This month we’re marking a special milestone… there are now 10,000 UCS customers worldwide. The natural question becomes: what’s driving this phenomenal growth? How could this possibly have been predicted?
The best explanation of snowballing UCS adoption is found in customer results. Lest we forget, adopting a new platform in the data center is not a decision undertaken lightly in IT, but word has spread in the industry about the real world benefits UCS is delivering. More and more customers are taking a look and liking what they find. It’s an admittedly bold statement to say UCS has changed the economics of the datacenter, but I’m here to tell you that it’s not marketing hype. We’re hearing from customers who are reporting all-in savings in the range of 40% on the cost of computing. Travelport, for example, conducted a deep dive TCO analysis of their pre/post UCS world and here is how they are seeing their data center economics change over the next 5 years:
Power and Cooling
The savings stem from a variety of sources: lower capex as the platform efficiently scales, dramatically reduced administrator time, density/ power savings and reduced SW licensing costs as more workload lands on fewer servers. It’s cumulative and powerful. If you want a firsthand look at the TCO/ROI impact UCS can make in your data center, check out our calculator; with 5 minutes you can get a ballpark estimate.
Economics aside, UCS just seems to make people happy. I had a customer declare that his infrastructure was now “CTO proof.” He went on to explain that this meant the boss could deploy a server by himself without breaking anything. The infrastructure team let their CTO take a B-series blade straight out of the box, insert it into a chassis slot, and as the system identified and integrated the new resource into the available pool, they congratulated him on his first server deployment.
Beyond economic impact and increasing happiness in the data center, it doesn’t hurt that you can drop the clutch and put serious power to the ground in application performance. In December Cisco posted TPC benchmark results that surpassed existing records by as much as 32% in raw performance and 26% in price performance. This brings the total number of UCS world record results to 54 since introduction in 2009.
10,000 customers and growing, and it’s no wonder why.
‘Twas the week before Christmas, when all through IT, not a creature was stirring, not even a sysadmin?
Well, not quite. To support the global operations for a Fortune 100 company, the IT staff are always stirring things up at Cisco. But they may be just a little less busy this holiday season. Why? Because Cisco IT deployed a private cloud earlier this year, with a self-service portal and automated provisioning for infrastructure-as-a-service.
This means that employees throughout Cisco can provision and manage the infrastructure resources they need on their own, anytime and anywhere – so our sysadmins can take a break this holiday season (or more likely, they can focus on other IT priorities).
It seems like you can’t open an IT magazine these days without being bombarded by cloud, cloud, cloud. Going to tradeshows you see traditional vendors that have taken their existing solution packages and rebranded them as cloud. For Cisco partners and customers this can be confusing; especially since cloud comes in so many types/flavors: IaaS, SaaS, PaaS, and however people are positioning themselves. When I think of cloud I think it fundamentally boils down to an industrialization/simplification of IT. You focus and clearly define what you as a solution provider are providing, and by doing so, drive out the cost. Look at MS office for email etc. has literally thousands of options or ways to use it, but has a high cost/user/month. Gmail limits those options and by offering it free to everyone, it costs Google an ever decreasing fraction of a dollar/month. The economics are compelling. Customers like economics in their favor and partners get excited when customers want to make a transition.
On Dec 6th Cisco announced CloudVerse – an integrated set of capabilities combining Unified Data Center with Cloud Intelligent Network to deliver Cloud Applications and Services. The beauty of this position is that we aren’t telling our partners, “Thanks, we’ll take it from here!” We’re looking to them to offer this integrated Cisco vision to their customers.
“We’re putting our partners in the position to offer CloudVerse as a portfolio and new cloud capabilities.” As Ralph Nimmergood, VP of WW Channels at Cisco, stated in a CRN article published last week.
Partners are key to our cloud strategy and we’re excited to be on this journey with them.
I was at Gartner Summit in Las Vegas last week after missing the prior year. One thing that struck me this year was the increased dialogue around changes IT organizations need to make in their people and processes in order to prepare for both the convergence of IT infrastructure and the move to cloud. Now I know that analysts have talked about the area of IT operations management for some time but what was different was that customers were talking about it too.
At Cisco Services, we’ve had an increasing number of customers asking us to help them better align their people and process to take full advantage of Cisco’s innovative data center technologies. This growing interest in change was on full display at Gartner Summit, as both analysts and customers were discussing what change would mean to them.
So what are some of the things you should consider to get your IT organization best prepared for change? First, you need a leader committed to changing the way your IT runs. The CIO at Seattle Children’s Hospital, Drex DeFord, says he started by re-setting his organizational purpose, identifying patients as their customers, not employees. He then focused his strategy on removing complexity from his IT organization, not just on the technology side but in his people and processes as well, to allow IT better flexibility to understand and deliver against their customers’ expectations.
On December 6th Cisco announced CloudVerse, an integrated set of capabilities that enables customers to deliver cloud applications and services by uniquely combining the unified data center and cloud intelligent network. Key to this is Cisco’s Unified Data Center architecture which is comprised of three technology pillars: Unified Computing, Unified Fabric, and Unified Management.
The following provides a description of CloudVerse, focusing on new cloud management offerings and capabilities that enable customers to build and operate private, public or hybrid clouds… the world of many clouds:
Cisco CloudVerse uniquely combines the unified data center and cloud intelligent network as the platform to deliver cloud services. CloudVerse brings a unique set of advantages:
Assured Cloud Experience by uniquely combining the unified data center and cloud intelligent network
Agile, Dynamic and Efficient Cloud – delivering cost savings and time to market advantages, while simplifying the management and deployment of services
Accelerated Deployment through pre-tested designs like VMDC, through pre-tested ecosystem integrated solutions such as Flexpod and Vblock
Simplified management an operation through integrated management of compute, network and storage – for both the DC and the network
Cisco Unified Data Center provides a complete Data Center infrastructure architecture. It combines compute, storage, network, security and management into a fabric architecture that delivers outstanding performance for physical and virtualized business applications. Created to help companies evolve to cloud computing environments, Unified Data Center embeds automation and simplified operations at the Server, Network and Cloud-Services Layers.
Unified Managementprovides automation and lifecycle management frameworks to manage and simplify the deployment and operations of Network-Layer, Compute-Layer and Application/Cloud-Services-Layer within the Data Center. This includes Cisco UCS Manager, Cisco Network Services Manager, and Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud, as well as the integration with Cisco’s application, virtualization and storage ecosystem partners.
Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud features the newScale self-service portal and service catalog, which has been re-branded as Cisco Cloud Portal, and the Tidal automation software, which has been re-branded as the Cisco Process Orchestrator. Together, we’ve combined and integrated these software products into a powerful and intelligent management solution for enabling IT-as-a-Service.
Cisco Network Services Manager automates and provisions network infrastructure services using powerful abstracted models and policies that define and control the characteristics and behavior of the Cloud, and how Cloud services are accessed by end-users.
Cisco UCS Manager Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) Manager provides unified, embedded management of all software and hardware components in the Cisco UCS. It controls multiple chassis and manages resources for thousands of virtual machines.
To get more information on CloudVerse and Cisco Unified Data Center, please read the following blogs: