse the Cisco big data website for all the latest on our solutions, partners, services and resources to help you make the best informed decision on moving your big data platform from development to production.
Cisco continues to work closely on technologies and solutions around the UCS compute family so we can bring maximum value to you and your Microsoft oriented datacenters. The UCS family is well suited for Windows Server, Hyper-V and VMware based private clouds, and support for the key workloads of SQL Server, Exchange, and SharePoint. Recently I was inventorying our Microsoft oriented UCS case studies and came up with several that showcased UCS’s architectural strengths as well as good business value returns.
As you have probably noticed, the Cisco and SAP partnership keeps growing -- Here is some of the recent news
 Unisys, RealTech and others install SAP HANA on Cisco UCS
” Manufacturers are struggling with the provisioning of applications into the infrastructure” In this video, Joachim Weide, Director Transformation Services, Unisys talks about SAP HANA on Cisco UCS and explains how the unique capability of UCS helps to run complex SAP landscapes in a virtualized environment .
 Cisco SAP Competency Center Expansion
Recently Cisco expanded its SAP Competency Center in Walldorf Germany to an entire floor in the SAP Partner Port. As part of that expansion, Cisco invited customers and partners to that expansion and offered a customer led workshop while there. Over 200 customers and partners attended this coming out party for Cisco in Walldorf.
This opening also provided an opportunity to gain some valuable insight from these customers and partners, including SAP, about their decision to install SAP HANA on Cisco UCS.
In this video , SAP VP Kevin Chew shares with Jim Mc Hugh, Cisco VP UCS Marketing the importance of the partnership with Cisco for SAP customers
 SAP HANA on Cisco UCS
During the opening , Jim McHugh had also a conversation with the head of the Cisco SAP Competency Center Dr Michael Missbach, about the services that Cisco can offer to customers
In this video Dr Missbach talked about the “secured shared network implementation ” of HANA , a new and unique feature provided by the Cisco UCS environment , which allows customers to run several solutions on one UCS platform .
 Cisco Executive Vice President Sales and Development Rob Lloyd and SAP
In the recent SAP Field Kick-Off Meetings in Singapore, Barcelona, and Las Vegas, SAP had three main focus areas: SAP HANA, Cloud, and Simplicity. Cisco’s Rob Lloyd was featured in that keynote citing Cisco’s #1 position as a cloud company and their #2 position worldwide for blade servers.
Cisco’s award winning converged infrastructure management software solution just got even better! In the latest release of Cisco UCS Director, we’ve added broader and deeper infrastructure support across the compute, network, storage and virtualization layers, as well making the product even more scalable. The latest release also comes with new software development kits (SDKs) for partners to provide extensibility and interoperability and a northbound API for integration with Cisco’s Intelligent Automation for Cloud (IAC) as well as other cloud management systems. Let’s take a closer look at these enhancements in detail.
SDKs and APIs
UCS Director’s new SDKs and APIs were recently made available to give our partners the following functionality:
Northbound API which integrates into higher platforms like Cisco IAC. This API enables you to perform operations on Cisco UCS Director resources and to integrate those operations into applications so that they can provide API-supported functionality and features.
SDK available on cisco.com & DevNet (CDN), which provides open automation for partners looking to create new device connector
UCS Manager 2.1 (Delmar); KVM console; SAN zoning through UCS Manager; standalone management of UCS C-SeriesUCS Integration -Local disk provisioning and policies
-Workflow tasks for vNIC templates and service profile
-Assign blade or server pool to group
-Cloning of profile and profile template
Whiptail – application acceleration
Invicta, Acella API Version 1.5 support
CRUD actions, workflows, and reports
Converged and stack views
UCS Central Integration
-Multi-domain Manager concept
-Inventory for UCS-M elements
-Local/global service profile and templates
-Pools and policies for network and storage equivalent to UCS-M
We are almost at the end of January in 2014 and Cisco Live is underway in Europe. The IT landscape is changing rapidly, and we all need to adapt to it. In a previous blog I had listed some of the high priority issues for IT in 2014, and in this blog I will emphasize the rate of change needed to keep pace.
Cyber threats are growing in all forms and shapes.
From retail giants like Target to local school districts, all have been targets of attacks last year. This 2014 Cisco security report is an eye opener. The use of cloud computing and mobile devices is only increasing the complexity of security. Vulnerabilities are increasing because data centers have thus far adopted “bolt on” security measures i.e disparate technologies with multiple control points that were never meant to work together. Malicious actors are working faster to exploit gaps. IT must adapt quickly to this new normal.
IT must now deliver services not technology
Business expects IT to deliver consistent high quality services. Projects will not be one off, siloed, custom solutions. This is akin to moving away from a job shop model to a highly industrialized continuous flow model in the world of manufacturing. Projects will get more complex due to the use of shared resources and the resulting interrelationships. All this calls for a high degree of automation and service assurance mechanisms, resulting in more changes to the IT department. At Cisco, we are working hard to provide IT the necessary tools to adapt to these changes. UCS Manager is still the gold standard in automating converged infrastructure setup and maintenance. This is made possible with the service profile innovation shown in the video below. To find out more about UCS Manager attend this meetup in Santa Clara on the 27th of Feb.