Archive for the ‘ViPR’ Category

Free and Frictionless Downloads of EMC Software-defined Solutions Now Available

Sam Grocott

Senior Vice President, Marketing & Product Management at EMC ETD

You’ve been hearing a lot from EMC about our software-defined storage (SDS) offerings and how you can use them to build a more adaptive, agile storage infrastructure. But enough talk — it’s time you tried these products in your own environment and experienced those benefits firsthand. To that end, we’re offering Free and Frictionless downloads of these SDS products: ECS, ScaleIO and IsilonSD Edge.

Free and FrictionlessFree and Frictionless means just what it says: downloads at no cost, easy installation on your preferred hardware, testing on your own terms and timeline — and then, once you’re ready to go into production, a simple, direct route to purchase. It’s our way of enabling you to see for yourself exactly how EMC software-defined storage can benefit you before you invest any budget in it.

These aren’t streamlined trial-only versions, either. They’re full-featured, enterprise-grade offerings that cover the following SDS products:

  • ECS, EMC’s software-defined, elastic cloud storage platform for web, mobile and cloud applications
  • ScaleIO software-only, server-based SAN with scale-out performance
  • IsilonSD Edge provides SDS solutions for enterprise edge locations including remote and branch offices

Just click on these ECS, ScaleIO and IsilonSD Edge links and start using the software for free right away. Installation is automated and takes about 15 minutes, and every product comes with automated configuration management, too. Try it, use it, share it within your organization, innovate with it — whatever you want to do is going to be easy and effortless, so go for it.

Only when you’re ready to go into production do you pay for anything. And that’s easy, too: Just choose whether you want to continue with the software-only product or buy it as part of an EMC storage solution, and then visit the EMC eStore You have ample opportunity to experiment with our products and you won’t have to spend any dollars until you’re dead sure. At that point, you also get the combined weight and power of EMC’s entire support infrastructure behind you.

But that’s later. Right now, go get your ECS, ScaleIO and IsilonSD Edge versions of the EMC software-defined storage product you want to try. This is where the rubber meets the road. And you don’t even have to talk to a tire salesman.

 

 

EMC’s Commitment to Everything Software-Defined

Varun Chhabra

Director of Product Marketing, Advanced Software Division at EMC

At EMC, our commitment to creating new solutions for software-defined storage is part of our much larger commitment to supporting the entire software-defined data center infrastructure, in which software, completely abstracted from hardware, enables more adaptive, agile operations. Within the software-defined data center, EMC’s evolving suite of software-defined storage solutions plays an important role in addressing the explosive data growth – both in the volume and variety of data — that poses such a tremendous challenge today. We’ve designed these solutions with features like elastic scale-out to incrementally add storage capacity, open APIs for programmatic flexibility and support for analytics-in-place workloads. With software abstracted from hardware, customers can deploy these and other storage capabilities on the hardware of their choice rather than being locked into a narrow proprietary hardware platform, which means vendor flexibility, lower acquisition costs and more efficient storage provisioning for lower TCO over the long term.

In recent years, EMC has beenCommitment to SDS leading the way in introducing new software-defined storage platforms as well as working to transition our existing industry-leading storage solutions into the software-defined model. We entered the software-defined storage market in 2013 with ViPR Controller, which automates storage provisioning to reduce manual tasks and improve operational efficiency by up to 63%. It delivers storage-as-a-service to consumers, minimizing dependencies on the IT team. Since then, we’ve doubled down on our commitment to providing customers with a comprehensive software-defined storage portfolio. We’ve launched ScaleIO, a server-based storage area network (SAN) with a wide variety of deployment options – available as software on commodity hardware, as an appliance (VxRack™ Node) and as VxRack converged infrastructure from VCE (VxRack Flex System) that can linearly scale performance to thousands of nodes in a single federated cluster. On the cloud/object storage front, we’ve launched Elastic Cloud Storage, or ECS, a software-defined cloud storage platform that is built specifically for web, mobile and cloud applications, designed to run as a software-only solution on existing or commodity hardware. ECS scales effortlessly, and provides benefits such as superior economics and global access associated with the public cloud, while minimizing data residency and compliance risks. Both ScaleIO and ECS are also available for consumption as appliances or as software-only solutions.

