Cloud Computing

Cisco Tops 10,000 Unified Computing System Customers

Cisco announced that in just over two years its new Cisco Unified Computing System(TM), (Cisco UCS(TM)) which integrates compute, networking, management and virtualization, has captured the attention of data center managers and CIOs alike — over 10,000 customers worldwide, including 3,000 in Europe, have deployed UCS. Many industry observers were skeptical that a new computing technology could take hold in this highly competitive market, but the cost and business benefits proved compelling across all industries and all workloads. Since it began shipping in July 2009, UCS has captured 53 industry benchmark performance world records, and garnered a dozen industry awards for innovation.

According to a recent Servers and Virtualization Study by TheInfoPro(TM), Cisco took the lead among server vendors in vision, technical innovation, product performance, and sales force. Cisco was named by 33 percent as “the most exciting server vendor,” eight percentage points ahead of the second placed vendor. *

The 2011 Cisco Cloud Index forecasts that cloud computing is transforming business: over 50 percent of computing workloads in data centers are predicted to be cloud-based by 2014, and global cloud traffic will grow over 12 times by 2015, to 1.6 zettabytes per year — the equivalent of over four days of business-class video for every person on earth. This explosive cloud growth requires the advanced data center capabilities provided by UCS to support end-to-end cloud application delivery.

Designed from the ground up with a “clean slate” approach, Cisco UCS is an integrated system, designed to optimize compute, networking, storage access, virtualization and management. UCS tapped into a powerful market demand for a new approach to computing, enabling IT organizations to unleash new business models with its innovative, integrated architecture. Customers are able to reduce the time to deploy new applications, improve business agility and reduce costs. UCS is the first fabric computing platform that combines industry-standard, x86-architecture servers with networking and storage access into an integrated system. Cisco works with industry-leading infrastructure and software vendors, including BMC, CA, Citrix, EMC, Hitachi Data System, Microsoft, NetApp, Oracle, Red Hat, SAP, VMware to provide pre-tested, end-to-end solutions.

Cisco UCS Customers Worldwide Gain Business Benefits Monsanto

Monsanto, a leading global provider of agricultural technology that helps farmers produce more crops using fewer resources, initially deployed UCS to host virtualization for its SAP applications with VMware, which allowed them to reduce 160 physical application servers to just 12 UCS blades hosting 200 SAP Virtual Machines. Monsanto’s data center refresh project further expanded the UCS footprint to support additional applications such as Oracle and Weblogic; with 80 UCS blades now supporting 1600 Virtual machines and plans for continued expansion. “By taking advantage of UCS’s integrated fabric capabilities and unique service profiles we’ve reduced power by 35 kilowatts, eliminated hundreds of LAN cables and SAN ports, and created a highly available and agile application environment to support virtualization and especially Virtual Machine mobility,” said Todd Eyrick, business alignment and strategy lead, Global Infrastructure, Monsanto. “UCS Service Profiles, which allow us to assign characteristics for both physical and virtual services using a software template, are key to achieving our goal in delivering an IaaS model.”

Euronet Worldwide Euronet Worldwide, an industry leader and provider of highly secure electronic financial transaction solutions, established the first independent ATM network in Central and Eastern Europe. Euronet Worldwide processes more than $50 billion in ATM, prepaid and money transfer payments for more than 115 financial institutions, 200 mobile operators, 320,000 retailer and agent locations, and millions of individual consumers in 46 countries. With the help of S&T Consulting Hungary, Euronet deployed Cisco UCS combined with NetApp and VMware technologies in a joint solution for its central data center located in Hungary, which supports transaction processing for Euronet subsidiaries in 26 countries throughout Central and Eastern Europe. “We needed a cloud infrastructure that could help us respond quickly to constantly changing business needs and scale capacity on demand,” said Suresh Nandihalli, chief operating officer, Euronet EFT Europe. “This deeply integrated solution gives us a lower total cost of ownership, better return on investment, and a much more agile infrastructure to support our business applications and help us address business challenges and tasks.”

