Simplifying IT with Dell EqualLogic

2017-07-27T00:01:09+00:00 August 23rd, 2010|Uncategorized|

The Dell EqualLogic PS Series is a family of virtualized iSCSI storage arrays that combine intelligence and automation with fault tolerance to provide simplified administration, rapid deployment, enterprise performance and reliability, and seamless scalability. The PS Series high performance storage arrays deliver a range of capacity points from 400 GB to 48 TB in either a 3U or 4U chassis. PS Series arrays can be combined to create a virtualized SAN that scales up to 768 TB under a single management interface.

Ease of use • Intelligent, automated management helps minimize tedious administrative tasks

• From box to operating SAN in minutes

• Monitor petabytes of storage across dozens of SANs from a single console




• Modular design allows growth when needed

• Online expansion between hardware generations

• Linear scalability — scale capacity and performance together

• Manage a growing pool of storage from one single user interface

• Thin provisioning to increase space efficiency for optimal capacity utilization

• Expand overall group capacity by mixing pools of 6000 and 6500 arrays



Enterprise efficiency

• Addition of 10GbE supports high-performance, high-bandwidth applications such as data warehouses and streaming media

• Maximize your IT investments with an end-to-end unified fabric data center encompassing servers, EqualLogic storage and Networking

• Enterprise level virtualized storage that matches virtualized server environments

• Support for multi-tiered application designs with automated tiering included in hybrid models  (6000XVS & 6010XVS)

  Enterprise performance • Exceptional performance for both sequential and transactional applications with linear scalability as arrays are added

• Automated, real-time load balancing across drives, RAID sets, connections, cache and controllers for optimized performance and resource utilization

• Pooling capability enables appropriate service levels for individual applications




• Fault tolerant, fully redundant dual controller

• Designed for 99.999% availability

• Enterprise-class RAID protection

• Full hardware redundancy — hot swappable controllers, fans, power supplies, disks




• All-inclusive enterprise features and functionality with no additional software licenses to purchase

• Easy connection via iSCSI

• Automated features help to eliminate highly specialized administrative costs

• Adopt 10GbE and run both 1GbE and 10GbE in the same environment without de-valuing legacy equipment

• EqualLogic SANs have the lowest TCO of common storage array architectures—fully 1/3 to 1/2 the total cost of competitors over a five year period2


Coretek Services is a Michigan based Systems Integration and IT consulting company that not only works with virtualization infrastructure such as VMware, Citrix XenServer, and Microsoft Hyper-V, but also is a Michigan based reseller of Dell EqualLogic SANs.  Please contact us today for any virtualization requirements, storage requirements, or specific Dell EqualLogic SAN needs.


TAKE FIVE: Why I Like Citrix

2017-07-27T00:01:09+00:00 August 10th, 2010|Uncategorized|

Here’s a situation where the nice guy finishes as President and CEO.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been working on a profile of Citrix. I’ve really enjoyed the research — because I felt like there was a good story lurking under the covers — and the writing, which has been made easier by the great interviews I had with Citrix CTO Simon Crosby, and Citrix President and CEO Mark Templeton. Here’s what I discovered.

Take 1
Mark Templeton. I can’t help it, I just like the guy. He was running late for our phone interview, so I had some time to chat with Julie Geer, the helpful PR person who had lined up the interview, and she was telling me how much everybody likes Mark — I know, I know, it’s not as though she’s going to say what a dirtball he is, even if he was, which he isn’t. When Templeton gets on the line, he apologizes left and right about keeping me waiting. My reaction: Wow, he’s totally unpretentious for a guy in his position. There was no “slick” in him. On a more professional level, you’ve got to admire somebody who has been president and CEO of a high-tech company for 11 years and has not only hung onto his job, but has navigated Citrix through a lot of turbulent waters. Mark Templeton = good guy.

Take 2
Simon Crosby. When I think of Simon, I harken back to Eric Clapton (E.C.) talking about Stevie Ray Vaughan. E.C. said Stevie Ray was like an “open channel,” meaning that he never had to stop and regroup before taking off on another fabulous sonic blast. Simon is a great interview because he can talk on and on — in detail — about whatever he’s asked to discuss. The only downside to that is trying to figure out what to use and what to edit out, which is a small price to pay for all that good content.

