This morning NetApp and Cisco announced how the companies are helping channel partners sell and deploy their FlexPod design architecture with Microsoft Windows Server Hyper-V. This is a major expansion of our partnership with Microsoft, so I picked up the phone and called Rick Snyder, vice president of Global Strategic Partner Organization here at Cisco to ask him a few questions.
Q: What’s the deal with this FlexPod solution with Microsoft? And what do our channel partners need to know about it?
A: So, Alex, today Cisco release a new Cisco Validated Design for the FlexPod shared infrastructure with Microsoft Private Cloud solutions to help ease deployments of the Microsoft Private Cloud solutions built on our shared infrastructure with NetApp. Also, FlexPods can be purchased pre-integrated for our US and Canada Channel partners through our work with Avnet. As part of its FlexPod Services, Avnet offers many different applications preloaded on the FlexPod.
Q: Shared infrastructure? Is that like a timeshare?
A: (laughs) Well in a way yes, but rather than a room in a Caribbean, we are the data center hardware in the data center. We’ve furnished the data center with the necessary hardware to house many different applications from VMware, Citrix, and now for our Microsoft Private Cloud customers. We feed these applications with data center resources like computing, industry leading memory, network bandwidth, and storage capacity to offer end users an enjoyable experience.
NetApp and Cisco continue to innovate and deliver new popular FlexPod solutions. These pre-designed and pre-tested Data Center infrastructure offerings are built on a unified architecture comprised of Cisco UCS servers, Cisco Nexus switches, and NetApp storage with Data ONTAP.
We’re pleased to announce FlexPod validated with Microsoft private cloud, a new offering which brings the benefits of the FlexPod architecture to Microsoft Windows Server and Hyper-V environments with System Center integration.
Microsoft Windows Server and Microsoft applications such as Exchange, SharePoint, SQL Server, and VDI are key workloads we often find in our customer’s UCS installations. UCS provides an optimum compute solution for these Microsoft applications delivering an agile, simple, and efficient Data Center platform. Please visit the FlexPod validated with Microsoft Private Cloud site here to learn more on how Cisco and NetApp are enabling your journey to the Microsoft Private Cloud.
by John Rollason, Senior Manager Product, Solutions & Alliances EMEA, NetApp
For many years the server market was dominated by the likes of IBM, HP/Compaq, Fujitsu, Dell, Sun and characterised by small market share shifts. True the market changed as rack and blade servers became popular, but most of the players recognized the shift and adapted. Then Server Virtualisation technologies changed the market and Cisco disrupted it completely with the launch of the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) in 2009. Today Cisco’s vision for server virtualization has been proven successful with more than 10,000 UCS customers and 54 UCS world record results. Customers obviously see the advantage!
Just over a year ago NetApp and Cisco introduced FlexPod, a pre-designed, pre-tested and validated Data Centre cloud solution built on modular and unified architecture composed of Cisco UCS servers, Cisco Nexus switches, and NetApp unified storage systems running Data ONTAP. FlexPod components are integrated and standardized to help you eliminate the guesswork and achieve timely, repeatable, consistent deployments. FlexPod has also been optimized with a variety of mixed application workloads and design configurations in various environments such as virtual desktop infrastructure and secure multi-tenancy environments.
Today more than 500 customers across 33 countries are seeing the benefits of Cisco UCS + NetApp. In fact, I”ve blogged about European FlexPod customers including Accenture, Börse Stuttgart, Computacenter, Terremark, Guiness Partnership, Loughborough University, and many more.
This week at Cisco Live London 2012 you’ll have the opportunity to hear directly from several organizations transforming their infrastructures and businesses on FlexPod and talk with variety of partners activity selling and developing solutions built on FlexPod. NetApp is a Platinum sponsor of Cisco Live and I’ll be at NetApp Stand P1 with the rest of the team for the 4th year. Highlights include:
Five fiscal years ago, only 3 individuals remained as months of interviews and screen tests concluded. None of us really knew what we were in for but it sounded interesting for sure. I had been in the sales field originally hired as an account manager, survived the job cuts of 2000 by re-casting myself as a security expert and became the first Security PSS of the South. I thought I was applying for a role in Cisco’s Speakers Bureau.
In August of 2006, Felicia Ferranti reached to introduce herself as the subject matter expert for our Unified Communications show. Felicia had been killing it as a sales rep in Los Angeles and she fit the profile for what TechWiseTV was chartered with: To scale the best messaging on the broadest reach platform.
Our trio was rounded out by a non-Cisco engineer we had not met right away. We were already hearing rumbling of his expertise as you could tell even in the final interview rounds if someone had already talked to him…the questions got a lot harder. We stole Jimmy Ray from HP where he was very well known as the engineer you wanted on your deals – did not matter what the tool or the technology was. He was (and is) the smartest, humblest, passionate SE you could find.
It was an incredibly confusing, tiring start to what is now, still tiring, but much more definable and certainly rewarding. Many people played a part in the early years and remain rooted as lynch pins in our history.