Moreover, our software-defined products have very tight integrations with other EMC products. For example, our customers can use ScaleIO in conjunction with EMC XtremCache for flash cache auto-tiering to further accelerate application performance. And those who seek advanced-level protection and recovery for their confidential data can use ScaleIO with EMC RecoverPoint to provide replication and disaster recovery protection in ScaleIO environments.

We also made our EMC Isilon storage family, which has long provided industry-leading scale-out storage for unstructured data, available as a software-only solution. Available now, the Software-defined EMC Isilon (IsilonSD Edge) provides the same ability to manage large and rapidly growing amounts of data in a highly scalable and easy-to-manage way, but with the added benefit of hardware flexibility. Customers can deploy IsilonSD Edge on commodity hardware and easily manage enterprise edge locations including remote and branch offices, replicate the edge data to the core data center and seamlessly tier to private or public clouds.

As our customers move into the new world of software-defined IT, EMC provides a solid base on which to build the scalable, flexible infrastructures that will transform your data centers to meet the future head-on. Our growing portfolio of software-defined storage solutions is a fundamental component of that base, providing a range of scale-out solutions to meet rapidly growing and changing data demands.

To keep up with more EMC SDS information and trends, visit: www.emc.com/sds

 

The EMC Portfolio Approach to Next-generation Storage Technology

Suresh Sathyamurthy

Sr. Director, Product Marketing & Communications at EMC

EMC is approaching the emerging revolution in storage technology development with a portfolio of advanced tools and solutions. These storage solutions are engineered to adopt and grow with the next-generation of big and unstructured data generated from diversified industries.

As data begins to inundate the marketplace, file types and sizes are becoming more extreme, mutative and mountainous than ever before. IT departments are tasked with managing constant streams of data from the cloud, social platforms, mobile devices and the web, as well as other sources never before realized by traditional BI and on-premise content management infrastructures. Software-defined storage (SDS) represents the leading edge of storage solutions, and EMC is positioned at the helm.

EMC’s depth of industry expertise SDS Portfolioand emerging tech software development experience have informed the creation of a suite of solutions that can be tailored to meet the needs of organizations transitioning to SDS, those working to incorporate SDS technology into their existing storage infrastructure, or those looking to redefine how they use, gather, maintain and manage the constant influx of data on which their businesses depend.

What sets EMC apart is a grander vision for SDS as a driving concept that should span how storage will be delivered now and in the future. EMC is embracing, redefining and disrupting the industry standards to deliver vendor neutral, open-standard APIs that allow products to be used as a standalone platform or part of a full cloud deployment, like OpenStack. Open source community editions increase flexibility and reduce risk.

EMC software-defined storage products improve and provide new means of organization and delivery models for file, block, object, HDFS and hyper-converged storage, as well as next-gen rack scale, data center and hyper scale-out storage. These products include IsilonSD Edge (scale-out file storage), ScaleIO (scale-out block storage) and ECS (cloud-scale object storage). The flexibility of EMC SDS solutions makes them available as appliances or free and frictionless downloadable software that can be installed on industry-standard hardware.

The sophisticated nature of EMC’s broad selection of SDS solutions allows easy integration into existing content management schemes without massive hardware replacement investments, new staff integration or performance downtime. SDS allows complete control over protocols, access, interface and data management within the systems, removing extraneous nodes, access points and machinery from the content management experience. This achieves more streamlined IT processes with reduced hardware, software, training and staffing costs and the ability to grow and adapt as the advancements in data collection and formatting continue.