Take 3
The Microsoft deal. When you take the time to look at this long-standing agreement (it goes back at least to the late ’90s), you can see how good it is for both companies, which are complementary as opposed to being competitive. As long as Citrix can remain the company that best exemplifies what Microsoft is looking for in an OEM partner — which Microsoft says is the case — they can continue to earn big bucks by delivering Windows apps to that huge market. Adding to the luster for Citrix: Microsoft makes no bones about saying VMware is a competitor.

Take 4
XenDesktop. The buck stops at XenDesktop, which is the real deal for Citrix as a competitor to VMware, and which is now available as part of a suite with XenApp, which has been making Citrix a lot of money for a long time. Yes, VMware has excelled in the server virtualization market — which seems not to bother Citrix because the company still has big plans for XenServer as the hypervisor of choice for XenDesktop, XenApp and NetScaler — but Citrix is at least VMware’s equal in the VDI/desktop virtualization space, which has huge potential. XenDesktop’s use of HDX adaptive technology (which includes the ICA protocol) looks to have an advantage over PCoIP, which VMware uses with its View VDI product. Bottom line: the future looks legitimately bright.

Take 5
The Citrix image. Citrix has been taking it on the chin from bloggers, reporters and pundits of all kinds for quite a while now, mostly around two topics: the possible demise of XenServer as a result of its perceived poor performance in the server virtualization market, and the possibility of Microsoft abrogating its cooperative agreement with Citrix and then blowing the company out of the virtualization market. To which I reply: Citrix has announced that the next full version of XenServer will be available by mid-year, and Microsoft loves dealing with Citrix, as I noted in my third take. All of which goes to prove: indeed, image is not everything.


Top 10 Storage Virtualization Trends of 2010

2017-07-27T00:01:09+00:00 August 4th, 2010|Uncategorized|

The storage area network (SAN) is now an essential technology for many large and midsize enterprises. Over the years SANs have become more sophisticated as vendors have rolled out systems that deliver better storage utilization and functionality. Based on these positive developments, 2010 should bring new and interesting products in several key areas. Here are our top 10 trends to keep an eye on in the coming year — along with the insights of key IT managers who are looking to optimize their existing storage and virtualization strategies.

1. Integration of solid state with rotating media for higher performance and lower energy costs.
Product picks: EMC FAST, Fusion-io, Compellent Storage Center

In an effort to provide the best possible storage solutions, many storage vendors are looking for ways to marry the high performance of solid-data memory to the lower cost of rotating media. As prices continue to drop for all storage technologies — and as hard drives get faster and cheaper — vendors are specifically working to incorporate the latest solid-state drive technologies into traditional SAN arrays. EMC Corp. and Compellent both offer fully automated storage tiering, which is the ability to store data depending on the needs of the application. More-frequently accessed files are stored on faster-performing disks, while less-frequently needed files are moved to tape.

“We’re using the Compellent product as part of our new Savvis Symphony cloud infrastructure service offering,” says Bryan Doerr, CTO of St. Louis-based services provider Savvis Inc. “We like how it has a policy that sits between the application and the array to control how each block of data is written to the physical media, based on frequency of usage.”

Doerr is pleased that these decisions are made automatically. “We don’t have to map tables or keep track of what files are stored where, and that’s a very powerful benefit to us,” he says. “Compellent can move individual blocks from a low-cost and low-performing SATA drive to a solid-state drive for the most-frequently updated data.”

One of the more interesting products is a hardware accelerator plug-in adapter card from Fusion-io that can pre-cache data using solid data memory for SAN arrays and other large-scale storage applications.

2. De-duplication technology — on storage and backups — can help open unused space.
Product picks: EMC Avamar, Symantec/Veritas Netbackup PureDisk, IBM/Tivoli Storage Manager, NetApp FlexClone

De-duplication technologies can provide a powerful way to quickly reclaim storage and minimize backup jobs. When users first start applying these technologies, they’re frequently surprised at how much duplication actually exists. As depicted in Figure 1, with PureDisk software from Symantec Corp., users can drill into a backup job and see that they could save more than 95 percent of their storage by getting rid of duplicate data. This capability offers huge potential savings, particularly when backing up virtual machine (VM) collections and remote offices.

