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Cisco @ Microsoft WPC 2012: New Channel Partner Opportunities

July 2, 2012 at 1:54 pm PST

Microsoft’s annual channel event – their Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) – kicks off in Toronto in a few days on July 8. Cisco is a gold sponsor at WPC this year and we will be showcasing our Cisco UCS Intel-based server and Nexus switch families to the expected 15,000 Microsoft System Integrators, distributors, LARs, and VARs in attendance.

Cisco, with UCS and Nexus, provides tremendous data center engagement opportunities for channel partners to drive revenue generation. Microsoft will continue to roll out new product revisions for Windows Server, System Center, and SQL Server over the next few months.

With a 73 percent Intel Server market share as measured by IDC, Microsoft Windows Server and associated workloads are present in most all commercial and enterprise accounts worldwide. Here are a few actions you can take to leverage Cisco UCS and Nexus engagement for your clients and customers:

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Accelerate UNIX to Linux Migrations with FlexPod – RedHat Summit 2012

June 27, 2012 at 5:30 am PST

Over the past years, with the growing success of UCS, the partnership between Cisco and Redhat  has been stronger and stronger. Cisco is a Gold Sponsor of the RedHat Summit 2012 in Boston, and the UCS platform has been once more again praised on stage in front of the 3000 participants . During his keynote address yesterday SAP Sybase’s Irfan Khan, senior vice president and chief technology officer, announced that  in two-tier SAP Sales and Distribution (SD) standard application benchmarks, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization and its Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) hypervisor running the SAP ERP 6.0 application achieved leading performance results  running on… Cisco UCS  servers *.

If UCS attracts more and more SAP customers, the Oracle customers can also rely on this platform to gain significant performances and reduce cost as they migrate from a Risc migration environment to Cisco UCS .Check the blogs from Cisco Timothy Stack on this topic.

One of the best way to achieve this migration from Unix to Linux, is certainly in deploying a solution such as Flexpod, presented at RedHat Summit 2012 by NetApp, which is a Silver Sponsor (see NetApp activities here) -- So I ask  Jon Benedict  (@CaptainKVM) , oVirt board member and NetApp Sr Virtualization Solutions Architect to share with us what Flexpod can provide in this context.

“Anyone who has had to maintain a rigid, outdated infrastructure knows it’s a time-consuming and painful process. Prior to joining NetApp I was a Red Hat solution architect and led a mainframe migration project for a large financial services company running both Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and Solaris. We were confronted with an issue that impacted both platforms; getting the issue resolved with Red Hat and the newer Solaris versions was relatively straightforward but custom-tweaked applications running on older, end of life platforms required a ridiculously expensive per system financial investment. A key outcome of the project was the requirement that the IT team create a plan for migrating older Solaris-based applications from UNIX to Linux.

FlexPod would have been a great way to handle this, but unfortunately this project was pre-FlexPod.

The Cisco Unified Computing System represents an ideal computing platform for Linux-based applications while the joint collaboration between Cisco, NetApp and Red Hat is key to accelerating this type of transition. Instead of just upgrading servers and the operating system, our pre-validated FlexPod data center platform enables you to modernize your infrastructure holistically with an integrated solution including Cisco UCS servers, Cisco Nexus switches, and NetApp FAS storage. As my marketing guys love to say, “It’s a platform capable of meeting your needs today and scaling to meet your needs in the future.”  Like me, the comment looks fluffy but it’s solid.

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Cisco Live, Day 1

June 12, 2012 at 6:57 pm PST

So, I wrapped up CiscoLive Day 1 with a chance to catch up at the end of the day with Fred Nix of EMC (@NixFred) and Vaughn Stewart of NetApp (@vStewed). While the conversation covered a number of topics, not all them appropriate for a corporate blog, we did commit this part of the conversation to tape.  I think this segment  highlights a couple of things.  First, how our ecosystem of data center partners is second to none--these guys are rock stars and they represent equally cool companies.  Second, I think this really shows how much IT has evolved and the lines have blurred so that folks like EMC and NetApp are able move beyond their storage roots and deliver comprehensive infrastructure solutions to our customers through their vBlock and FlexPod offerings, respectively.

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Cisco and NetApp: Build a Strong Foundation for Private Cloud with Flexpod for SAP Applications

June 8, 2012 at 1:51 am PST

Do I still need to introduce Flexpod, the integrated stack from Cisco, NetApp and VMware ? We wrote in this blog several times about this solution , which is obviously pretty successful.

NetApp, like EMC and HDS , is a very good partner of Cisco Data Center. That’s why I strongly encourage you when going to Cisco Live next week in San Diego  to visit NetApp booth (#826) , and attend the theater presentation (Tuesday 6:45 pm PST)dedicated to Flexpod  on Cisco booth .

Of course Flexpod is not the only integrated stacks that Cisco is providing on the market  –Vblock from VCE is another example. But we have reasons to believe that Flexpod is definitely a very good solution and approach for converged infrastructure and private cloud deployment  in a mission critical application environment .  Recently we wrote about Flexpod with Microsoft private cloud,  and even more recently about Flexpod and Citrix desktop virtualization.

At SAPPHIRE 2012, I asked Cisco VP Server Access and Virtualization Satinder Sethi  , and NetApp VP Thomas Stanley Global Alliances and System Integrators,  to tell us what benefits this pre-integrated unified architecture is bringing to the SAP customers.

As a proof point of the business impact of Flexpod, I invite you to watch what Waltz  executives have  to say about the benefits of this solution.
Established in 1985, the Walz Group is a leading provider of critical communications and compliance solutions – This solution allow the IT organization to focus on improving products and services instead of infrastructure support.

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FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud: 1st Solution Validated for Microsoft’s Private Cloud Fast Track Program

April 19, 2012 at 5:00 pm PST

We’re pleased to announce that that Cisco’s and NetApp’s new FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud solution is the first design validated by Microsoft for their updated Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track 2.0 program.

Built on Windows Server 2008 R2, Hyper-V, and System Center 2012 this new FlexPod offer helps customer reduce infrastructure and application deployment times from days to hours while helping them achieve greater utilization of their physical and virtual resource pools.

Various integration points of the solution were demonstrated for the first time this week at Microsoft’s Management Summit 2012 (MMS) in the Cisco booth as well as the NetApp booth.  Here MMS attendees learned about, and saw in real-time action, the extremely tight integration with System Center and Windows Server that both companies have engineered in the solution.

The Cisco UCS Management Packs and NetApp® OnCommand™ plug-in to System Center 2012 allowing customers to monitor and manage FlexPod and any applications running on top—from a single interface. Customers can then comprehensively manage NetApp storage systems and Cisco UCS from within System Center 2012, and they can automate compute and storage workflows across their cloud infrastructure.

To learn more details on the FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud architecture, please visit:  http://www.cisco.com/en/US/solutions/collateral/ns340/ns517/ns224/ns1150/ns1154/ucs_flexpod_ms_netapp.pdf  

 

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