The portfolio of SDS solutions developed by EMC allows organizations to not only better collect, protect and store next-gen data types and proportions, but to provide the possibility of streamlined growth as technology transforms, providing multi-generational, cost-effective options for the future of IT sectors everywhere.

Learn more about how EMC SDS solutions can prepare your enterprise for the future of big data. Stay up to day on everything SDS at www.emc.com/sds.

Introducing CoprHD. EMC Changes the Game for Software-defined Storage Automation and Management

EMC is certainly no stranger to open source. EMC and Pivotal are both founding members of the CloudFoundry Foundation. And EMC recently announced a $10 million investment and its first CloudFoundry dojo, based in Cambridge, MA, that will attract developers and facilitate the creation of applications on CloudFoundry.  In November, EMC announced the EMC OpenStack Reference Architecture Partner Program and partnerships with Canonical Ubuntu, Mirantis and Red Hat.  EMC also recently launched EMC {code} – the Community Onramp for Developer Enablement, which provides both EMC and community contributions of open source code, drivers, tools, samples, and more. EMC supports and contributes to open source in a number of ways, yet EMC is still considered a proprietary vendor. Well, if none of the above proves EMC’s open source bona fides, perhaps this will: On May 5th, EMC is moving EMC ViPR Controller development into the open source community.

This is big news. For the first time, EMC is taking a commercial product and releasing it to community-driven development.  The open source project, named CoprHD, makes the code for ViPR Controller – all the storage automation and control functionality – available in the open source community. Customers, partners, developers and other storage vendors can download, expand and contribute to CoprHD. EMC will continue to sell EMC ViPR Controller as a commercial offering enhanced with service, support, training, and more to help organizations quickly adopt software-defined storage.

It’s been an amazing journey. Two years ago, EMC announced and subsequently launched EMC ViPR Software Defined Storage. Two years later, The ViPR Controller code, now open source project CoprHD, will be open and available for download on Github.  This signifies a fundamental change to EMC’s development model. All development for ViPR Controller and CoprHD will be done in the open source community, with EMC and others contributing.  CoprHD is licensed under the Mozilla Public License 2.0 (MPL2.0), which encourages community sharing and requires anyone who modifies the source code to share those modifications with the community.  EMC is also establishing free and frictionless access to CoprHD to facilitate community-driven collaboration that will accelerate and expand functionality and support for third party storage.

Why is EMC taking this step? EMC fundamentally believes that software-defined storage is a strategy, not a product. The goal of software-defined storage is to give customers choice of storage services and hardware platforms, make it all simple and less costly to manage, and eliminate proprietary lock-in. Making the ViPR Controller source code available as open source project CoprHD will accelerate development and increase support for non-EMC storage arrays and data protection technologies. It also strengthens CoprHD as a single, vendor-neutral API control point for software-defined storage automation.

This open source model of open, collaborative development is crucial to the future success of software-defined storage and storage automation and management. CoprHD and ViPR Controller will give customers choice, flexibility, and transparency. Purpose-built storage platforms from EMC and others will always remain data center necessities. But customers increasingly value more plug and play architectures – driven by software-defined solutions and standardized infrastructure – and will often sacrifice some level of efficiency to obtain best-of-breed features, more flexibility and lower switching costs. In the modern data center, successful storage vendors will compete on the merits of their solutions and deliver compelling customer experiences. As CoprHD and ViPR Controller extend support to more and more storage platforms, EMC welcomes this new competitive playing field. EMC is ready to lead in this new software-defined world.

Are you a developer that has contributed to a product in the open source community before? Are you planning on contributing to CoprHD?  Are you a storage administrator or architect looking to evaluate and deploy CoprHD? If so, tell us about your experience!  We invite you to join us on this new journey and share your discoveries…let’s see where it takes us.