Part of the challenge when using VMs is dealing with the fact that they share many common files inside each virtual image — the boot files for the operating system, the applications and so forth. A de-duplication product can leverage this by making only a single copy of common files.

PureDisk is typical of de-duplication products in that it operates in two different ways. For starters, you can use a PureDisk client or agent that runs on each VM and reports the unique files back to the central PureDisk backup server. And PureDisk can also back up the entire VMware VMDK image file without any agents on the separate VMs. This offloads backup from the ESX server and enables single-pass backups to protect all the files — whether they’re in use or not — that comprise the VM.

“De-duplication gives us big storage savings,” says Chuck Ballard, network and technical services manager at food manufacturer J&B Group, based in St. Michael, Minn. “We have 30 machines, each with a 20GB virtual hard drive, on our SAN. Rather than occupy 600GB, we have about a third of that, and we can grow and shrink our volumes as our needs dictate. We use the

[NetApp] LUN copy utility to replicate our workstation copies off of a master image.”

Ballard stores his images on NetApp’s SAN arrays that have their own utility — called FlexClone — to make virtual copies of the data. “We had EMC and also looked at IBM, but both of them had limited dynamic-provisioning features,” he says, adding that a VMware upgrade that required 4.5TB on J&B Group’s old SAN now uses just 1.5TB on the company’s new storage infrastructure.

3. More granularity in backup and restoration of virtual servers.
Product picks: Vizioncore vRanger Pro, Symantec Netbackup, Asigra Cloud Backup

When combined with de-duplication technologies, more granular backups make for efficient data protection — particularly in virtualized environments where storage requirements quickly balloon and it can take longer than overnight to make backups. Backup vendors are getting better at enabling recoveries that understand the data structure of VM images and can extract just the necessary files without having to restore an entire VM disk image. Symantec Netbackup and Vizioncore vRanger both have this feature, which makes them handy products to have in the case of accidentally deleted configuration or user files. For its part, Asigra Cloud Backup can protect server resources both inside the data center and the cloud.

4. Live migrations and better integration of VM snapshots make it easier to back up, copy and patch VMs.
Product picks: FalconStor FDS, VMware vMotion and vStorage APIs, Citrix XenServer

VMware vStorage API for Data Protection facilitates LAN-free backup of VMs from a central proxy server rather than directly from an ESX Server. Users can do centralized backups without the overhead and hassle of having to run separate backup tasks from inside each VM. These APIs were formerly known as the VMware Consolidated Backup, and the idea behind them is to offload the ESX server from the backup process. This involves taking VM snapshots at any point in time to facilitate the backup and recovery process, so an entire .VMDK image doesn’t have to be backed up from scratch. It also shortens recovery time.

Enhanced VM storage management also includes the ability to perform live VM migrations without having to shut down the underlying OS. Citrix Systems XenServer offers this feature in version 5.5, and VMware has several tools including vMotion and vSphere that can make it easier to add additional RAM and disk storage to a running VM.

Finally, vendors are getting wise to the fact that many IT engineers are carrying smartphones and developing specific software to help them manage their virtualization products. VMware has responded to this trend with vCenter Mobile Access, which allows users to start, stop, copy and manage their VMs from their BlackBerry devices. Citrix also has its Receiver for iPhone client, which makes it possible to remotely control a desktop from an iPhone and run any Windows apps on XenApp 5- or Presentation Server 4.5-hosted servers. While looking at a Windows desktop from the tiny iPhone and BlackBerry screens can be frustrating — and a real scrolling workout — it can also be helpful in emergency situations when you can’t get to a full desktop and need to fix something quickly on the fly.

5. Thin and dynamic provisioning of storage to help moderate storage growth.
Product picks: Symantec/Veritas Storage Foundation Manager, Compellent Dynamic Capacity, Citrix XenServer Essentials, 3Par Inserv

There are probably more than a dozen different products in this segment that are getting better at detecting and managing storage needs. A lot of space can be wasted setting up new VMs on SAN arrays, and these products can reduce that waste substantially. This happens because, when provisioning SANs, users generally don’t know exactly how much storage they’ll need, so they tend to err on the high side by creating volumes that are large enough to meet their needs for the life of the server. The same thing happens when they create individual VMs on each virtual disk partition.

