Data Center Convergence: Customer adoption

Recent trends like BYOD, Virtualization, Cloud and Video is driving unprecedented levels of data growth and demanding strong interdependency between the virtual server, network, and storage environments. Customers agree that in order to properly support consolidated, highly virtualized environments, organizations need improved, easy-to-manage server, network and storage, capable of cloud scale and performance.
The complexity and expense of maintaining dual storage and network interfaces, cabling, and switch ports becomes significant as the data centers grow.  Data center convergence helps to cut cost and increase efficiency by consolidating multi-protocol storage and LAN traffic onto a single, scalable, and intelligent network.
In recent ESG research conducted with North American networking professionals, 41% of survey respondents had already consolidated to a common Ethernet network, another 34% planned to do so in the next 24 months, and another 18% were interested in doing so.  ESG also published a Field Audit Report, which shows a clear uptake on convergence adoption by large and small customers from different vertical segments.

 

Convergence Survery

Highlights of the ESG finding ( full paper )

  •  A regional medical center implemented a converged Cisco network, compute, and management infrastructure, resulting in a much simpler and less expensive environment that is managed by only two IT staff members.
  • A U.S. subsidiary of global financial organization has achieved five-nines availability, lower costs, no business outages, and provisioning times of 20 minutes (instead of days) since implementing its Cisco unified networking and UCS infrastructure.
  • A large manufacturing organization uses Cisco converged networking for its high-performance computing environment, saving in energy, labor, and equipment costs, with higher availability and better performance, enabling a future full-cloud environment with consolidated management, reporting, and chargeback.

 Please take a look at the multi-part blog by Amit Jain.  In his blog (part 1) he explains how Boeing uses FCOE to consolidate IP and SAN traffic, as dual core technologies were adding complexities. 

  “…….we are utilizing the cores better, and increasing I/O with fewer cables and fewer switches,” says Dennis Kuehn Technical Fellow. “This consolidation means we use less floor space and power, as well as cut cooling costs.”    Full case study.

The second blog (part 2) featuring University of Siegen, Germany, where the converged infrastructure enabled the University to virtualize its real server estate while improving the speed of provisioning and scalability.

“This consolidation has not only saved data center space, but has also brought corresponding reductions in power and cooling costs,” says Matthias Trute of the server team. “We have increased the reliability and the redundancy of our infrastructure and decreased power usage by about 30 percent……….”     Full case study.

 There are lot more customers gaining efficiency and reducing cost by deploying cisco converged infrastructure.  Here is a list of few customer case studies, as you can see, customers in different verticals benefited using cisco datacenter solutions.

Engineering:   Geometric Achieves Efficiency with VDI 

Entertainment/Media:   Human Kinetics Optimizes Data Center, Improves Performance

Financial:  AmWINS Group Improves Scalability and Enhances Services

Government:      King County Creates Shared Infrastructure on FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud and Saves $700,000 Annually

 Healthcare:  Health Insurance Company Improves Service and Cuts Cost 

 Legal:  Legal Services Provider Improves Agility, Reduces Expenses (Case Study)

 Professional Services:    Case Study: Group Agrica Rises to Data Center Challenge

Service Provider:   HireRight Scales to Meet Real-Time Demand

Technology: Xerox: Process and Document Leader Improves Cloud Services Delivery 

To learn more about convergence, please listen to the recording of the recent Webinar, in which few of the Multi-hop FCoE case studies were highlighted. ( https://p.brighttalk.com/cisco/cudc/north_america/?commid=83559  ) And Stay tuned for more !

 For more info:  www.cisco.com/go/mds
Tony Antony
Cisco DC Products and solutions Marketing
Sr Marketing Manager DC Solutions


Who Leads the Enterprise Networking and Communication Market?

[Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Matthias Machowinski, Directing Analyst, Enterprise Networks and Video at Infonetics.]

Infonetics recently published our Enterprise Networking and Communication Vendor Leadership Scorecard, our annual look at the top vendors in this space and their strengths and weaknesses. Enterprise networking and communication infrastructure is a critical component of the day-to-day opherations of any organization—it connects people, devices, and IT systems and allows them to communicate with each other securely. This market consists of 3 major sub-segments:

  • Networking: Equipment used to build enterprise networks, such as switches, routers, and WLAN
  • Communication: Equipment and software that provides real-time enterprise voice and video communication, such as IP PBX, videoconferencing rooms, and UC software
  • Security: Products that provide security for networks and network-connected devices, such as firewalls, IDS/IPS, and content security appliances

Well over 100 vendors vie for a piece of this $50B market, but only a dozen capture more than 1% market share each. We evaluated the 8 largest vendors with diversified product offerings—Alcatel-Lucent, Avaya, Brocade, Cisco, Juniper, HP, NEC, and Siemens—using important vendor selection criteria and markers of success, including:

  • Service and support
  • Product reliability
  • Technology innovation
  • Solution breadth
  • Financial stability
  • Market share
  • Market share momentum

To eliminate subjective scoring, we used a data-driven model that incorporates actual vendor performance and direct feedback from buyers to objectively determine vendors’ positions in the marketplace.  So what did we find?

Top Enterprise Networking and Communication Equipment Vendors: Overall Scores

Matthias Machowinski Guest Blog Overall Scores

 

Our evaluation showed that Cisco has the highest score overall, capturing perfect or near-perfect scores in 6 of the 7 criteria. Cisco doesn’t have much room to grow its overall score but still managed to do so since our previous evaluation last year, thanks to improving market share momentum. Specifically, we found that:

  • Cisco is the only vendor in our scorecard to offer products in all enterprise networking and communication segments, which gives Cisco the capability to offer highly integrated solutions across multiple IT and networking needs.
  • Cisco is one of the top global brands and has very strong brand recognition. In the thousands of end-user interviews we’ve conducted over the years, Cisco consistently makes it to the top of buyers’ short lists and gets strong marks on top purchase criteria such as product reliability and service/support. The common refrain from buyers is that they love Cisco, and the only thing they would love even more is paying a little less. But that usually doesn’t stop them from purchasing Cisco gear.
  • Cisco has extremely sound financials, giving Cisco multiple ways to invest in its business and weather financial distress, should it ever strike.
  • Cisco has the highest market share, capturing ~45% of total enterprise networking and communication revenue in calendar year 2012, due to strong execution and the breadth of its product portfolio.
  • Cisco’s only weakness is its market share momentum, where it comes in 6th place—actually an improvement over last place the previous year. Given Cisco’s very high level of market share (~45% of revenue), it’s simply mathematically challenging to gain much more share but fairly easy to lose it; thus, Cisco is likely to always struggle on market share momentum.

To see the full results of our research, download your free copy of Enterprise Networking and Communication Vendor Leadership Scorecard.

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Emerging Markets Are Upbeat on Cloud

The sweeping changes driven by cloud and the Internet of Everything (IoE) are upending traditional models of IT consumption in dramatic ways.

In order to shed new light on these trends and their impact on IT, Cisco® Consulting Services (CCS), in partnership with Intel®, conducted a wide-ranging study. We explored the powerful changes affecting IT consumption at all stages — how businesses plan, procure, deploy, operate, and govern IT services. We also focused on the ways in which lines of business (LOB) — human resources, sales, and other areas that are end users of IT — are altering overall IT consumption.

Some of our most striking findings related to the differences in perception between developed and emerging markets. The “Impact of Cloud on IT Consumption Models” study surveyed 4,226 IT leaders in 18 industries across nine key economies during March and April 2013. For our purposes, “emerging markets” included Brazil, China, India, Mexico, and Russia,; developed markets were represented by Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, and the United States.

In all markets, cloud is overwhelmingly seen as a good thing. Despite the challenges and added complexity that cloud brings to IT organizations,
a strong majority feels that the business upsides outweigh the negatives. For example, 83 percent of respondents believe that cloud will positively impact IT planning. In addition, 81 percent see a positive impact from cloud on “IT funding and procurement.” Similar percentages apply across all other IT consumption lifecycle stages.

But a key difference between emerging and developed markets becomes apparent when we explore some of the core drivers for cloud. In developed economies, the number-one business driver for cloud is lowering costs. While cloud is seen as a mechanism 
for cost takeout, it also affords the ability to “pay as you grow” and achieve more predictable cost controls.

In general, however, the emerging economies featured in our study are more upbeat about cloud and the impact it can drive for their companies. They are investing heavily in what they see as the transformational potential of cloud. For these emerging economies, the number-one cloud adoption driver is increasing business productivity and agility.

IT leaders in our survey believe they will retain much of the oversight and authority that has characterized their relationship to the business in recent years — with generally higher percentages in emerging markets. Fifty-six percent globally saw IT becoming more centralized (in Asia Pacific, this rose to 79 percent), rather than more fragmented as LOBs’ role in IT consumption grows. The belief is that greater centralization will yield greater efficiencies and consistency of policy, user experience, etc., than is afforded by a more distributed IT function (i.e., in which LOBs have their “own IT group.”) Fifty- seven percent of respondents overall saw the size of the IT organization and its headcount increasing. In Asia Pacific, this was 80 percent; in Latin America, 69 percent.

Yet respondents in emerging markets were nearly twice as likely to project an increase in the size of their IT organization than were their counterparts in Europe and North America, where just four in ten foresaw a cloud-driven increase in headcount.

Given the attitudes registered toward the issues of centralization and organizational size, respondents in Europe and North America are clearly more reticent about what cloud will mean for the resources they oversee than are their peers in emerging markets.

These finding are consistent with other recent Cisco studies, including “The Financial Impact of BYOD” and the “IoE Value Index,” both of which have uncovered a high level of interest in the potential for innovative IT use among respondents from emerging markets. This may also reflect the tendency of emerging markets to “leapfrog” to new technologies, skipping, for example, the legacy landline architectures that still predominate in some developed nations.

In addition, the overall optimism of our survey respondents in emerging markets indicates a greenfield for cloud adoption in those markets.

 

To download the full report, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/web/about/ac79/docs/re/IT-Consumption_PoV/

To navigate the report findings by region, please visit:  http://share.cisco.com/brightfuture/

For more information on the Internet of Everything, please visit: http://www.internetofeverything.com

For more information on the Cisco cloud strategy, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/go/cloudstrategy

For more information about Intel in cloud computing, please visit: http://www.intel.com/cloud

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Emerging Markets Are Upbeat on Cloud

The sweeping changes driven by cloud and the Internet of Everything (IoE) are upending traditional models of IT consumption in dramatic ways.

In order to shed new light on these trends and their impact on IT, Cisco® Consulting Services (CCS), in partnership with Intel®, conducted a wide-ranging study. We explored the powerful changes affecting IT consumption at all stages — how businesses plan, procure, deploy, operate, and govern IT services. We also focused on the ways in which lines of business (LOB) — human resources, sales, and other areas that are end users of IT — are altering overall IT consumption.

Some of our most striking findings related to the differences in perception between developed and emerging markets. The “Impact of Cloud on IT Consumption Models” study surveyed 4,226 IT leaders in 18 industries across nine key economies during March and April 2013. For our purposes, “emerging markets” included Brazil, China, India, Mexico, and Russia,; developed markets were represented by Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, and the United States.

In all markets, cloud is overwhelmingly seen as a good thing. Despite the challenges and added complexity that cloud brings to IT organizations,
a strong majority feels that the business upsides outweigh the negatives. For example, 83 percent of respondents believe that cloud will positively impact IT planning. In addition, 81 percent see a positive impact from cloud on “IT funding and procurement.” Similar percentages apply across all other IT consumption lifecycle stages.

But a key difference between emerging and developed markets becomes apparent when we explore some of the core drivers for cloud. In developed economies, the number-one business driver for cloud is lowering costs. While cloud is seen as a mechanism 
for cost takeout, it also affords the ability to “pay as you grow” and achieve more predictable cost controls.

In general, however, the emerging economies featured in our study are more upbeat about cloud and the impact it can drive for their companies. They are investing heavily in what they see as the transformational potential of cloud. For these emerging economies, the number-one cloud adoption driver is increasing business productivity and agility.

IT leaders in our survey believe they will retain much of the oversight and authority that has characterized their relationship to the business in recent years — with generally higher percentages in emerging markets. Fifty-six percent globally saw IT becoming more centralized (in Asia Pacific, this rose to 79 percent), rather than more fragmented as LOBs’ role in IT consumption grows. The belief is that greater centralization will yield greater efficiencies and consistency of policy, user experience, etc., than is afforded by a more distributed IT function (i.e., in which LOBs have their “own IT group.”) Fifty- seven percent of respondents overall saw the size of the IT organization and its headcount increasing. In Asia Pacific, this was 80 percent; in Latin America, 69 percent.

Yet respondents in emerging markets were nearly twice as likely to project an increase in the size of their IT organization than were their counterparts in Europe and North America, where just four in ten foresaw a cloud-driven increase in headcount.

Given the attitudes registered toward the issues of centralization and organizational size, respondents in Europe and North America are clearly more reticent about what cloud will mean for the resources they oversee than are their peers in emerging markets.

