Rack & Rule: Dell Updates 4-Socket 4U R920 Server
Apr29

Rack & Rule: Dell Updates 4-Socket 4U R920 Server

With the x86-server market growing, but undergoing a lot of turbulence – converged/engineered systems, Lenovo taking over IBM’s System X business and HP getting closer to its expiry date (in November it will become two mini-HPs), Dell is looking to increase its second-place position with new rack servers targeted primarily at the fading but still significant Unix market (the non-x86 market presents a $9.1 billion addressable market in 2015). According to the company, the 4-socket 4U PowerEdge R930 is designed for such enterprise applications as in-memory databases, customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP). In addition to the R930, Dell also updated its PowerEdge VRTX and M1000e converged platforms, and introduced the PowerEdge FC830 and the M830 blade servers. We’re pushing double-digit performance gains on something that was already leading the world, said Brian Payne, Executive Director, Dell Server Solutions. The company launched the R930’s predecessor, the R920 high-end server, 14 months ago, targeted at workhorse applications such as ERP, e-commerce and a wide-range of databases, i.e. workloads that often aren’t virtualized over reliability concerns. He said Dell will continue to sell the R920 for the remainder of 2015: a number of web sites are already offering discounts up to 40% on the line. “There’s still a strong market opportunity for x86 servers and specifically 4-socket servers,” Payne told IT Trends & Analysis. One size will not fit all needs in the X86 server space, so Dell will continue provide a broad array of server solutions, he added. Two weeks ago Dell extended its PowerEdge FX converged architecture, which was initially introduced six months ago, positioned as yet another Cisco killer (this time the alleged victim is UCS, not Catalyst). In addition to announcing three new FX modules, it stated the x86-based platform can host 72% more virtual desktop users in 10X less space than UCS. According to the latest numbers from Gartner, server shipments grew 4.8% in Q4, while revenues increased 2.2%. Dell came in second behind HP (27.9% of revenue, up 1.5% year-over-year), with 17.3% ($2.42 billion), up a very respectable 16.9%. Not unexpectedly, the biggest swing came courtesy of the Lenovo purchase of IBM’s System X business, which saw the former soar 743.4% and the latter plummet 50.6%. Dell’s server numbers are impressive, but they mask another trend reshaping the server market, the emergence of engineered or integrated platforms (i.e. workload-specific systems like Oracle’s Exadata platform) and modular or converged systems (i.e. Cisco/VCE/HP), according to IDC. While still just a fraction of the overall server market, since IDC started tracking these segments in Q1 13, sales of engineered systems have grown by about a...

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VCE Announces New Converged Solutions

VCE announced new Foundation for Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud converged solutions that the company said are designed to further speed and simplify the deployment and management of hybrid cloud environments. The new offering extends the standardized, repeatable practices of the company’s unique “VCE Experience” by enabling the integration and support of additional technologies in VCE’s converged infrastructure environments. These include VMware NSX network virtualization, VMware vRealize management and orchestration software, and EMC ViPR software-defined storage. Customers can deploy one or all of these with the same VCE Experience benefits: seamless component-level updates, ongoing lifecycle assurance and unified support across all components, and full factory integration. VCE’s Foundation for Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud will be orderable in Q1 2015 through VCE and its network of solution provider partners. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Will Your Converged Infrastructure Reduce Operational Costs?

Some manufacturers have developed converged offerings that make the deployment of server compute, networking and storage resources more streamlined by pre-integrating each component into a rack enclosure. While this reduces deployment time, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the ongoing operational management of the solution will be any easier than when each device was separately sourced and integrated by the end-user. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Storage Switzerland Weekly...

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Dell Bets Big On Partners, Workload-Specific Appliances
Jun24

Dell Bets Big On Partners, Workload-Specific Appliances

Rather than just another set of my-products-are-better-than-your-products announcements, the latest additions to Dell’s enterprise lineup offer the possibility that maybe, just maybe, the privatization strategy may be paying off. It’s still way too early to come to any conclusions, but the new products — and associated partnerships — provide a number of possibilities that could pay big dividends for the PC giant that wants to be considered a serious contender to the IT heavyweights HP, IBM, Oracle and Cisco (with or without EMC/VMware). Dell made a number of announcements on Tuesday at its User Forum, including: four appliances and integrated systems (Dell Acceleration Appliance for Databases with Fusion-io flash memory, Dell Integrated Systems for Oracle 12c Database, Dell In-Memory Appliance for Cloudera Enterprise, and Dell XC Series of Web-scale Converged Appliances powered by Nutanix); and flash, hybrid and software-defined storage arrays. The market for technology enhancements — feeds and speeds — isn’t going away, but there is a growing group seeking engineered (integrated or converged) solutions, said Travis Vigil, Executive Director, Product Management, Dell Storage. “Our conversations with customers more and more are centered on workloads.” The momentum behind converged systems that bring together some combination of compute, storage, network, software and services is growing. Currently dominated by Cisco, HP and IBM, the converged infrastructure market is expected to be worth $17.8 billion by 2016, according to IDC. Resource-strapped organizations are looking for infrastructure management platforms that will unchain them from spending countless hours on mundane, administrative tasks to focus more on innovation, said IDC’s Matt Eastwood, Group VP and GM. “The market is primed and ready for an infrastructure management platform that is more intuitive and built for the needs of IT today—not the days gone by.” According to a new report from Gartner, this market is growing 50% annually. Its “Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems” report estimates the market for integrated systems, which includes single-vendor and multivendor converged infrastructures and hyper-converged infrastructures, will reach $6 billion this year. That’s what makes Dell’s appliances interesting. Like HP, IBM and Oracle’s bundled solutions, Dell’s workload-specific appliances are designed to ‘accelerate the value customers get from their technology by simplifying the deployment and management of large-scale enterprise applications, while at the same time ensuring best-in-class performance, response times, and insights to critical business data.’ The company recently introduced joint partner solutions, reference architectures and certifications with Oracle, SAP, Red Hat and Microsoft, and now the appliances for the likes of Oracle (12c), Cloudera (In-Memory) and Nutanix (SDS). And this is just the beginning, said Sam Greenblatt, CTO, Dell Enterprise Solutions Group (and former CTO at HP and CA). “This is the tip...

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VCE and the Standardization of IT Services (Part 1 of 2)

VCE, the converged systems vendor, hosted its first IT industry analyst conference last week in San Diego. In many ways, the event was about what you’d expect from a rapidly up and coming vendor, with presentations by and Q&A sessions with C-level executives (impressive and thoughtful), updates on current business (spectacular, with the company achieving a $1B+ annual run rate since launching in 2010), technology developments around its Vblock Systems (NDA, but watch this space), and a customer panel (candid and fascinating and, to insure a very open discussion, their identities are also NDA). For more information, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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