With dynamic-provisioning applications, as application needs grow, SANs automatically extend the volume until it reaches the configured maximum size. This allows users to over-provision disk space, which is fine if their storage needs grow slowly. However, because VMs can create a lot of space in a short period of time, this can also lead to problems. Savvy users will deal with this situation by monitoring their storage requirements with Storage Resource Management tools and staying on top of what has been provisioned and used.

Savvis is using the 3Par InServ Storage Servers for thin provisioning. “We don’t have to worry about mapping individual logical units to specific physical drives — we just put the physical drives in the array and 3Par will carve them up into usable chunks of storage. This gives us much higher storage densities and less wasted space,” says Doerr.

Citrix XenServer Essentials includes both thin- and dynamic-provisioning capabilities, encoding differentials between the virtual disk images so that multiple VMs consume a fraction of the space required because the same files aren’t duplicated. Dynamic workload streaming can be used to rapidly deploy server workloads to the most appropriate server resources — physical or virtual — at any time during the week, month, quarter or year. This is particularly useful for applications that may be regularly migrated between testing and production environments or for systems that require physical deployments for peak user activity during the business cycle.

Compellent has another unique feature, which is the ability to reclaim unused space. Their software searches for unused storage memory blocks that are part of deleted files and marks them as unused so that Windows OSes can overwrite them.

6. Greater VM densities per host will improve storage performance and management.
Product pick: Cisco Unified Communications Server

As corporations make use of virtualization, they find that it can have many applications in a variety of areas. And nothing — other than video — stretches storage faster than duplicating a VM image or setting up a bunch of virtual desktops. With these greater VM densities comes a challenge to keep up with the RAM requirements needed to support them.

In this environment, we’re beginning to see new classes of servers that can handle hundreds of gigabytes of RAM. For example, the Cisco Systems Unified Communications Server (UCS) supports large amounts of memory and VM density (see Figure 2): In one demonstration from VirtualStorm last fall at VMworld, there were more than 400 VMs running Windows XP on each of six blades on one Cisco UCS. Each XP instance had more than 90GB of applications contained in its Virtual Desktop Infrastructure image, which was very impressive.

“It required a perfect balance between the desktops, the infrastructure, the virtualization and the management of the desktops and their applications in order to scale to thousands of desktops in a single environment,” says Erik Westhovens, one of the engineers from VirtualStorm writing on a blog entry about the demonstration.

Savvis is an early UCS customer. “I like where Cisco is taking this platform; combining more functionality within the data center inside the box itself,” Doerr says. “Having the switching and management under the hood, along with native virtualization support, helps us to save money and offer different classes of service to our Symphony cloud customers and ultimately a better cloud-computing experience.”

“If you don’t buy enough RAM for your servers, it doesn’t pay to have the higher-priced VMware licenses,” says an IT manager for a major New York City-based law firm that uses EMC SANs. “We now have five VMware boxes running 40 VMs a piece, and bought new servers specifically to handle this.”

As users run more guest VMs on a single physical server, they’ll find they need to have more RAM installed on the server to maintain performance. This may mean they need to move to a more expensive, multiple-CPU server to handle the larger RAM requirements. Cisco has recognized that many IT shops are over-buying multiple-CPU servers just so they can get enough dual in-line memory module slots to install more RAM. The Cisco UCS hardware will handle 384GB of RAM and not require the purchase of multiple processor licenses for VMware hypervisors, which saves money in the long run.

James Sokol, the CTO for a benefits consultancy in New York City, points out that good hypervisor planning means balancing the number of guest VMs with the expanded RAM required to best provision each guest VM. “You want to run as many guests per host [as possible] to control the number of host licenses you need to purchase and maintain,” Sokol says. “We utilize servers with dual quad-core CPUs and 32GB of RAM to meet our hosted-server requirements.”

A good rule of thumb for Windows guest VMs is to use a gigabyte of RAM for every guest VM that you run.

7. Better high-availability integration and more fault-tolerant operations.
Product picks: VMware vSphere 4 and Citrix XenServer 5.5

The latest hypervisors from VMware and Citrix include features that expedite failover to a backup server and enable fault-tolerant operations. This makes it easier for VMs to be kept in sync when they’re running on different physical hosts, and enhances the ability to move the data stored on one host to another without impacting production applications or user computing. The goal is to provide mainframe-class reliability and operations to virtual resources.