These finding are consistent with other recent Cisco studies, including “The Financial Impact of BYOD” and the “IoE Value Index,” both of which have uncovered a high level of interest in the potential for innovative IT use among respondents from emerging markets. This may also reflect the tendency of emerging markets to “leapfrog” to new technologies, skipping, for example, the legacy landline architectures that still predominate in some developed nations.

In addition, the overall optimism of our survey respondents in emerging markets indicates a greenfield for cloud adoption in those markets.

 

To download the full report, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/web/about/ac79/docs/re/IT-Consumption_PoV/

To navigate the report findings by region, please visit:  http://share.cisco.com/brightfuture/

For more information on the Internet of Everything, please visit: http://www.internetofeverything.com

For more information on the Cisco cloud strategy, please visit: http://www.cisco.com/go/cloudstrategy

For more information about Intel in cloud computing, please visit: http://www.intel.com/cloud

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Cisco UCS vRack on Full Display at PASS Summit

Cisco is proud to be a Platinum sponsor and exhibitor at PASS Summit this year. If you aren’t familiar with PASS Summit, it “is the world’s largest, most-focused, and most-intensive conference for Microsoft SQL Server and BI professionals.”

Gary Serda has done an excellent job in detailing what the Cisco UCS team will be sharing with attendees in his blog post Guide to Cisco at the PASS Summit, so I wanted to highlight our 3D, interactive vRack of our Unified Computing System which is always a highlight at trade shows and will be on display at PASS Summit.

 

Stop by booth #300 to learn why you should be using UCS for all your server needs.

 

To learn more about Microsoft solutions on Cisco UCS, go to http://www.cisco.com/go/microsoft

To learn how Cisco UCS is changing the economics of the data center, see my previous blog post.

For the latest news on Cisco Data Center please follow us on Twitter at @ciscodc.

Follow @HighTechBill

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Design Zone Webinar: Unlock More Value from Big Data with Cisco UCS

Big Data Webinar Header

Design Zone Webinar for Big Data

 

 

Big Data Webinar TimeBig Data has become mainstream as businesses realize its benefits, including improved operation efficiency, better customer experience, and more accurate predictions. However, companies are often challenged by the complexities of traditional server solutions.

In this webinar, learn how to unlock the value of Big Data with the Cisco Unified Computing System (Cisco UCS). Cisco UCS delivers the performance, capacity, management simplicity, and scale that businesses need to increase agility, speed time to value, and deliver a competitive advantage to increase revenue.

Our one-hour technical presentations will demonstrate how to build elements of the Cisco Unified Data Center platform. We will show you how to design your infrastructure and management for traditional and virtualized environments. You’ll also learn about available services to help deliver it.

 

To attend, please click the “ATTEND” link below:

Big Data Webinar Registration

 

Hope you can join us and let me know if you have any comments or questions, or via twitter at @CicconeScott.

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Reminder – Join Us Live Today From InteropNY

_MG_8189

Yesterday Cisco announced a couple of new technologies — a new 802.11ac Access Point, a new converged wired+wireless Catalyst Switch, and more — but the announcement that generate

d quite a bit of buzz beyond networking circles was a new partnership with Facebook.  This solution —  CMX for Facebook Wi-Fi – is part of a broader announcement of new partnerships around the Connected Mobile Experiences ecosystem.

The Cisco Partner Ecosystem enables organizations to customize applications and services.  This customization can be applied to deliver location-aware guest access, device-based services, browser-based services, customized mobile applications, online and onsite analytics, social analytics, and advertisements.

CMX for Facebook Wi-Fi is exciting as it allows businesses to offer free wi-fi to customers and makes it easy for those customers to check in.  If you’re at a cafe, for example, you don’t need to stand in line at the register just to ask for a password — you just log in.   From an analytics perspective businesses get aggregate data on their customer base.  This i


This afternoon (1pm EDT, 10am PDT) we’re having a
lunch&learn here at Interop to discuss — in detail — how businesses can use this new technology to enhance  end-user experiences and engagements.  The discussion will be a Q&A panel led by Craig Mathias, principal analyst from the FarPoint Group, and will cover the new application and network possibilities for Cisco customers and partners.  Join us!ncludes demographics data from users who Check In, such as age, gender, city (origin), and language.

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AARNet crosses the Nullabor on the Great Australian Bright Coast with Cisco

Australia is one of the most sparsely populated countries on Earth. Many of its major cities are separated by expansive stretches of inhospitable desert. Technology, however, is no respector of barriers, natural or man-made and an initiative across Australia from Cisco and Australia’s Academic and Research Network (AARNet) proves that point. Yesterday, Cisco and AARNet announced the deployment of one of the longest unregenerated high performance optical networks in the world.