Software-Defined Storage Marries Enterprise Storage with the Cloud

Rodger Burkley

Principal Product Marketing Manager at EMC

This blog focuses on software defined storage….the all caps version.   SDS.  Or….by another popular industry term….the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) platform.  SDDC platforms are transforming Data Centers because theySoftware Storage can simultaneously marry (ah…some might say integrate) a variety of traditional hardware storage resources, data types and technologies into one “federated” and aggregated data center infrastructure.   Moreover, SDDC platforms can control, manage and even monitor the entire data center storage (and compute and networking) operation from a “single pane of glass” console – outside the data path.  Yes, I’m referring to ViPR Controller SDS.

ScaleIO is an excellent commodity hardware based software defined storage (sds) system for creating block data Server SANs.  It’s hyper-converged, hyper-scalable, flexible and highly elastic.  In fact, by its very name creates a scalable low-cost virtual SAN array from commodity servers.

As good as ScaleIO (sds) is, however, it’s not the whole SDS story.  A good piece to be sure.  But it’s a virtual SAN solution that covers a portion of today’s contemporary enterprise data center’s needs.    True, ScaleIO can completely cover some specific storage use cases extremely well and efficiently.   Fact is, our competitors out there – particularly from the Server SAN appliance camp – may be overstating the extent Server SANs and “SAN-less” storage can be integrated with SMB and Enterprise Data Centers’ existing traditional storage infrastructure and arrays.  In fact, many customers confuse ScaleIO (or VSAN) sds with ViPR Controller SDS. After all, they’re both software defined, right?

Many of you already know this.  The principle cause for some of this confusion is that traditional external storage is quite alive and doing well in today’s storage market environment and Enterprise customer base.  Most of these enterprises store the vast majority of data on their traditional hardware arrays.  Fact is, they’ll probably be doing so for a long time.  Just witness the “demise of tape” as a deep, ‘frozen’ archive medium.  And according to IDC, more than 20,000 petabytes of new external storage system capacity was purchased in 2013 alone.

So rumors of traditional external storage’s impending death are a bit exaggerated…to rip off a humorist slogan from one humorous wise old sage. Accordingly, it stands to reason that a SDS federated and unified management platform solution needs to work seamless with that traditional hardware resource layer…comprised of multiple vendors…and data types.  And ViPR Controller does that….hands down.

On the other end of the data center spectrum…or relay station… however, is the need to manage external data storage resources and I/O traffic access that lie physically outside the data center’s local physical or logical resource control.   Specifically, the Cloud – whether it be Public or Enterprise Off-premise…

When it comes to Public Clouds, service providers like Amazon, Google and Microsoft will remain big players due to their sheer economies of scale and easy table stakes entry.  You hear a lot lately about ‘supplemental storage’ or remote DR/copy on these Public Clouds.  But those very same Public Clouds concern many Enterprise IT Directors too…. (i.e., service outages, SLAs, data security/integrity, multi-tenancy, etc.).   Not surprisingly, Private and Hybrid ‘on-premise’ Clouds are gaining increased popularity and momentum.  So a true, useful/attractive “federating” SDS platform needs to support, manage and control traditional external storage; Cloud storage and – yes – commodity based sds Server SAN arrays like ScaleIO and VSAN.

Bottom-line?  Viable and highly productive/ROI software defined storage implementations should not be limited to lower case sds and/or strictly commodity hardware.  With ViPR Controller and it’s unifying software abstraction layer, a broad platform can be created for managing, provisioning and automating federated storage that includes traditional enterprise storage platforms as well as the “Cloudsphere”, Server SANs, Data Lakes, OpenStack, REST APIs, on-line analytics and other data center resources, tools and access portals.  Again, ViPR Controller shines as a true SDS/SDDC (or whatever the latest popular term happens to be).

Obviously, implementing a purpose-built sds (i.e., ScaleIO) or SDS (i.e,. ViPR Controller or ECS) in an Enterprise Data Center needs to be well thought-out and phased in incrementally.  Why?  Storage systems invariably represent an Enterprise Data Center’s largest investment – and arrays typically have long operational life cycles.  Plus storage admins are used to and quite familiar with them.  This is their bread and butter and ‘job security’.  And use cases involving evolving Public, Hybrid or Private on or off premise storage clouds – married with legacy on-premise, metro or remote geo based traditional storage —  must also be well considered when  proposing and evaluating software defined storage at any level.