One area where virtualized resources are still playing catch-up to the mainframe computing world is security policies and access controls. Citrix still lacks role-based access controls, and VMware has only recently added this to its vSphere line. This means that in many shops, just about any user can start and stop a VM instance without facing difficult authentication hurdles. There are third-party security tools — such as the HyTrust Appliance for VMware — that allow more granularity over which users have what kind of access to particular VMs. Expect other third-party virtualization management vendors to enter this market in the coming year. (To get an idea of how HyTrust’s software operates, check out the screencast I prepared for them here.)

8. Private cloud creation and virtualized networks — including vendor solutions that offer ways to virtualize your data center entirely in the cloud.
Product picks: Amazon Virtual Private Cloud, VMware vSphere vShield Zones, ReliaCloud, Hexagrid VxDataCenter

Vendors are virtualizing more and more pieces of the data center and using virtual network switches — what VMware calles vShield Zones — to ensure that your network traffic never leaves the virtualized world but still retains nearly the same level of security found in your physical network. For example, you can set up firewalls that stay with the VMs as they migrate between hypervisors, create security policies and set up virtual LANs. Think of it as setting up a security perimeter around your virtual data center.

Amazon has been hard at work with Elastic Computing — its cloud-based, virtualization-hosted storage — and last summer added Virtual Private Cloud to its offerings (see Figure 3). This enables users to extend their VPNs to include the Amazon cloud, further mixing the physical and virtual network infrastructures. It’s also possible to extend any security device on your physical network to cover the Amazon cloud-based servers. The same is true with Amazon Web Services, where customers pay on a usage-only basis with no long-term contracts or commitments.

Microsoft has a series of new projects to extend its Windows Azure cloud-based computing to private clouds. They can be found at here and include ventures such as “Project Sydney,” which enables customers to securely link their on premises-based and cloud servers; AppFabric, which is a collection of existing Windows Azure developer components; and updates to Visual Studio 2010.

Some of these are, or soon will be, available in beta. But like other efforts, more federated security between the cloud and in-house servers will require improvements before these new offerings can be dependably used by most enterprises.

Two new entrants to the cloud computing services arena are Hexagrid Inc. and ReliaCloud, both of which offer a wide range of infrastructure services, including high availability, hardware firewalls and load balancing. With these companies, all cloud servers are assigned private IP addresses and have persistence, meaning that users treat them as real servers even though they’re residing in the cloud. Expect more vendors to offer these and other features that allow IT managers to combine physical and cloud resources.

9. Better application awareness of cloud-based services.
Product picks: Exchange 2010, Sparxent MailShadow
It isn’t just about networks in the cloud, but actual applications too, such as Microsoft Exchange services. The days are coming when you’ll be able to run an Exchange server on a remote data center and failover without anyone noticing. Part of this has to do with improvements Microsoft is making to the upcoming 2010 release of its popular e-mail server software. This also has to do with how the virtualization and third-party vendors are incorporating and integrating disaster recovery into their software offerings. An example of the latter is MailShadow from Sparxent Inc. This cloud-based service makes a “shadow” copy of each user’s Exchange mailbox that’s kept in constant synchronization. There are numerous cloud-based Exchange hosting providers that have offered their services over the past few years, and Microsoft is working on its own cloud-based solutions as well.

10. Start learning the high-end, metric system measurements of storage.
If you thought you knew the difference between gigabytes and terabytes, start boning up on the higher end of the metric scale. SAN management vendor DataCore Software Corp. now supports arrays that can contain up to a petabyte — a thousand terabytes — of data. Savvis sells 50GB increments of its SAN utility storage to its co-location customers, which Doerr says has been very well received. “It’s for customers that don’t want to run their own SANs or just want to run the compute-selected functions,” he states. “There’s a lot of variation across our customers. You have to be flexible if you want to win their business.” Given that it wasn’t too long ago when no one could purchase a 50GB hard drive, he says this shows that, “we’re going to be talking exabytes when it comes to describing our storage needs before too long.” Next up: zettabytes and yottabytes.


Virtual Servers, Real Growth

2017-07-27T00:01:09+00:00 July 12th, 2010|Uncategorized|


If you follow tech industry trends, you’ve probably heard of cloud computing, an increasingly popular approach of delivering technology resources over the Internet rather than from on-site computer systems.

