It’s the holiday season and that time of year where we get together with friends, family and loved ones. Big gatherings are common which are fun for some, stressful for others. My family has grown beyond the dining room in my Mom’s house, so we now find ourselves having the big family holiday dinner quite literally in the play room above her garage. Yes, we carry all of the holiday dinner out of the kitchen, up the stairs, through a hallway, and into this room, because it’s the one big room in the house where we can all comfortably sit and eat. So Mom gets a little stressed, but luckily she has a nice, empathetic family. Inefficiency be damned, we optimize for the moment.
IT executives face a similar dilemma in managing day-to-day data center operations, but their customers and user base are a touch less empathetic. Fortunately, we now have the ability to expand off-premises, so we don’t have to buy that big expensive house anymore and can pay for capacity on demand. But we still struggle with how to optimize those expansion capabilities and manage our TCO of our enterprise IT infrastructure assets. (more…)
If your organization is struggling with how to keep your enterprise data secure in the cloud, you aren’t alone. The fact is, the modern data center poses some fairly new security challenges and there is no rule book on how to meet them. Even in security, we are learning as we go.
For most IT organizations, deploying a successful enterprise hybrid cloud is the next step to bringing together all the efficiencies and capabilities they’ve achieved through infrastructure virtualization, standardization and consolidation, and the ongoing evolution of software automation to deliver self-service capabilities.
At EMC IT, we are in the midst of this hybrid cloud transformation, beginning with an internal hybrid cloud platform, called Atlas, which has been providing agile, on-demand infrastructure (IaaS) to our IT users over the past year.
While our enterprise hybrid cloud is continuing to evolve and grow, I wanted to share some insights with you on our project goals, as well as technology and business choices for this important leg of our IT transformation journey. (For more details check out our white paper and reference architecture, EMC IT Enterprise Hybrid Cloud.
Running everything under one cloud where we can seamlessly move workloads on and off premises as we need to and pay for IT infrastructure as we use it—that is the vision EMC IT is pursuing when it comes to its SAP mission-critical applications. As a first step toward that goal, we are in the midst of a pilot program to migrate some SAP applications to an off-premises environment operated by enterprise-class Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) hosting provider Virtustream. EMC acquired Virtustream, a global managed cloud services provider, in 2015.
As part of our ongoing SAP ERP journey, EMC IT will begin leveraging Virtustream’s IaaS model and its unique migration and chargeback technology in a pilot effort which will begin our methodical approach to off-premises expansion.
By the end of-April, we will have migrated our first SAP application—Sales and Operational Planning (S&OP)—to Virtustream’s off-premises hosted cloud environment. Virtusteam will then support S&OP using its unique software solution, xStream, which will also provide consumption-based chargeback capabilities, enabling us to more accurately track our utilization costs and more accurately bill business units for what they consume. (more…)
Are you ready for application delivery at the speed of light?
EMC IT is making giant strides to deliver the capabilities its business customers need, faster and less expensive than ever before through the use of a Platform as a Service (PaaS) solution along with an innovative development methodology.
In June, EMC IT launched EMC Pivotal Cloud Foundry (ECF) PaaS, the on-demand delivery of an automated IT platform which includes compute, network, storage, data protection, security, operations, and monitoring for application development. Our ECF runs on vSphere infrastructure which enables developers and cloud administrators to provision development environments on demand.
Despite the emergence of IT as a Service and the rise of self-service catalogues, most IT operations—including EMC’s—have remained largely manual when it comes to filling users’ requests for networking, storage and compute, struggling to keep pace with growing demand. Until now, that is.
EMC ITis in the process of rolling out a new set of tools, based on a combined approach to infrastructure and automation that will reduce the time it takes to fill customers’ infrastructure demands from months to days or even hours.
The new production environment uses EMC’s Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (FEHC) management platform on VCE Vblock™ converged and hyper-converged infrastructure to provide the abstraction of hardware through software. Translation: IT clients will no longer have to come to the IT infrastructure team every time they need a new environment or an additional server. They can self-provision these services using a truly automated portal and with a standardized set of components.
When introduced, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) was revolutionary in that it promised IT data centers a vehicle for virtualization and rapid provisioning of physical platform components (compute, network and storage). Today’s IaaS solutions have grown to fulfill that promise and much more. Now with the fast adoption of Platform as a Service (PaaS), IT data centers have broadened their rapid provisioning offering to include additional layers such as the operating system, middleware, and application runtime components.
PaaS essentially holds the key to a leaner, faster, more flexible approach to next-generation application development. Application developers are now up and running in hours and minutes as opposed to what would have taken days or even weeks in the “pre-PaaS” era.
Not only does PaaS allow your development environments to be enabled quickly, it also provides your programmers with the complete set of integrated services they need to deliver robust applications such as relational databases, message-queuing, caching, etc. (more…)
Creating a data protection strategy for your organization is a little bit like selecting the right insurance policy for your home. It isn’t the most flashy of endeavors and nobody likes paying those insurance premiums, but when a hurricane rips the roof off your house, you’re glad that you took the time to do it right.
Structuring your data protection strategy is not exclusively an IT decision. It’s primarily a business decision involving a range of stakeholders (not just IT) which provides the products, solutions and processes to execute that strategy based on the value of the data and the objectives of the business.
Data protection is not a one-size-fits-all process, as we in EMC IT, have come to learn. The following are best practices and lessons learned that EMC IT uses to create and maintain our data protection strategy. (more…)
EMC IT’s ongoing quest to meet business’ need for speed and on-demand infrastructure has entered a new chapter as our IT organization implements a software defined data center using EMC’s Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud technology. As we continue to build our infrastructure and services in the cloud, there are several lessons we have learned along the way that will hopefully help your organization on your path to the hybrid cloud.
Like most organizations, EMC IT has virtualized and consolidated our infrastructure, achieved significant cost savings, and continued to drive down provisioning time and increase agility. After this, we used a myriad of tools, software, and scripts to deliver some Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) capabilities. The introduction of new EMC Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud technology (FEHC) is accelerating our progress toward a software defined data center by leveraging a fully integrated technology stack with virtual networking, storage and security, in addition to the virtual compute layer we have been – accustomed to for years.
With the demand for IT infrastructure growing at a steady rate in most organizations, embracing converged IT infrastructure allows IT operations to keep pace with demand without ramping up resources and expenses. Converged infrastructure combines compute, storage, and network in a single package, through technology such as VCE’s Vblock. EMC IT was an early adopter of Vblock in 2009/2010—first to enable our virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and then to support the build out of our brand new 100 percent virtualized, cloud data center.
EMC IT found that standing up IT infrastructure in pre-assembled, converged chunks offers several advantages, including a single vendor for support, a single end-of-support date for all technology components, and a single code release/support stack. In addition, due to the reduction in footprint, cabling and errors, we’ve seen faster deployment times.
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