Building the right foundation is the key to data-driven enterprise

Japanese Garden


Have you ever been in a Japanese Garden? These beautiful gardens are carefully planned, and represent the perfect harmony of stones, moss, water, and trees make it a place you want to linger and relax. Integrated systems in IT are quite similar: multiple elements like compute, storage, network, and software are put together to form a harmonious solution.

One of the most difficult parts of designing a Japanese Garden is setting the stones. It’s real art - the education to do so takes up to 10 years in Japan. Like setting stones in Japanese Gardens, there’s no standard one size fits all approach when it comes to designing IT infrastructures. It always depends on the specific customer application environment, which architectural approach fits best.

The decision whether to go for a converged (CI) or a hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) requires a close look on scalability requirements, storage capacity and management needs, besides existing processes, and roles in an IT organization.

Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere

Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI)


Small polished black pebbles

EXPLORE Probably one of the most known elements in a Japanese Garden are the stacks of small polished black pebbles surrounded by raked gravel. They symbolize small islands in the sea. Even with little skills, it’s easy to build such a stack of pebbles. You often find these stacks in smaller ZEN gardens, because they do not consume much space. Hyper-converged infrastructures (HCI) are quite similar. The highly modular architecture comprised of industry-standard x86 server building blocks delivering compute and storage resources is ideal for organizations looking to build an IT infrastructure that is easy to setup, scale and maintain. Due to its small footprint, HCI is best suited for environments with limited space, like in remote locations or branch offices. EXPERIENCE The variety of colors and shapes of the stones used for the stacks is huge. You find stones in black, white, grey, or even in red - some are polished, and some are more in their natural shape. Also, the number of stones used in a stack differs from stack to stack. It’s so easy to build stacks of different height. Our solutions are just as colorful and scalable as the stone stacks. We offer a solution for every taste by supporting the leading HCI software stacks from VMware, Microsoft or Nutanix. Regardless of what type of software vendor you choose, it’s very easy to build and scale a HCI cluster made up of standard x86 server nodes. EVOLVE Like building stacks of pebble stones in a ZEN garden doesn’t require huge investments, implementing HCI is a very cost-efficient way to set up an IT infrastructure. The convergence of compute and storage resources in an industry-standard server significantly lowers TCO versus traditional storage approaches. In a user survey by industry analyst firm FreeForm Dynamics, 33% of all customers who have deployed a hyper-converged infrastructure are reporting actual savings between 50% and 75% versus a traditional infrastructure approach. Another 46% report savings between 25% and 50%. Apart from cost savings, HCI dramatically simplifies the path to hybrid IT by delivering a common platform for on-premises and off-premises deployments, enabling a consistent operational experience across both deployment models. In that same user survey, 66% of all customers agree that hyper-converged infrastructures provide an ideal foundation for Hybrid IT use cases.

IT Buyers Guide: Evaluating hyper-converged storage

Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI)


Group of stones

EXPLORE In a Japanese garden, the stones have a symbolic meaning that goes far beyond decorative elements. Stones form the framework and solid foundation for further design elements such as waterfalls or bridges. For example, you often find a group of stones, where a massive piece of rock is surrounded by a couple of smaller stones. Converged infrastructures (CI) in IT are quite similar. The center piece is a central storage system attached to several smaller entities – the server systems. It’s the best solution for companies looking for a rock-solid infrastructure foundation to run demanding workloads such as huge data bases and business-critical applications. EXPERIENCE Just like stones serve a broad range of usage scenarios in a Japanese Garden, converged infrastructure solutions support a huge variety of use cases in almost every environment, be it a data center location or a remote and branch office. The corner stone of every converged infrastructure is an external storage system featuring enterprise-class storage management, high-availability, and disaster recovery capabilities. Stones in a Japanese Garden can have different sizes and shapes. Similarly, storage systems support a mix of storage technologies (Hybrid, All-flash or NVMe All-flash) that can be combined to match different data storage requirements. The integrated data protection capabilities of storage systems like smooth migration, replication and transparent failover ensure business continuity with no disruptions or unplanned downtime. EVOLVE An arrangement with bigger rocks has the advantage of offering better strength to withstand strong winds, storms or even earthquakes. Such an arrangement can almost live for ages. Converged infrastructures based on enterprise-class storage systems are just like that. Both have stood the test of time, standing strong in even adverse conditions. Another key benefit of a converged infrastructure approach is its highly flexible architecture, which allows you to scale compute and storage resources independently. So, if your workloads scale mainly vertical, or require granular expansion at the component level, with a converged infrastructure approach you can achieve an ideal balance of capacity, price, and performance.

Planning your journey to modern apps and hybrid IT

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