The Chinese University of Hong Kong The Chinese University of Hong Kong, a top university in Hong Kong and Asia, centralized and virtualized its information technology resources by deploying Cisco Unified Data Center architecture with Cisco Unified Computing System and Nexus switches to streamline data center management, provision computer resources more rapidly, and enhance computing power for academic users, especially for medical and scientific research. “Our users have high expectations of our data center infrastructure — they want faster and more flexible provisioning as well as lower cost,” said Philip Leung, Director of Information Technology Services, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. “It’s very important to select a solution which can integrate all the main components including the network, the servers, the storage and the backup. Reliability, scalability, ease of automation and tight integration were the main criteria when we selected the Cisco data centre infrastructure platform.”

AudienceView Ticketing With 140 clients representing over 500 venues in Europe, Asia, Australia, and the Americas, AudienceView Ticketing is a global provider for white-label, web-based ticketing solutions to theatres, arenas, stadiums, and arts organizations. AudienceView deployed a compact and efficient turnkey solution comprised of Cisco UCS, EMC storage and virtualization with VMware vSphere Hypervisor to support its cloud computing environment. “Our main goal as an organization is growth, and now we have a standard building block for provisioning our data centers as we grow,” said Gopi Balasingam, Vice President of Operations, AudienceView Ticketing. “UCS accelerates our time-to-market significantly — we used to spend up to a day and a half provisioning a new server, but now we can do it in 60 minutes — that business agility will translate into huge savings as we open up new data centers in the Asia-Pacific region. We also reduced operating costs by 25 percent because UCS requires less peripheral hardware.”

Boston University Medical Center “UCS provides a powerful and flexible solution for our research environment — instead of dedicating each server to a specific application, we can use UCS service profiles to change the blades to support a new application in minutes,” said Dr. John Meyers, technology director at Boston University Medical Center’s Department of Medicine. “We’ve also used UCS to provision highly secure file transfer protocol (FTP) to share enormous quantities of data with other research institutions to facilitate collaboration on medical research.”

ISV Partner Ecosystem for UCS Independent software vendors are developing to the open Cisco UCS application programming interface (API), with over 10,000 applications supported today. UCS is an ideal platform for agile, on-demand delivery of IT resources: the UCS API enables cloud management software to quickly reconfigure computing, network, and storage access functions as business needs change.

UCS Supports Green Data Centers and Energy Efficiency IT managers can achieve more energy efficient data centers with the Cisco Unified Computing System — it uses one-half the components, and requires less cabling and power/cooling than legacy servers. Over 30 billion kilowatt hours of energy per year could be saved by replacing aging traditional servers and support infrastructure through unified computing and virtualization in the data center. This equals the energy output of 15 U.S. coal-fired electric plants and 35 million tons of CO2.

Cisco Data Center Architecture Cisco’s data center architecture is comprised of Unified Computing, Unified Fabric, and Unified Management. This integrated architecture, the Cisco Unified Data Center, provides faster provisioning of new services, reduces total cost of ownership and transforms how IT supports business goals, creating a foundation for next generation data centers whether they are bare-metal, highly virtualized or cloud computing environments.

Data Center

NCR Recognized by Cisco as Data Center Unified Computing Authorized Technology Provider in MEA

NCR Corporation announced today that it has achieved Data Center Unified Computing Authorized Technology Provider (ATP) status from Cisco. This designation recognizes NCR as having fulfilled the training and program prerequisites to sell, deploy and support the Cisco Unified Computing System.

Nadine Routhier, vice president of Telecom and Technology, NCR commented, “IT requirements are changing dramatically making the underlying network ever more critical. With the breadth and depth of our expertise in delivering Cisco Unified Computing Systems, NCR is able to help meet significant market demand for cloud computing services from telecom carriers and enterprises across the fast growth MEA region.”

The Cisco Unified Computing System unites network, computational, storage access and virtualization resources in a single energy-efficient system that can reduce the costs and complexity of information technology (IT) infrastructure. It combines a “wire once” unified fabric with an industry-standard computing platform to optimize virtualization, reduce the data center’s total overall cost and provide dynamic resource provisioning for businesses that are becoming increasingly collaborative, mobile and distributed.

