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Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System: Complexity and Cost Comparison

June 25, 2013 at 3:29 pm PST

Complexity and Cost Comparison: Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System is report recently published by Principled Technologies.

They evaluated both the technologies and costs of each solution and found a UCS solution is both less expensive to deploy and less complex to manage than an IBM Flex System.

Off all the ways Principled Technologies shows how UCS is a superior solution, I wanted to touch on just one: highly available and scalable management. A UCS management domain consists of a pair of Fabric Interconnects and supports up to 160 blade and/or rack servers. In contrast, IBM is limited to 54 blade servers plus a non-redundant Flex System Manager node. Quoting from the paper:

Because IBM Flex System Manager nodes do not failover automatically like the Cisco UCS solution, administrators must manually connect to a backup node and bring it online. Each target system has an OS agent that remains registered to the original FSM node and does not recognize the new FSM. Admins must manually unregister each of these agents from the failed node and then register the new FSM node. [page 7]

Read the full report to learn the many additional ways which UCS is shown to be superior solution and why Cisco has leapt ahead of IBM and is now the #2 blade server vendor worldwide1

Principled Technologies Complexity and Cost Comparison Cisco UCS vs. IBM Flex System from Cisco Data Center

 

Would like to learn more about how Cisco is changing the economics of the datacenter, I would encourage you to review this presentation on SlideShare  or my previous series of blog posts, Yes, Cisco UCS servers are that good.

  1. Source:  IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker, Q1 2013 Revenue Share, May 2013

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Cisco UCS in a world with lotsa data

June 24, 2013 at 4:25 pm PST

My previous blogs have turned into a “in a world” series introducing the reader to the versatility of the Cisco Unified Computing System.  We are no strangers to the fact that data collection and data records are exploding.  The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to add a lot more data to our treasure trove.  As more objects are embedded with sensors and get the ability to communicate even more data will be collected and stored. Here at Cisco, we see the Internet of Everything (IoE), which goes beyond IoT when we add people, processes and information to the mix.  Cisco defines IoE as bringing together people, process, data, and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before—turning information into actions that create new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented economic opportunity for businesses, individuals, and countries.  Check out http://blogs.cisco.com/ioe/how-the-internet-of-everything-will-change-the-worldfor-the-better-infographic/

Clearly the Internet of everything (IoE) will affect the data center in many ways. In this video Cisco VP Satinder Sethi, gives us a perspective on some of the challenges and how Cisco is partnering with other IT companies to solve the problems.

Organizations can transform, mine or analyze the data collected to create new business models, improve business processes, and reduce costs and risks. The recent NSA scandal of tacking phone records indicates it can be used to improve physical security. Read More »

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Top Three Reasons Why Cisco UCS is a Better Platform for Big Data

One of the hottest topics in the data center lately is around big data and the actual dollar value that businesses are deriving from making sense from tons of unstructured data.  Virtually every field is turning to gathering big data, with mobile sensor networks, cameras everywhere, and information archives.  New techniques are being developed that can mine vast stores of data to inform decision making in ways that were previously unimagined.   The fact that we can derive more knowledge by recognizing correlations can inform and enrich numerous aspects of every day life.

Cisco is partnering with leading software providers to offer a comprehensive infrastructure and management solution, based on Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS), to support our customers’ big data initiatives.  Taking advantage of Cisco UCS’s Fabric based infrastructure, Cisco can apply significant advantage to big data workloads.

There are actually many advantages to hosting big data applications on Cisco UCS infrastructure.  With UCS, Cisco offers a balance of performance, management and scale that sets UCS apart from other industry solutions.  Although we’ll be discussing the benefits in more detail at Cisco Live next week, here is a sneak peak of what you can expect:

Reason #1 to deploy Cisco UCS for your big data analytics: Form factor independence and administrative parity.

 

Cisco UCS

Cisco UCS provides a single point of management for the overall infrastructure—whether it’s blade architecture on the enterprise application side or rack architecture on the big data side, including troubleshooting, monitoring, and alerting capabilities. Customers can proactively monitor the system and keep operational costs down.