In closing, users don’t like to manage multiple storage stacks, architectures or interfaces.  Simplicity and easy everything are highly valued.   It’s all about delivering broad enough, all-encompassing storage strategies that help SMB and Enterprise customers get the most out of their current investments/ROI while adopting and/or migrating to new, next-gen storage technologies in an orderly, seamless and painless manner.  Did I mention ViPR controller and “marriage”?  Maybe more like the “Presiding Official”…

Three Key Observations From the Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure and Operations Management Conference

I was fortunate enough to be part of the team that supported the EMC presence at the recent Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure and Operations Management Conference in Las Vegas earlier this month. Lots of hard work (briefings, meetings, staffing the expo booth) but also a great opportunity to speak with users and customers, as well as garner some interesting insights from the Gartner analyst-presented sessions.
DSCN0320

So what were some of the key themes I observed? First, the software-defined data center is moving a lot closer to reality for a lot of attendees. Key technologies such as software-defined storage and software-defined networking have moved for most from the “I’ll keep my eyes on it” bucket in 2014 into the “I’ve got to do something about this in 2015” bucket. That’s no surprise to our team; we’ve been observing a lot of the same behavior in our interactions with customers at places like executive briefings and user-group meetings. And it helped drive a lot of the insights we presented in our event-sponsor session on“Making the Software-Defined Data Center a Reality for Your Business,” in which the need for automation, especially at the management and monitoring level, was emphasized as a critical requirement to delivering on the promise of the software-defined data center.

Another key theme that had almost everyone talking was a notion of “bi-modal IT,” in which IT operations would simultaneously support both an agile, devops-like model for rapid iterations and deployment of newer applications and services, while also maintaining a “traditional” IT operations model for more traditional, less business-differentiating applications and services. In some ways, analysts had been alluding to this for years – devops was coming; it would be a major influential force; prepare for it. What was lacking was the “how,” and that confused and even scared people. But now at this event we learnedanalysts are saying to support both models (hence “bi-modal” IT), and, more importantly, deploy supporting systems and tools for each – and absolutely don’t try to use one system for both models (because nothing is out there that can do that effectively). Folks I spoke to almost had a concurrent sense of relief: Two modes, each with their own tools and systems, makes sense to everyone, and eliminates that angst associated with potentially trying to make the round peg fit in a square hole. And since it came from this event, it has the inherent “validation” that many in upper management want.

DSCN0314 Building on this, the third theme I noticed (more from my interactions with other conference attendees, especially at the EMCexpo booth) was a strong interest in continuous availability of applications and systems, rather than in backing up and being able to recover these same environments. People were asking the right questions: For example, what kinds of storage architectures make sense in a continuous-availability model, and can those be aligned with changing data needs? (Yes, and EMC has a lot to offer on this front.) What are the key elements of a monitoring system that focuses on continuous availability? (One answer: automated root-cause and impact analysis, which radically shrinks time needed to identify problems, and is a key capability in the EMC Service Assurance Suite.) And can a server-based SAN play a role in continuous availability architecture? (Absolutely – as long as you’re managing it with EMC ScaleIO.)

And this event also had its share of the unexpected (the Las Vegas strip was fogged in – yes, that’s not afoggy_lv typo – for almost two full days), as well as lighter fun-filled moments (EMC’s arcade-themed hospitality suite for conference attendees, complete with a customized Pac-Man-like game called “ViPR Strike). And as always, it’s the discussions and interactions that I cherish and remember the most.

Which brings it back to you: Were you at the conference too? If so, what do you think of these higher-level observations of mine? What else do you have to add or share? Even if you didn’t go, what are your thoughts and opinions on what you’ve read here?

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