Chances are, you’re less familiar with virtualization — the obscure software that makes it all possible.

The concept is simple: rather than having computers run a single business application — and sit idle most of the time — virtualization software divides a system into several “virtual” machines, all running software in parallel.

The technology not only squeezes more work out of each computer, but makes large systems much more flexible, letting data-center techies easily deploy computing horsepower where it’s needed at a moment’s notice.

The approach cuts costs, reducing the amount of hardware, space and energy needed to power up large data centers. Maintaining these flexible systems is easier, too, because managing software and hardware centrally requires less tech support.

The benefits of virtualization have made cloud computing an economical alternative to traditional data centers.

“Without virtualization, there is no cloud,” said Charles King, principal analyst of Pund-IT.

That’s transforming the technology industry and boosting the fortunes of virtualization pioneers such as VMware (NYSE:VMW – News), Citrix Systems (NMS:CTXS), two of the best-performing stocks in IBD’s specialty enterprise software group. As of Friday, the group ranked No. 24 among IBD’s 197 Industry Groups, up from No. 121 three months ago.

1. Business

Specialty enterprise software represents a small but fast-growing segment of the overall software enterprise market, which according to market research firm Gartner is set to hit $229 billion this year.

As with most software, the segment is a high-margin business. With high upfront development costs but negligible manufacturing and distribution expenses, specialty software companies strive for mass-market appeal. Once developers recoup their initial development costs, additional sales represent pure profit.

Software developers also make money helping customers install and run their software, another high-margin business.

But competition is fierce. Unlike capital-intensive businesses, software companies require no factory, heavy equipment, storefront or inventory to launch. Low barriers to entry mean a constant stream of new competitors looking to out-innovate incumbents.

In addition to the virtualization firms, notable names in the group include CA Technologies (NMS:CA) and Compuware (NMS:CPWR).

All offer infrastructure software to manage data centers.

“Big-iron” mainframe computers began using virtualization in the 1970s, around the time when CA and Compuware were founded.

In the late 1990s, VMware brought the technology to low-cost systems running ordinary Intel (NMS:INTC) chips. VMware has since emerged as the dominant player in virtualization.

Citrix has added a twist to the concept, virtualizing desktop computers. Rather than installing workers’ operating system and applications on hundreds of PCs spread across the globe, companies can use the technology to run PCs from a bank of central servers. Workers, who access their virtual PCs over the Internet, don’t know the difference.

Microsoft (NMS:MSFT) has jumped in with its own virtualization product, HyperV, which it bundles free into Windows Server software packages. Oracle (NMS:ORCL) and Red Hat (NYSE:RHT – News) have launched virtualization products as well.

Meanwhile, CA and Compuware are racing to move beyond their mainframe roots to support virtualization and cloud-computing-enabled data centers. In February, CA said it would buy 3Tera to build services and deploy applications aimed at the cloud-computing market.

And Compuware bought privately held Gomez, Inc. last fall to manage cloud application performance.

Name Of The Game: Innovate. With a fast-moving market and steady influx of new competitors, keeping customers happy with good service and money-saving breakthroughs is vital.

2. Market

Nearly everyone who runs a corporate computer system is a potential buyer of virtualization software. Companies ramping up their information-technology purchases use the software to manage their sprawling infrastructure; others with limited budgets use it to squeeze more out of their existing systems.

Sales of server-virtualization software are set to grow 14% this year to $1.28 billion, according to a report by Lazard Capital Markets. Sales of software to manage virtual environments will grow 44% in 2010 to $1.88 billion.

Desktop virtualization revenue will rise 184% this year to $847.8 million. Citrix has the edge in this budding market with its XenDesktop product.

VMware is dominant among large enterprises, controlling about 85% of the server virtualization market. Microsoft is favored by small and midsize companies.

Virtualization is seen as “a strategic asset” for enabling cloud computing, and continues to gain momentum, says Lazard analyst Joel Fishbein.

VMware has the early-mover advantage in this market with its vSphere platform and has stayed ahead by adding new features such as data security and disaster recovery, analysts say.

But Citrix is partnering closely with Microsoft to take on VMware in virtualization.