Organizations today are migrating their enterprise application processing to the cloud without having to concern themselves any longer with idle CPUs or unused drive space. By opting to use a cloud service provider, they can access services on a “pay-as-you-go” basis, making this a highly scalable and cost-effective IT strategy.

“Taking advantage of an architectural shift in the data center, Cisco’s new computing model can help customers transform the data center into a dynamic IT environment with the power to increase productivity, improve efficiency and drive virtualization to an entirely new level,” said John Growdon, director, Worldwide Channels Go-to-Market Group at Cisco. “As a Cisco Data Center Unified Computing Authorized Technology Provider, NCR is a member of an elite ecosystem of industry leaders working with Cisco to stimulate technology innovation, augment service delivery and accelerate the market adoption of unified computing.”

To qualify as a Cisco Data Center Unified Computing Authorized Technology Provider, NCR had to meet a number of requirements. These included achieving the Cisco Data Center Networking Infrastructure Specialization and the Cisco Data Center Storage Networking Specialization, as well as demonstrating mature competencies in server, storage and virtualization technologies.

Cisco’s Authorized Technology Provider Program is part of a comprehensive go-to-market strategy for emerging and advanced technologies. The program helps Cisco to define the knowledge, skills and services that channel partners need to sell, deploy and support these technologies.

Cisco predicts IP traffic in the MEA will reach 2 exabytes per month by 2015, at a CAGR of 52 percent. Business IP traffic in the Middle East and Africa will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 30 percent, faster than the global average of 24 percent.

NCR has been a Cisco service partner and integrator for over two decades. It is also among a select handful of Third Party Maintenance (TPM) partners that have a presence in all five Cisco theatres, focusing on Cisco’s advanced networking, Unified Computing System (UCS) and Telepresence™ solutions.

Network Virtualization Server Virtualization

NetScout Integrates Virtual Probe Technology into Cisco UCS Express Platform

NetScout Systems, Inc. today announced the nGenius Integrated Agent for the Cisco Unified Computing System™ Express (UCS Express) platform. A virtualized implementation of the widely deployed nGenius Probe technology, the nGenius Integrated Agent seamlessly extends high-definition packet-flow monitoring and analysis capabilities into networking and compute platforms to provide valuable, always-on insight into service performance, user experience and to identify security threats closer to the point of a user’s service consumption. This announcement also represents the continued momentum of the Cisco-NetScout technology relationship.

Cisco UCS Express is a converged computing, virtualization, and networking platform for hosting essential infrastructure services and mission-critical business applications in the lean branch office. Leveraging the Cisco UCS Express platform as an intelligent instrumentation point, nGenius Integrated Agent eliminates the need for dedicated, standalone network-based monitoring hardware – dramatically reducing capital and operational costs associated with achieving visibility in remote branch locations. The greater visibility at the network edge and in remote offices enabled by the combined NetScout and Cisco solution helps organizations realize more value from their existing technology investments to simplify the management of IP service delivery and improve user experience by broadening an IT organization’s visibility into end-to-end service delivery.

Part of a Unified Solution
The nGenius Integrated Agent for Cisco UCS Express monitors and performs real-time deep packet analysis (DPA) of all network traffic traversing the Cisco UCS Express platform. This provides visibility into site-to-data center, site-to-cloud and site-to-site service traffic. The nGenius Integrated Agent feeds high-definition application and network performance measurements into the nGenius Service Assurance Solution, which combines metrics from nGenius hardware and software-based intelligent data sources distributed across the service delivery environment for real-time and historical analysis and reporting. The joint Cisco and NetScout solution helps simplify managing today’s borderless enterprise with pervasive and unified end-to-end visibility, from the data center to the branch office, to assure business service continuity and the user experience.

By achieving service-level visibility in the branch, IT staff can obtain farther reaching real-time operational status with intelligent early warning of emerging performance and security issues. In addition, local visibility simplifies and speeds remote troubleshooting, minimizing need for technician dispatch –dramatically reducing the time and expense of problem resolution. This in turn enables the IT organization to more efficiently optimize service delivery, predict and prevent performance issues and speed problem resolution in context with the overall service delivery environment.

