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What’s Driving Cisco Innovations in the Data Center?

There are a number of trends that are impacting data centers today, many of which will have a profound impact on how businesses consume data center resources.  These can provide a variety of challenges.  Perhaps most obvious, is the fact that people and businesses are more connected than ever with the proliferation of mobile devices and tablets.  These new devices are driving more applications, more users, and an insatiable appetite for network bandwidth.  This blog will discuss a few of these trends and how Cisco is shaping its data center strategy to enable customers to meet these rapidly changing demands.

IDC Virtualization Trends

 

 

Another major data center trend that is driving change in the data center is the continued adoption of virtualization technologies.  What’s interesting is that although server spending has remained relatively flat for over a decade, there is still a great deal of “head room” for companies to further adopt virtualization.

 

 

IDC Virtualization Adoption

 

 

In fact, IDC studies show that many applications are yet to be virtualized as the chart to the right indicates.  However, virtualization is driving complexity elsewhere including the network, software and storage.  So what has created a more agile server, has not necessarily created a more agile system.

 

The next major trend is that of Cloud Computing, with more business leveraging private, public or potentially even hybrid cloud models.  Some actually forecast that there could eventually be a small number of mega data centers and companies will all leverage capacity exclusively from these since they can offer extreme efficiencies.  The truth is, there are two ends of the spectrum, some customers will prefer to host their own infrastructure and others may choose to use Cloud providers exclusively.  We are finding today that many customers are somewhere in the middle and choose their model based on the application needs.

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More on Management and Orchestration – Part 1 – Desktop Virtualization Automation

May 21, 2013 at 1:52 pm PST

Over the past year or so, from time to time, I’ve blogged about what we in Cisco Services have been doing with our Management and Orchestration solutions – for example Cisco Intelligent Automation for cloud – which I discussed in the Automation domain in my Cisco Domain Ten series, and also here, when we introduced a new release.   Cisco’s Automation and Orchestration technology has applications beyond cloud Infrastructure as a Services (IaaS), so let me tell you over a few blogs what else our Cisco Services team can help you achieve with this flexible automation technology, where customer needs for simplicity, automation and end user productivity are in the driving seat.

I’ll start with Desktop Virtualization Automation – specifically in the provisioning process.  And while I’m at this, let me highlight our upcoming Bright Talk Webinar, scheduled for May 29th at 8am PST (5pm CET), where you can see a demonstration of our Desktop Virtualization Automation solution in action- you can register for this seminar here.

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A Cloud Management Solution You Can Believe In, Or Better Yet, Bank On

Guest Blogger: Yair Dolev (@CiscoCloudY) brings extensive experience in enterprise application development and management of advanced data center virtualization technology products to Cisco’s Cloud and Systems Management Technology Group. Prior to Cisco, Yair was Director of Product Management at data center automation authority Tidal Software, and managed the groundbreaking Azul Virtual Machine products at Azul Systems, which enabled data centers to run large Java workloads on highly scalable, optimized hardware. 

In my last blog entry, I told you about some of the most fundamental new concepts in Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud (IAC) v3.1 and how they help address top-of-mind issues for our customers. This time I’d like to address a matter no less significant.

At the core of every cloud initiative there always lurks a concern about the sustained viability of such a comprehensive transformation – and this applies to adoption of a new cloud operating model as well as to the deployment of the new technology required. It boils down to two things: trust and cost. Can I trust that this solution will still fit me in the future, and how much will I really have to pay for this fit?

One of the things I really like about Cisco IAC is that it’s built around a core software platform that allows for an amazing level of flexibility and extensibility. Our software can be configured and adapted to closely fit what your IT organization wants to offer to meet your unique business needs. The user portal can be made to look different and behave differently for a variety of users, and it can enforce your organization’s policies and controls. The orchestration engine is adaptable to model a wide range of customer processes, and it’s extensible to communicate with other IT operations management software, OSS/BSS tools or infrastructure systems. Our solution can be extended beyond infrastructure services, to encompass a broad range of IT and business services at the platform and application layer (more on this later). The best news is: you can protect the investment you made so that the changes persist through future product updates. Let’s review some of these key capabilities:

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Intelligent Automation at Cisco Live in San Diego #CLUS

Are you ready for the biggest Cisco event of the year? We’ve been working on demos, speaking sessions, and social events for the conference – and it’s finally here.

The Intelligent Automation team are converging in force on San Diego for Cisco Live.  Our solutions will be covered in more than a dozen conference sessions and several theater presentations – featured in topics ranging from cloud management and big data to BYOD and VXI.

And here are our demos featured in the Cisco data center booth at the World of Solutions expo:

  • Tidal Enterprise Scheduler on Hadoop – this demo shows how to increase the value of big data environments through better information flow.
  • Network Services Manager – a flexible, policy-driven approach to managing and controlling network services in a multi-tenant data center.
  • VXI Orchestration – provision virtual desktop services on-demand with Intelligent Automation, in minutes instead of days or weeks. 

Intelligent Automation for Cloud and Network Services Manager will also be featured in the CloudVerse area, highlighting our Unified Management capabilities for cloud orchestration and automation.

Our cloud solutions will be featured in theater presentations at the VCE and NetApp booths, as well as a demo in the VCE booth. Some of our other Intelligent Automation technology partners like Comptel, rPath, and Zenoss – as well as channel partners including Presidio and WWT – will also be at the event showcasing our collaboration.  See VCE’s press release featuring Intelligent Automation for Cloud.

To make it easy for you to help you pinpoint the Intelligent Automation team and navigate through the conference, here are some tips for your agenda:

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Server Life cycle

The terms “life cycle” conjure up an image of a biology class on butterflies for me.  The metamorphosis that a butterfly undergoes is very interesting. Every stage has a specific purpose:

In the data center, life cycle of servers is something we deal with all the time.  For analysis we could consider physical, virtual or software servers just like I did in a previous blog. I drew the life cycle of the 3 servers and the resulting diagram is below.  Interestingly a physical server is the only one that can be truly re-purposed, more like the stages in the life cycle of a butterfly.

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