Recent results clearly reinforce the growing understanding that Cisco has unleashed a more highly evolved and effective solution into the computing ecosystem. While the principles outlined by Charles Darwin in Origin of the Species can stir controversy, I find them to be an accurate model for technology evolution and quite useful for describing how we’ve arrived at this latest watershed in the x86 server market.
Our first observation would be the extremely rapid rate of customer adoption for Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS). Darwin would tell us that there must be significant advantage in “fitness to purpose” inherent to UCS that have driven this velocity. This is certainly true. Looking back at where we’ve been and how we’re positioned to go forward, here are key factors I see at play that create these advantages for UCS adopters:
Primitive incumbents in the server industry attempted converged infrastructure by choosing to combine compute and storage first. Cisco chose to converge compute and fabric first. This is a critical threshold event because it turns out that most optimizations for virtualization and cloud are fabric-oriented. With our Virtual Interface Cards we made server NICs and HBAs part of the fabric, not part of the server, a significant mutation in computing design. Further, Cisco abstracted every single identity and configuration element for servers, network access and storage into a programmable software model -- inventing fabric computing with stateless servers. Simple. Flexible. Resilient. Advantage: UCS Read More »
Over the past three years, Cisco has vaulted from the not only the leader in the networking industry, but they have become the number two blade vendor in the US and number three world-wide. This has caused some pause on the part of the top platform vendors in the industry.
Cisco is now making an impact on the application world as well. Last week at SAP Sapphire, the largest world-wide industry trade show for SAP in Orlando, Vishal Sikka, a member of the SAP Executive Board, specifically called out Cisco as a SAP HANA Server Platform Vendor in addition to their world-wide leadership role in the networking space. This was significant because this clearly puts Cisco in a different category as they gain market share in the SAP Application and SAP HANA space.
The result of this announcement was clearly visible at the Cisco booth at Sapphire. Cisco was an Onyx sponsor at Sapphire and demonstrated the many solutions that Cisco has with SAP. In the booth there was SAP HANA, SAP on Vblock, SAP on FlexPod, IT Process Automation, Afaria, and Precision Retail. The Cisco UCS Server Platform, Fabric Extender and Nexus are the basis for all these solutions with SAP. The result is Lower Total Cost of Ownership on a standardized x86 platform.
Interop 2013 took place last week in Las Vegas from May 6-10 and despite wireless connectivity at the Mandalay Bay being dreadful, #Interop 2013 was very well received by customers, partners, and analysts. Our booth location was ideal, and we were situated in between Huawei and HP. This made for interesting conversations as attendees went from booth to booth looking for giveaways.
I wanted to share some of the highlights and buzz from the show. For a complete photo album, please visit our facebook channel
See Jacob Rapp and Robb Boyd discuss Unified Fabric trends in the Data Center
The data center landscape has changed dramatically in several dimensions. Server virtualization is almost a defacto standard with a big increase in VM density. And there is a move towards world of many clouds. Then there is the massive data growth. Some studies show that data is doubling in every 2 years while there is an increased adoption of solid-state drives (SSD). All of these megatrends demand new solutions in the SAN market. To meet these needs, Cisco’s introducing the next generation Storage Network innovations with the new MDS 9710 Multilayer Director and new MDS 9250i Multiservice Switch. These new multi-protocol, services-rich MDS innovations redefine storage networking with superior performance, reliability and flexibility!
We are, once again, demonstrating Cisco’s extraordinary capability to bring to market innovations that meet our customer needs today and tomorrow.
For example, with the new MDS solutions, we are announcing 16 Gigabit Fibre Channel (FC) and 10 Gigabit Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) support. But guess what? This is just couple of the many innovations we are introducing. In other words, we bring 16 Gigabit FC and beyond to our customers:
A NEW BENCHMARK FOR PERFORMANCE
We design our solutions with future requirements in mind. We want to create long term value for our customers and investment protection moving forward.
The switching fabric in the MDS 9710 is one example of this design philosophy. The MDS 9710 chassis can accommodate up to six fabric cards delivering:
1.536 Tbps per slot for Fibre Channel – 24 Tbps per chassis capacity
Only 3 fabric cards are required to support full 16G line rate capacity
Supports up to 384 Line Rate 16G FC or 10G FCoE ports
So there is room for growth for higher throughput in the future …without forklift upgrades
This is more thanthree times the bandwidth of any Director in the market today – providing our customers with a superior investment protection for any future needs!
The data center landscape has changed dramatically in several dimensions. Server virtualization is almost a defacto in our customers’ data centers with a big increase in VM density. They are also moving towards world of many clouds. And then there is the massive data growth. Some studies show that data is doubling in every 2 years while there is an increase in the adoption of solid-state drives (SSD). Several of our customers are also either consolidating their data centers or forming mega data centers. All of these mega trends certainly come with increasing challenges for the Storage Administrator as the storage network is becoming more critical as it is the strategic asset in the Data Centers.
Take a look at this short video with Richard Darnielle (Director of Product Management for MDS Product lines) and me. Richard shares his insights on the mega trends that will shape the next-generation storage networks.
Guess what? Once again Cisco is here to help you on your journey to addressing these mega trends by raising the bar for storage networks. How you ask?