Since NetScout introduced its virtualized probe technology in 2010, which includes nGenius Integrated Agent and nGenius Virtual Agent, over 2,000 virtualized probes have been shipped for deployment in customer networks. The largest single deployment of nGenius Integrated Agent is more than 110 agents deployed in a single company, across a multi-location network; and the largest single deployment of nGenius Virtual Agent is more than 300 agents deployed in individual virtual servers across a single company. This solution is ideal for highly distributed organizations, such as finance, retail, government, healthcare, energy, utilities and manufacturing industries with multiple branch and remote offices.

“The increasing convergence of IT services and infrastructure drives the need for a more unified and automated approach to managing service delivery. With the emergence of the lean branch-office architecture, the IT organization needs pervasive visibility that is consistent end-to-end across the enterprise network to assure service delivery for all applications and users,” said Steven Shalita, vice president, marketing, NetScout. “By leveraging the service hosting capabilities of Cisco’s UCS Express, NetScout is removing the operational and cost obstacles that have traditionally limited the IT organization’s ability to monitor branch office locations. Consequently, more pervasive visibility enables the IT organization to achieve a truly global perspective of its service delivery environment to enable a better view into actual user experience and simplify the end-to-end management of IP service delivery.”

The nGenius Integrated Agent for Cisco UCS Express will begin early field trials in December 2011, with general availability planned for late Q1 2012 tied to the actual availability of Cisco’s release of SRE-V v2 software. Please contact NetScout or a NetScout authorized reseller for more information.

NetScout Systems, Inc. is the market leader in Unified Service Delivery Management enabling comprehensive end-to-end network and application assurance. For 27 years, NetScout has delivered breakthrough packet-flow technology that provides trusted and comprehensive real-time network and application performance intelligence enabling unified assurance of the network, applications and users. These solutions enable IT staff to predict, preempt and resolve network and service delivery problems while facilitating the optimization and capacity planning of the network infrastructure. NetScout nGenius® and Sniffer® solutions are deployed at more than 20,000 of the world’s largest enterprises, government agencies, and more than 148 service providers, on over one million physical and 2,000 virtual network segments to assure the network, applications, and service delivery to their users and customers.

Cloud Computing

New HDS Converged Datacenter Solutions Simplify Cloud Adoption

Integrated Storage, Compute, Networking and Systems Management Delivers Enterprise Class Reliability and Predictable, Reliable and Repeatable Application and Cloud Environments

SANTA CLARA, Calif.: Hitachi Data Systems Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., today announced the first in a portfolio of converged data center solutions to automate, accelerate and simplify cloud adoption. Hitachi converged data center solutions combine and optimize enterprise class storage systems and compute blades from Hitachi as well as standard network infrastructure components for a broad range of applications and cloud environments. Through quicker deployment, automation and scalability, the new solutions help organizations adopt cloud at their own pace and see predictable results with faster time to value.

Hitachi converged data center solutions enable the creation of a cloud foundation – or infrastructure cloud – using tightly integrated, shared components including storage, compute and data networking. Many organizations want private cloud benefits but aren’t sure how to begin because of few standards, integrations and certifications for cloud deployments that bring predictable and reliable results. The convergence of storage, compute and network elements offered by Hitachi converged data center solutions delivers significant advantages in enterprise class reliability, deployment speed, performance and management compared to loosely coupled solutions that have not been optimized for integration. The Hitachi solutions also give organizations answers to many cloud unknowns, simplify the order and deployment process, and produce quantifiable results.

“Hitachi Data Systems is keenly focused on simplifying and accelerating our customers’ cloud environments while protecting their IT investments,” said John Mansfield, senior vice president, Global Solutions Strategy and Development, Hitachi Data Systems. “Our new integrated Hitachi converged solutions take that commitment one step further by extending the heritage of reliability and expertise in our Hitachi storage technologies to now include compute resources. This will help our customers to build an infrastructure cloud easily, cost effectively and reliably. It enables them to transition to a cloud delivery model at a pace they are comfortable with and that makes the most sense for their business. Ultimately, these solutions help transform customers’ data centers into automated information centers that closely align business objectives with infrastructure performance to optimize return on assets.”

