IBM Advances Cluster Virtualization…

On the classic Groucho Marx quiz show You Bet Your Life if a contestant accidently said the “secret word” of the day, he or she would win a prize. There’s no prize included in this commentary, but the secret word of the day is virtualization, especially as it relates to IBM’s new HPC and AI solutions. IBM defines virtualization as “A technology that makes a set of shared resources appear to each workload as if they were dedicated only to it.” IT is very familiar with this concept, what with operating system-level virtualization, server virtualization, network virtualization, and storage virtualization all continuing to permeate more and more through computing infrastructures and the collective consciousness. So, it should come as no surprise that IBM is advancing the concept of cluster virtualization in its latest announcement, tying it closely to cloud and cognitive computing. IBM’s cluster virtualization initiative combines products from its Spectrum Computing family, namely Spectrum LSF, Spectrum Symphony, and Spectrum Conductor, along with overall cluster virtualization software (Spectrum Cluster Foundation) to manage the whole process. And that includes the storage that is delivered through IBM Spectrum Scale, another member of the IBM Spectrum Storage family. The goal of this approach is to automate the self-service provisioning of multiple heterogeneous high-performance computing (HPC) and analytics (AI and big data) clusters on a shared secure multi-tenant compute and storage infrastructure. Doing so delivers multiple benefits to numerous technical computing end users, including data scientists and HPC professionals. The announcement focuses on these products: IBM Spectrum LSF, IBM Spectrum Conductor, and IBM Spectrum Scale. For more information, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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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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The gold standard for data protection keeps evolving

Yes, of course, data protection has to evolve to keep up with how production platforms are evolving, but I would offer that the presumptive ‘gold standard’ for what is the norm for those on the front lines of proactive data protection is evolving in at least three different directions at the same time. Here is a 3-minute video on what we are seeing and what you should be thinking about as the evolutions continue. To read the complete article, CLICK...

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Veeam: nice guys still finish first

I just left Veeam’s analyst summit (in Napa, which is fantastic). Normally I don’t do analyst days (as we have legitimately smart analysts who do them), but I wanted to know more about this company who successfully latched on to the virtualization movement and never let go. Plus, did I mention it was in Napa? Suffice it to say that Veeam is one of those “once in 25 years” success stories. They use their own money, grow at an insane pace, print cash, and have become the envy of not only the “availability” world, but anyone in this generation of tech. And they do everything “wrong”. They are truly a distributed organization — Russia; Switzerland; and Columbus, Ohio. Yes, Columbus Ohio. Their founder and CEO (until today), Ratmir, is impossible not to like. They took on what is perhaps the most entrenched sector in all of IT (data protection), and dominated against all odds. They don’t have to answer to anyone — because they use their own money. They don’t have to rush to go public, for the same reason. They can afford to do things right. To read the complete article, CLICK...

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…When FUD Goes Off the Rails

The latest FUD-ish murmurings I’ve been hearing relate to the impact of Dell’s planned acquisition of EMC on the company’s VCE division and converged systems. For those unfamiliar with VCE, it was originally launched in 2009 and organized as an unconventional joint partnership between VMware, Cisco and EMC, along with a minority share held by Intel. The company’s first and primary solutions were Vblocks, highly integrated solutions based on VMware virtualization technologies, Cisco’s UCS servers and Nexus switches and EMC storage. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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