DTW18 & Connecting The DoTs (Part 2 of 3)

LAS VEGAS: As usual, there was a lot to see and do at this year’s Dell Technologies World, so I’ve selected a number of analysts’ comments to provide a better synopsis of the week’s events. First up is the digital transformation research, released in April, that set the stage for DTW18. “Companies today need to be agile to stay competitive and drive growth, and IT Transformation can be a major enabler of that,” said John McKnight, Vice President of Research, Enterprise Strategy Group. “It’s clear that IT Transformation is increasingly resonating with companies and that senior executives recognize how IT Transformation is pivotal to overall business strategy and competitiveness. While achieving transformation can be a major endeavor, our research shows ‘Transformed’ companies experience real business results, including being more likely to be ahead of the competition in bringing new products and services to market, making better, faster data-driven decisions than their competition, and exceeding their revenue goals.” Another research initiative resulted in last week’s Built to Adapt Benchmark, a ‘quantitative framework of indicators that gauges how well an organization builds and operates software’ from Pivotal. According to the survey of more than 1,600 of the world’s top organizations in six countries and across five industries, software release velocity does not meet business needs: -38% of organizations polled report deploying code on a continuous, hourly, or daily basis; -50% only deploy code on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis; -37% of apps were built, or have been refactored, to run in the cloud; and, -20% of software launches and upgrades were delayed due to defects. Patrick Moorhead, Founder and President of Moor Insights & Strategy, noted that the event started well, and built from there. ‘One of my biggest takeaways from Day 1 was that Dell Technologies is more connected than I have ever seen before … which is very powerful to customers and partners.’ He was equally positive about the various product announcements. ‘From machine learning to hyper-converged, to VDI, The Dell Technologies family continues to make progress, and the industry is better for it. Moor also credited Michael Dell for leading credit ‘Dell Technologies to be a much more interconnected and valuable company while maintaining best of breed components. This is very hard to do. There is still a tremendous amount of work to be done in enabling, optimizing and getting revenue from the software-defined datacenter and the future of work, but I am liking what I am seeing.’ Jason Bloomberg, President, Intellyx, believes that the event proved that the company had ‘largely succeeded in rationalizing a complex, diverse product line’ but that digital transformation posed a challenge...

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DWT18: The Premptive Prequel
Apr26

DWT18: The Premptive Prequel

In the increasingly cloud-first IT environment the misperception persists that “Infrastructure? We don’t need no stinkin’ infrastructure” is the ‘truth’. However, somewhere, somebody is supplying hardware, software and services to a datacenter to enable the cloud to function. Just ask cloud’s dynamic duo, Amazon and Google (and Microsoft), who helped more than double the amount spent on datacenters last year. While ODMs (original design manufacturers), whitebox servers and switches and public-domain software continue to proliferate, it comes down to three primary vendors in the broadline enterprise infrastructure business: IBM, HPE and Dell EMC. Big Blue looks like it has gotten it’s act together and is once again the profit-generating machine we’ve known forever (1Q18 $19.1 billion), while the post-Meg-HPE appears to be taking its new smaller-is-better philosophy and making a go of it (FY1Q18 $7.7 billion). Meanwhile the world’s largest private technology company, Dell EMC/Technologies, which is holding Dell Technologies World, its annual customer event, next week in Las Vegas, has continued to prosper (FY4Q18 $21.9 billion), despite running up a truly massive debt with its EMC acquisition (approximately $46 billion). The company borrowed billions to go private in 2013, and then a lot more billions ($52 billion?) to buy EMC n 2016, so while the amount still owed is impressive, the amounts paid off – around $10 billion – are equally impressive. The numbers were much less impressive for storage revenue ($13.6 billion), where HPE edged out Dell EMC for the fourth-quarter, 18.9% versus 18.0%. While IDC noted that “Investments on enterprise storage systems are increasing at a very healthy pace,” the original design manufacturers (ODMs) that sell directly to hyperscale datacenters recorded the biggest increase – 34.3% year over year – to just under $2.8 billion. Gartner puts overall Q4 server revenues up 25.7% year-over-year, on just an 8.8% YoY increase in shipments. Dell EMC won bragging rights, with top spot for the year (19.4%), up 39.9% in Q4, versus HPE (19.3%), on a respectable 5.5% increase in Q4. For the year, shipments were up 3.1%, while revenues jumped 10.4%. The latest numbers from IHS Markit show that Dell has supplanted HPE atop the datacenter server revenue heap. For the fourth quarter of 2017 Dell EMC accounted for17.9% of the market, worth $3.6 billion, just edging out white boxes (17.6%), and HPE (17.1%). The numbers are troubling for the non-ODMs, as white box shipped more units (24%), and while enterprises accounted for 44% in Q4 and 48% for the year, that segment is slowing down as cloud service providers (41%) are expected to overtake enterprises in 2019. Overall, Dell reported a 9% increase in quarterly revenues, and...