“In today’s fast evolving and economically challenging business world, IT organizations must spend less time configuring and managing individual devices or applications and dedicate more time developing, delivering, and enhancing new services,” said Richard Villars, vice president of storage and IT executive strategies, IDC. “Companies like HDS that are providing converged data center solutions built on a scalable, reliable, and flexible storage foundation will play a critical role in organizations’ data center transformation efforts.”

Hitachi Converged Data Center Solutions Components

Hitachi converged data center solutions combine storage, compute and networking with software management, automation and optimization. This enables resource self-provisioning and usage tracking, delivers optimization at the application, platform, and hypervisor levels and provides flexibility to consume technology as needed. The initial set of converged solutions will include:

  • Hitachi solutions built on Microsoft® Hyper-V™ Cloud Fast Track: A combination of Hitachi storage and compute with networking and Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 with Hyper-V and System Center for high performance private cloud infrastructures and an avenue for further automation and orchestration.
  • Hitachi Converged Platform for Microsoft Exchange 2010: The first in a portfolio of pre-tested application-specific converged solutions. Engineered for rapid deployment and tightly integrated with Exchange 2010’s powerful new features for resilience, predictable performance and seamless scalability. Supported by Hitachi global services and delivered in an easy to order package.

Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP): Orchestration across Technology Boundaries

A critical element of the HDS converged data center strategy, UCP provides orchestration and management within the portfolio of Hitachi converged solutions. With innovative orchestrated software, UCP centralizes and orchestrates the management of servers, storage and networking as business resource pools from a simple yet comprehensive interface. Through built in intelligence across technology boundaries, it offers large scale compute environments the advantages of IT agility aligned to business goals and the reduction of cost and risk by creating an infrastructure that is robust, automated, cohesive and flexible.

Hitachi Compute Blade: Cloud-enabling Engines for Configuration Flexibility

Hitachi is known for providing reliable and innovative solutions with distinct competitive advantages to some of the world’s most sophisticated data centers. Hitachi has been in the compute business for more than 50 years through its mainframe heritage, and Hitachi Compute Blade products have been available in the Japan market since 2004. Hitachi Data Systems compute strategy leverages its compute blade heritage to seamlessly integrate this functionality with its converged data center solutions, bringing enterprise class reliability and performance benefits to customers. Integrated with Hitachi storage, Hitachi Compute Blade provides the compute capability to enable HDS cloud infrastructure and converged data center environments.

HDS offers two distinct cloud-enabling compute engines that deliver unprecedented configuration flexibility to customers. Hitachi Compute Blade 2000 and Hitachi Compute Blade 320, with logical partitions (LPAR) technology, are the leading X86 enterprise class blade servers to offer mainframe functionality. HDS LPAR technology is a break-through, embedded virtualization feature that builds virtualization right into a blade server’s hardware. Because it is hardware-based virtualization, LPAR technology provides an even greater level of security through physical partitioning and can be used in conjunction with other software-based virtualization technologies. It enables customers to decrease overhead costs while increasing manageability, reliability and performance. Hitachi Compute Blade 2000 with LPAR is also the only blade server to include unique blade SMP interconnect technology that improves scalability by allowing users to configure multiple blades to work as a single system.

As one platform providing IT with an open choice for what’s best in an organization’s environment, Hitachi Compute Blade enables customers to have selected blades running LPARs next to other blades, Microsoft Hyper-V or VMware, all in the same chassis.