In other words, Cisco UCS Rack Servers can be managed the same way as UCS Blade servers with full workload mobility across both blades and racks.  This simplifies the management construct and eliminates the need for additional management silos in the data center.  This form factor independence is made possible by Cisco Unified Fabric with single wire management and Cisco Unified Management that includes UCS Manager with Service Profiles.

Read More »

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Cisco at Microsoft Tech Ed: 3 Years of Innovation and Recognition Has Prepared Us for Today’s and Tomorrow’s I.T. Demands

June 18, 2013 at 9:14 pm PST

TechEdAwards

Like many of you I have spent the past week or so getting caught up with work and office goings on after a very successful and informative Microsoft Tech Ed North America 2013 event in New Orleans. At Cisco, our Microsoft team is already ramped up for next week’s Microsoft Tech Ed Europe event and then we go at it once again in Houston at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference.  At each of these events Cisco is a Gold Sponsor and we will be showcasing our award winning Microsoft datacenter oriented products and solutions: UCS, Nexus, FlexPod, and VSPEX. Stop by our booths and grab one of our 2013 Microsoft Event Tour t-shirts!

Over the past 3 years we’ve had quite a run of good luck at Microsoft Tech Ed winning “Best of Tech Ed” awards in 2011, 2012, and 2013! Frankly this is due to the consistent, ongoing industry-leading innovation that Cisco’s R&D teams in our Datacenter Group are delivering to the market place. In 2011 our Cisco UCS B250 series server family was recognized with a Best of Tech Ed award. In 2012 UCS Manager was awarded the Breakthrough Technology Award at Tech Ed. Finally, just recently for 2013, our Nexus 1000V software switch for Hyper-V and our FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud solution won Best of Tech Ed accolades.

This innovation stream from Cisco has prepared us for the I.T. demands that we are all facing today – how to move to a more agile and efficient I.T. technology base as well as driving maximum budgetary efficiencies in OpEx and CapEx . Our Cisco Microsoft solutions are available today and can assist your organizations as they move to a Microsoft private cloud infrastructure and help you achieve positive ROI and TCO advantages.

Here’s a listing of our recent Tech Ed North America blogs – feel free to peruse them and learn more about our compute, network, storage, and architecture solutions for all things Microsoft:

Finally, to keep this information at hand, please bookmark our Cisco’s solutions for a Microsoft datacenter site at www.cisco.com/go/microsoft

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Cisco Innovation Three-peats and Doubles at Microsoft Tech Ed 2013!

June 5, 2013 at 5:29 pm PST

BOTE2013_Winner_ProdAwardsThis afternoon here in New Orleans at Microsoft’s Tech Ed 2013 North America event Cisco was honored with two Best of Tech Ed (BoTE) awards for our innovation and technology.

Our Nexus 1000V switch for Microsoft Hyper-V was awarded with a Best of Tech Ed award in the ‘Virtualization’ category. Our FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud reference architecture, developed jointly with our strategic partner NetApp, was recognized with the Best of Tech Ed award in the “Systems Management” category.

This is the third year in a row that Cisco innovation has been recognized by the Tech Ed judges and attendees – a rare three-peat! In 2011 our UCS B250 solution was recognized with a BOTE award in the hardware category. In 2012 our UCS Manager platform was recognized with the BOTE Breakthrough Technology award.

Nexus 1000V extends Cisco’s networking benefits to your Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V deployments. It offers a consistent operational model across your physical and virtual environments. As a distributed virtual switching platform, it provides advanced features and is tightly integrated with the Hyper-V Extensible Switch. Here’s some very good blog post links from Cisco Product Manager Gary Kinghorn to help you learn more on our Nexus 1000V for Microsoft Hyper-V Switch – Blog 1, Blog 2.

FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud is a Microsoft validated Fast Track 3.0 reference architecture for Microsoft private clouds based on Windows Server 2012 and System Center 2012. Developed and marketed with our strategic storage partner NetApp, FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud can help to jumpstart your IT. infrastructure projects for Windows Server 2012 with confidence and support. Here’s a Cisco Data Center guest blog on FlexPod from NetApp Product Manager Calvin Neih.

To learn more about Cisco’s award-winning Microsoft solutions and technologies please visit www.cisco.com/go/microsoft.

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