IBM’s DS8880: Sharpening the Focus on Mainframe Storage Needs

It’s been an odd half decade or so for the data storage industry. Despite the central roles that storage plays in IT products of every sort, storage vendors have been under pressure as traditional markets and opportunities continue to erode. Why so? For two reasons. First, because of the ongoing commoditization of storage components and hardware. Second, cloud players are using what are essentially loss-leading storage services to lure consumers and businesses, alike. What are storage vendors to do in such circumstances? There’s no single or simple fix, but one approach is to willingly embrace leading edge storage technologies, like NAND-based flash drives. Another involves closely tracking and developing solutions that address clients’ core business needs. IBM’s new DS8880 all-flash storage family highlights how the company is pursuing both these paths to its customers’ and its own benefit. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Cisco: On-Prem Storage 50% Better TCO Than Cloud

Cybersecurity may be Cisco’s current poster-child for revenue growth, but the company was also busy in the datacenter, with the launch of a storage-optimized server category, the UCS (Unified Computing System) S-Series. Designed to address the needs of data intensive workloads such as Big Data, and for deploying software-defined storage, object storage, and data protection solutions, Cisco is positioning its solution as ‘Data. Unstored.’ Less than 40% of stored enterprise data is ever used to create insight, but new applications such as video analytics, diagnostic imaging, streaming analytics, and machine learning demand and create data that is “un-stored” and actively processed in real time, states the company. It says traditional static IT infrastructure no longer works, while public cloud storage solutions can become expensive. The modular server, which features up to 600 terabytes of local storage in a 4-rack-unit (4RU) form factor, offers a number of benefits, including: -over 50% lower total cost of ownership (TCO) compared to public cloud (specifically Amazon Web Services); -reduces CapEx by up to 34%; -lowers ongoing management by up to 80%; -reduces cabling by up to 70%; -takes up to 60% less space; and, -consumes up to 59% less power. It’s easy to understand why Cisco might be interested in another server application. While server revenue declined 0.8% year over year, the public cloud services market is expected to grow 17.2% this year, to $208.6 billion, with the highest growth coming from cloud system infrastructure services (infrastructure as a service [IaaS]), which is projected to grow 42.8%. Data and business analytics (BDA) revenues will grow from $130.1 billion in 2016 to more than $203 billion in 2020, a compound annual growth rate of 11.7%. Amazon Web Services is the undisputed leader of public cloud services, with 45% of worldwide revenues, twice as much as Microsoft, Google and IBM combined. Together, the three competitors amount to less than 20% percent of infrastructure-as-a-service, or IaaS, revenues in Q3 2016. “There’s a perception that the cloud is not only faster, but also a lower cost versus on-premise and that’s just not the case,” said Todd Brannon, director of product marketing at Cisco. To house 420 TB of cloud storage for three years on Amazon Web Services’ Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) costs around $550,000, compared with about $250,000 to house the data on the on-premise S-Series, Cisco said. In a one-on-one with IT Trends & Analysis Brannon said the modular approach will “allow customers to rightsize the infrastructure for the workload.” It’s less than half the price of public cloud, and provides “a completely modular platform approach to storage-optimized service.” Cisco is promising very attractive TCOs...

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Better Business Protection – Fiduciary Class Data Recovery

Coauthored by Mark Peters and Jason Buffington So, it’s is safe to say that everyone “gets” backup – and pretty safe to say that most people “do” backup….to a greater or lesser extent and quality. But in the same way that regular stored data has no actual value (all that matters is when you actually reference and use the stored data, whereas simply having it recorded means nothing), even the world’s best backup is completely without value until it is needed; and at that point the crucial variable is recovery. To read the complete article, CLICK...

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Has Dell Got The Winning Ticket To The DT Sweepstakes?

A significantly larger and much deeper-in-debt Dell has packed up the inaugural Dell EMC World event — 8,000 attendees — and will hold DEW2 next May in Sin City (or as I call it, Lost Wages). With the just-completed acquisition of EMC, the new enterprise business, Dell EMC, is the largest enterprise storage and server vendor, but while storage capacity and server unit shipments continue to soar, prices and margins continue to erode. In addition to the IT industry’s largest debt load, Dell added significant resources in enterprise storage (EMC), virtualization (VMware), cloud (Virtustream, Pivotal and ECS), networking (SDN/NSX), all-in-one appliances (VCE) and security (RSA). The company also has investments in 150 companies for future technologies. It moved into top spot in server shipments for the most recent quarter, while EMC tied for first place with HPE ($1.6 billion each) in enterprise storage, with Dell in third place. In total, Dell claims leadership in 20 Gartner Magic Quadrants, but where is the growth and profitability going to come from? At DEW 1.0, the company called out digital transformation (DT or DX) as its future, while beefing up its present with a variety of cloud, appliance, analytics, security and flash announcements. “I say we’re going to be the trusted provider of essential infrastructure for the next industrial revolution,” said Michael Dell in his keynote. We’re facing “the sunrise of a new era… digital dawn” and the opportunities are huge, he added. Or as GE’s CIO put it in a video at the show: “You go to bed an industrial company and wake up as a software and analytics company.” Technology is undergoing sweeping changes as a result of cloud, analytics, software-defined everything, Internet of Things, mobile and social, and these technologies/applications are helping to drive the digital transformation impacting every aspect of our lives. Dell is now the biggest enterprise IT vendor offering the broadest portfolio of hardware, software and services, while its two closest competitors fall further behind. IBM continues to struggle with growth while HPE continues to struggle with its smaller-is-more-agile-and-therefore-more-relevant philosophy. “At Dell EMC World you’re getting a look at the next great technology company,” said Dell. David Goulden, President and Chief Commercial Officer, Dell EMC, believes the company has first-mover status in both the datacenter consolidation currently driving the enterprise IT market, and in the emerging digital transformation. He also believes Dell is best-positioned because of its size and breadth. “We don’t see many customers say I want more partners.” They want fewer, more capable IT partners, not a bunch of point product vendors. He calls Dell EMC and its DT focus “a game changer.” Other...

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Lenovo and Nimble Storage Join Forces

Today, Lenovo and Nimble Storage announced a joint partnership, furthering the capabilities and the reach of both companies. The near–term product offering that results from the partnership will be Lenovo’s ThinkAgile CX converged system available on October 28th, with Nimble providing the storage element. From a business perspective, the deal makes so much sense for both companies; the real question may be what took them so long. First, let’s start with the obvious benefits. Lenovo gets access to Nimble’s Predictive Flash technology for its converged offering, rounding out its storage portfolio and adding a larger scale converged offering to pair with its existing hyperconverged solutions from the partnership with Nutanix. Nimble Storage gains access to Lenovo’s substantial enterprise sales channel. While the immediate impact will likely be a boost in revenue for both companies, this partnership looks like it goes beyond the simple reselling of technology. To read the complete article, CLICK...

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