Customer Benefits of Hitachi Converged Data Center Solutions

  • Predictable, repeatable, reliable results: Pre-validated reference architectures, pre-packed solutions with enterprise class components in the whole stack, and targeted pre-configuration ensure consistent, predictable results as organizations build their infrastructure cloud. Guidance, templates and built-in automation further extend the ability to replicate process and results.
  • Faster time to value: Quicker, simpler deployment offered from a single source for ordering and for providing services for planning and implementation. For particular converged solutions, pre-configuration of key components drastically reduces onsite deployment time. Intelligent automation of complex tasks enables rapid provisioning of resources with the assurance that the appropriate underlying infrastructure components are in place.
  • Cloud at your own pace: Customers can implement their infrastructure cloud now, build it over time, and combine different solutions and even extend solutions to current IT infrastructure. Optimized solutions for generic workloads, business critical workloads and specific application and hypervisor environments have a varied level of convergence based on customer need, ranging from reference architectures to more comprehensive convergence.
Desktop Virtualization

Next Generation of CSC Dynamic Desktop Includes Cisco UCS, Hyper-V

CSC today announced two further releases of its Dynamic Desktop virtual desktop service. Available immediately, CSC Dynamic Desktop 2.0 incorporates Cisco Unified Computing System servers. Available in fall 2011, CSC Dynamic Desktop 2.1 will incorporate Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center management. CSC Dynamic Desktop lets customers rapidly deploy desktop virtualization solutions and traditional desktop solutions across the enterprise. This secure and cost-effective deployment solution leverages the CSC Unified Desktop strategy and delivery services for an organization’s entire desktop estate.

Cisco and Microsoft join Citrix Systems, Inc. and NetApp as key partners of this comprehensive CSC solution to increase agility and security for users, while providing the right support mechanisms for large scale enterprises. Using a combination of machine and application virtualization, thin-client and secure access technologies, these services assist organizations in introducing their workforce to a highly-flexible, virtual personal desktop environment — available virtually anywhere, anytime, on any device.

“Clients count on CSC to provide robust capabilities and market leading advice when meeting the challenges of enterprises with large end user desktop estates,” said Phil Grove, global director, End User Services, CSC. “The industry recognizes CSC as leaders in the desktop virtualization marketplace, and with this next generation platform, we offer a comprehensive set of Desktop Services and reinforce our focus on being the best partner for our clients.”

Building on the experience of managing more than one million traditional and virtual desktops around the world, CSC is positioning clients for the future with Windows 7, virtual desktops and applications with its Desktop Transformation Services. This service path starts with focused workshops leading into an assessment, followed by an optional solution development lab, and on into initial production deployment, all supported by organizational change strategies helping achieve a SmartWorkplaceSM.

“Customers are looking for ways to balance IT control with employee flexibility, while increasing agility and reducing costs,” said Mike Schutz, senior director, Server and Cloud Division, Microsoft. “Our investments in products, services and partner solutions — like the one with CSC Dynamic Desktop — are designed to deliver on all of those points.”

“The Cisco Unified Computing System was designed to meet the rigorous requirements of virtualized environments, like CSC unified desktop services,” said David Lawler, vice president of marketing for the Server, Access and Virtualization Technology Group at Cisco. “The CSC Dynamic Desktop modular architecture takes advantage of Cisco Unified Computing System features, like extended memory, virtualized adapters and stateless computing, to provide customers more system scalability to offer end users an enhanced desktop virtualization experience.”

About CSC

CSC is a global leader in providing technology-enabled business solutions and services. Headquartered in Falls Church, Va., CSC has approximately 91,000 employees and reported revenue of $16.0 billion for the 12 months ended April 1, 2011.


This Week in Cloud Computing #31 Steve West of Project Insight

This Week in Cloud Computing #31 Steve West of Project Insight

This week we have Steve West, president & CEO of Project Insight. For more information, show notes, and an upcoming schedule, go to


Cloud Computing and City Cloud in 10 minutes

Cloud Computing and City Cloud in 10 minutes

Johan Christenson, Chairman of the board, gives a presentation on Cloud Compouting and City Cloud ( at Catwalk/Devcon in Karlskrona.


Cisco and Citrix Partner on Desktop Virtualization

Cisco and Citrix Partner on Desktop Virtualization

Gordon Payne, Citrix SVP & General Manager, Desktop Division, and Ben Gibson, Cisco VP Data Center Solutions, talk about the announcement made on September 8th 2010 by Cisco and Citrix to collaborate on Desktop virtualization in providing an integrated solutions based on Citrix XenDesktop and Cisco Unified Computing System -More information at