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Cisco ‘Walks the Walk’ – Showcasing in Their Second Data Center in Allen, Texas

April 4, 2011 at 3:39 pm PST

On April 15th Cisco will be opening a second data center in Allen, Texas.  This is not just any data center ladies and gents, this state-of-the-art data center demonstrates Cisco’s architectural vision and strategy by incorporation their latest innovations; Unified Computing System (UCS), Nexus switch portfolios, and the latest green technologies.

What degree of green are we talking about? LED lighting – naturally, solar power -- absolutely,  water-efficient landscaping – by all means, use of recycled building materials – affirmative. But to take it up a notch, Cisco used LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) when building the data center.   LEED is an internationally recognized green building certification system that provides third-party verification that a building was designed and built using strategies intended to improve performance metrics such as energy saving, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reductions, etc.  

You can listen to a live broadcast on April 15that 3:30pm, ET with CIO Rebecca Jacoby and VP of IT John Manville.   They will discuss in more detail about how it was built to be “ultra green” and how this data center fits into Cisco’s overall data center and cloud strategy: www.ustream.tv/ciscotv.   

It is exciting to see what was first a vision of a data center strategy, that developed into products to grow with that strategy.  Makes me ponder what will the 3rddata center be comprised of?  Walk that walk Cisco (with a carbon-free footprint of course).

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New Innovations in Data Center and Virtualization Promise More Agility

Yet another way for your business to become even more agile: That’s the promise of new updates to Cisco’s Data Center and Virtualization architectures. Today we’re announcing new innovations for virtualized and secure cloud-ready environments that deliver on Cisco’s architectural flexibility, investment protection, and operational simplicity in a secure and scalable manner.

So what’s new? Well, for starters, we’ll have wire-once, end-to-end data center convergence from server to storage array with director class, multihop FCoE for the Nexus 7000 and MDS 9500 platforms. We’ll also offer converged Data Center Management with Data Center Network Manager (DCNM) for single pane of glass visibility across LAN & SAN.

We will also offer you the ability to build a secure, cloud-ready fabric infrastructure, with LISP and MPLS on the Nexus 7000, ES-40 module on the Catalyst 6500, ACE-30 with Cloudburst (dynamic workload scaling) functionality leveraging OTV, a new Firewall Service Module (FWSM) on the Catalyst 6500, and DCNM APIs for Cloud orchestration.

What’s in it for partners? Here’s the scoop. Read More »

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Optimize the Data Center

March 3, 2011 at 11:30 am PST

CiscoLive London was an incredible trip and gosh it was only 30 days ago – our first little project out of that voyage is TechWiseTV85 our latest episode on Data Center technologies.  Data Center Optimization: The Next Stage is now available for your viewing pleasure in our ‘still has that new website smell’ environment we affectionately call the CVC (Cisco Virtual Connection).

This show was another exercise in self-restraint as the DC team had brought out an amazing selection – if we were hoping that a global show would mean a smaller show…we were out of luck.

So how to narrow it down?

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Virtualize Microsoft Enterprise Applications (Exchange, Sharepoint and SQL Server) on FlexPod for VMware

Few days back I blogged about how FlexPod for VMware is a great solution that can accelerate your cloud journey and help move beyond 30% virtualized datacenter (Test & Dev workloads, infrastructure servers, web servers etc.) to virtualizing enterprise applications (e.g. Microsoft, Oracle, SAP etc.), and finally -- implement a fully automated IT as a Service solution.

In lot of customer environments, Microsoft applications (e.g. Exchange, Sharepoint, and SQL Server) support a good portion of mission critical business operations. These Microsoft applications have traditionally been hosted on siloed, underutilized IT infrastructure and operational processes that were built based on the requirements of individual applications and processes. The end result is increased total cost of ownership and inability to help business be more agile, introduce new services, and achieve operational efficiency.

Here are some of the key operational benefits to virtualizing Microsoft Apps on FlexPod for VMware:

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The SAN Boot, soon will be making another LUN.

As part of some current SharePoint 2010 on FlexPod work, I have been setting up some VMware ESX servers to boot from SAN. After a few quick searchs I found a few very good posts online.

BootFromSAN101 with Cisco UCS
UCS Boot Whitepaper

I thought the BootFromSAN 101  post had a good outline. So I decided to take it a few steps futher and create a video on NetApp storage provisioning, Cisco Nexus 5000 zoning and Cisco UCS boot from SAN for VMware vSphere ESXi 4.1.

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