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Cisco UCS : When Opportunity Knocks

If you are managing an Itanium or SPARC based server architecture, you may be experiencing increasing maintenance costs, scarcity of administration resources, shrinking ISV support and unclear roadmaps from vendors like HP and Oracle/Sun.  You may not have thought there was a viable alternative, but imagine if you could unite computing, networking, and storage access resources with a management system designed to deliver the flexibility and agility needed to scale business operations.  

Cisco’s Unified Computing System was designed for the modern data center and has just expanded to include a portfolio of two-socket and four-socket blade and rack-optimized servers based on the new Intel® Xeon® processor E7 family. Check out the nine new world record performance benchmarks here. One of the new offerings is a two-socket Cisco UCS C260 server which can support up to 20 cores,  1 TB of memory and 16 SFF disk drives in a dense, 2U form factor. This is big-time compute, memory, and storage capability in an extremely small footprint. Up to 50 GB of memory per core for demanding enterprise applications, such as large-data-set and transaction-intensive databases, enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications, and decision-support systems.

Cisco UCS C260 M2 Rack-Mount Server Video Data Sheet

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What Cisco’s New Data Center Switching Announcements Mean for Service Providers

Cisco’s foundation for delivering the service provider Cloud is our Unified Service Delivery (USD) solution, featuring tightly integrated, data center and IP NGN technologies to deliver a virtualized end-to-end infrastructure for cloud services. We thought it would be useful to share some new capabilities that Cisco has added recently to the solution:

MPLS in the Data Center: To streamline the end to end operation across the data center and IP NGN,  Cisco announced, last week, that Nexus 7000 supports Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) for Layer 3 virtual private networks (VPNs). This allows MPLS to be deployed  at the data center core/aggregation layer  rather than terminating at the data center edge. This capability enables Service Providers to greatly simplify L3 segmentation, especially for multi-tenant cloud offerings, depending on their scale and service needs.

Another key to the delivery of a data center built for Cloud requirements of scale, virtualization and multi-tenancy has been the use of a Unified Fabric. Unified Fabric provides the flexibility of high performance, highly available networks to support the needs of both LAN and SAN on a consolidated fabric. Cisco’s Unified Fabric announcements last week bring new capabilities which extend our already robust offerings to further build out a Service Provider Cloud foundation.

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Bank Branches – “News of my death has been greatly exaggerated”

As I think back to the turn of the century, I remember banking analysts, as well as technology luminaries, were all boldly predicting the demise of not only banks in general, but of the bank branch in particular. Their mantra was, “turn bricks to clicks”. According to their view, consumers were going to abandon the branch in favor of alternative channels such as contact centers, ATMs, the Internet and, more recently, mobile devices. 

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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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Is the new data center fabric really a combination of Borg and big Brother? Answer on March 30th

I don’t know about you , but I want to be well prepared for the March 30th Cisco announcement
Listening to Cisco SVP Bill Brownell’s invitation, we can definitely expect some very interesting product news, but more importantly a new round of conversations about the right fabric-infrastructure, especially in the context of cloud computing.

That’s why we will have special guests such as John McCool, Soni Jiandani and Tim Gillis in addition of Forrester Research and IDC (see my previous blog)

So as I was willing to be well prepared, I found this interesting blog from Ivan about data center fabric architecture , which obviously grabbed also the attention of some of our smart  engineers

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