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IBM’s Strong Commitment to the NVMe Storage Revolution

IBM’s recent storage announcement covered a number of new and enhanced solutions across IBM’s Storage software and Storage systems portfolio, but for simplicity’s sake, my focus today is the significant support the company is throwing behind the revolution inspired by NVMe (nonvolatile memory express Note that the business storage market has changed dramatically in recent years with revolutions sparked by software-defined storage technologies and flash-based storage hardware, in both of which IBM has been a leader. To those two we can now add a storage connectivity revolution or NVMe. Although this revolution could be considered separate, the primary benefit is to increase the performance of flash storage (not hard disk storage). Therefore, it can also be considered a subset of the flash storage revolution. As it has demonstrated in past such events, IBM has a well-articulated strategy that includes necessary planning and R&D investments to deliver NVMe as a part of its storage environment in a reasonable, achievable time frame. However, before we see what the company is doing we need to understand the technology and why it is important. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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…Enterprise Storage in 2018 (Video)

Recently, I was able to get some time in front of a camera to discuss my predictions for enterprise storage in 2018. The video is below, but let me provide a brief spoiler with two of the top highlights. Flash continues its dominance with the rise of NVMe: I will talk more about NVMe as the year goes on, but in a nutshell NVMe unlocks the true potential of flash, and that potential is far more than just high performance. Data storage is hard: I am being overly simplistic here on purpose. This is not new, but here is the thing, all those technologies you are reading about, such as hyperconverged and cloud, all attempt to do the same thing: make storage management someone else’s problem. We have reached the point where manual storage management is too costly, and in 2018 automated infrastructure becomes king. To read the complete article, CLICK...

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HPE InfoSight Brings Autonomous DC (i.e. Skynet) Closer
Dec07

HPE InfoSight Brings Autonomous DC (i.e. Skynet) Closer

The upcoming termination of Meg Whitman’s reign is not the only Big Bang due out of Hewlett Packard Enterprise early next year: in January the drastically slimmed-down enterprise IT powerhouse will roll out a 3PAR-enabled artificial intelligence recommendation engine (InfoSight AIRE) that will take HPE closer to the autonomous datacenter, according to company officials. “Infosight is AI for the datacenter,” HPE’s Gavin Cohen, VP, Product and Solutions Marketing, Storage, told IT Trends & Analysis. “That’s something Nimble started building on from the start.” HPE announced the completion of its $1.2 billion acquisition of Nimble Storage in April, and while that significantly beefed up its flash and cloud storage assets, the company said it would be leveraging InfoSight across both its storage and server portfolios. Calling InfoSight the “crown jewels” of the Nimble acquisition, the AI power of the platform provides HPE and its partners with a big competitive advantage against any and all competitors, said Meg’s CEO successor-to-be (as of  February 1) HPE President Antonio Neri. “Nobody has this,” he said in a recent interview. The predictive analytics capabilities are sure to power dramatic reductions in storage total cost of ownership (TCO) for businesses of all sizes, he said. “It delivers the best performance with the best uptime and lowest TCO optimized for the specific workloads that run on the platform. The customer gets the best experience at the lowest cost.” Beyond storage are servers and ultimately the datacenter, and bringing AI and predictive analytics to the datacenter is not only necessary for protecting existing revenue streams, but essential to the autonomous datacenter. While we hopefully won’t get a Skynet, Terminator’s rise (and fall) of the machines, AI in the datacenter is coming quickly. By 2019, 40% of digital transformation initiatives will use AI services; by 2021, 75% of commercial enterprise apps will use AI; and the majority of adopters have seen quantified returns meeting or exceeding expectations. “AI is a positive force for change,” stated Mark Purdy, Managing Director-Economic Research, Accenture Research. “It has the potential to markedly increase growth rates and substantially raise economic output across industries, while helping organizations to more easily rotate to the new way of doing business.” A recent survey found that AI could boost average profitability rates by 38% and lead to an economic increase of $14 trillion by 2035. But all that remains in the future; today, we have AI-powered storage, or at least Nimble, and shortly, 3PAR, and the benefits are equally compelling. The AI and predictive analytics capabilities of InfoSight reduce the time spent troubleshooting issues by up to 85% and help to deliver greater than 99.9999% of guaranteed...

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