Starting in Adelaide and travelling to Perth (the second most isolated major city in the world) and continuing on to the Murchison Radio-Astronomy Observatory (MRO) in remote Western Australia, the newly deployed network will stretch 3500 km (about 2200 mi). The capacity of the network is scalable to 8Tbps over the 2700 km stretch of fibre from Adelaide to Perth, with 80 channels each providing speeds of 100 Gigabits per second (Gbps). Transmission speeds of 100Gbps have also been consistent during testing on the 800 km stretch of fibre from Perth to the MRO.

Those numbers sound impressive, but what’s really important is what they mean: the network will underpin Australia’s element of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) global research project, which is the largest and most capable radio telescope ever constructed. Cisco’s roll out of optical fibre connecting Adelaide and Perth to the MRO in the middle of the Australian outback is critical for enabling this participation, which is extremely data intensive.

The complexity of rolling out a fibre-optic network across such vast distances, where the terrain is harsh, cannot be understated. The challenge was made more difficult by the necessity to work with multiple types of optical fibre, including G.652, G.655 and G.652ULL added complexity to the challenge of vast distance. Cisco solved the challenge using a mix of Raman and EDFA amplification along with coherent optical modulation techniques.

This is just the latest announcement in what has been a long and valued partnership between Cisco and AARNet. Cisco has helped AARNet put together a fibre optic network in 2011, which is world-class and has proven pivotal in Australia becoming one of the two (South Africa being the other) major contributors to the SKA. Cisco has also teamed with AARNet in the roll out TelePresence in major Australian universities in order to help them collaborate with other educational institutions in Australia and overseas.

Cisco is looking forward to continuing to help AARNet remain one of the most highly esteemed and technologically advanced educational networks in the world.


Who’s deploying Multi-Hop FCoE? – Part II

Continuing the blog series (Part-I) on the production deployment designs and the real-world benefits of Multi-Hop FCoE infrastructure, this blog features University of Siegen, based in Germany.

siegenBefore delving into the details, a bit of background — The University of Siegen is a modern educational institution with a strong international profile. Its 17,500 students and 1700 staff are based in eight locations around the town of Siegen in Germany, although more than 11 percent of students come from other countries. The BYOD, e-learning initiatives and other research applications were putting the university’s IT environment under pressure. So, the University was looking to optimize IT services for educational and operational efficiency and as well to introduce the latest technology for future-proofing their Data Center. 

Using the Cisco “wire-once, enable anywhere” design philosophy, the University connected the old storage environment, which is based on Fibre Channel, with the new FCoE domain. Cisco UCS server is connected to the Director-Class Cisco Nexus 7000 platform, which in turn is connected via Multi-hop FCoE to Cisco MDS 9000 SAN Director. The newer FCoE Storage array is connected directly to Nexus 7000 for the End-to-End FCoE connectivity.

Siegen-Dep

The benefits to using Cisco Unified Fabric infrastructure were quite significant as it enabled the University to virtualize its real server estate while improving the speed of provisioning and scalability. Individual university departments now have the power to provision and configure their own virtual machines within hours rather than weeks. The ability, to allow virtualized servers to be linked to both FCoE storage as well as the old FC world, provided a smooth migration path for the university.  The power usage reduced by about 30%. The Virtual Device Context (VDC) technology enabled one Nexus 7000 physical switch to work as four virtualized switches, maintaining separate logical entities while delivering a 4:1 space-saving ratio in the racks.

“This is a very good example for how old and new things can be brought together successfully. This consolidation has not only saved data center space, but has also brought corresponding reductions in power and cooling costs. We have increased the reliability and the redundancy of our infrastructure and decreased power usage by about 30 percent”

Cisco MDS, with Multi-Hop FCoE functionality, is an advanced platform that has been working securely for a long time and really does the job.”

“It’s quite impressive if you look at the server cabinets. You don’t see that many cables because of FCoE and virtualization. Management has been simplified, and data center vendors have been reduced from ten to two”

– Networking, Server Team 

AwardThis Data Center design also received an award from Future Thinking.  Moreover, this design will also set the stage for private cloud computing, which is planned for in the coming 12 months, and thus enabled the customer to future-proof their Data Center!

More details can be found in the externally published case study. Stay tuned for the information on the other customers in the subsequent blogs…

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