3. Climate

Competition is heating up as companies scramble to adopt virtualization. Before 2009, just 30% of companies used virtualization, says analyst Fishbein. This year, that will double to 60%. Most of the gain is coming from small and midsize customers.

In addition, virtual servers are soon expected to more than double as a percentage of the overall server workload, from 18% today to 48% by 2012.

VMware says it can stay a step ahead of the pack by building new features into its products, says Dan Chu, VMware’s vice president of cloud infrastructure and services.

“We have a large technology lead with what we enable for our customers,” Chu said. “We are several years ahead of what the others are doing.”

Citrix CEO Mark Templeton says his firm’s broadening strategy — offering a variety of products with multiple licensing options and distribution channels — will grow sales.

“What’s going on is a massive shift in how computing gets delivered,” Templeton said. “In an environment that’s changing so dramatically, the highest-risk thing you can do is not act.”

4. Technology

The first virtualization boom stemmed from a shift over the last decade away from big expensive mainframes and minicomputers to massive banks of cheap Intel-powered machines. Virtualization gave these low-cost systems some of the high-end features of their pricier counterparts.

Virtualization software makers are betting on a second wave of growth fueled by the industrywide shift to cloud computing.

Technology managers use virtualization to run cloud computing in their own data centers. And large tech vendors such as Microsoft use the technology for cloud-computing services they sell to customers.

Dividing computers into isolated virtual machines gives cloud service providers the benefits of shared computing resources without the security downsides.

VMware has the early lead in virtualization. But the technology is quickly becoming a commodity as Microsoft and others bundle it into their broader platforms.

“VMware is known as a virtualization company, and Microsoft is a platform company,” said David Greschler, who heads up Microsoft’s virtualization efforts. “Their strategy is to sell virtualization, but our strategy is to make virtualization available as part of a larger platform at no extra cost.”

At the same time, a shift toward a world of cloud-computing services hosted by the likes of Microsoft, (NMS:AMZN) and Google (NMS:GOOG) could lead to fewer companies purchasing virtualization software themselves.

Source: Investor’s Business Daily

Deliver Desktops as a Managed Service with VMware

2017-07-27T00:01:11+00:00 June 9th, 2010|Uncategorized|

Streamline Desktop Management and Deployment

Instantly provision desktops to local and remote users from the datacenter with VMware View. Standardize desktop deployments by creating images of approved desktops, then automatically provision as many as you need. Easily manage groups of users from a single desktop image. Delivering desktops as a managed service with VMware View typically lets you reduce your overall desktops costs by 50% by centralizing management and resources and removing IT infrastructure from remote offices.

Improve User Satisfaction

Provide a superior end-user desktop experience over any network, with VMware View with PCoIP, a high performance display protocol. Virtual desktop users can instantly access their personalized desktops, including data, applications and settings, from anywhere, without suffering the lag times of earlier technologies. Play rich media content, use multiple monitor configurations and seamlessly access attached peripherals.

Standardize Your Virtualization Platform

Enjoy a unified management experience through VMware View’s integration with VMware vSphere, the only virtualization platform tuned and optimized for desktops. Dynamically load balance virtual desktop machines to optimize computing resources. Power on thousands of desktops at once, without any performance degradation. Bring the power of the datacenter to the desktop and use a common platform to manage both servers and desktops from the datacenter to the cloud.

Easily Deliver Desktops to Remote Users

Deliver cost-effective virtual desktops and applications securely to call centers, government agencies, healthcare providers, branch campuses or offshore facilities. Give partner organizations and independent service providers temporary access to corporate desktops through a secure network connection. Perform maintenance and troubleshoot user issues without engaging in expensive on-site visits or maintaining remote IT staff and infrastructure. Deliver a high performance desktop experience to users—wherever they are.

Deliver Built-in Business Continuity for the Desktop

Meet work-from-home mandates in the event of quarantine or natural disaster with an emergency preparedness policy and VMware View 4, the only desktop virtualization solution that provides built-in business continuity and disaster recovery for the desktop at no additional cost.

Provide high availability for your desktops within your virtualized environment without the cost or complexity of traditional clustering solutions and back them up nightly in the datacenter as a business process. VMware View with VMware vSphere for Desktops lets you extend enterprise features such as VMotion, High Availability and Distributed Resources Scheduler to the desktop, ensuring an “always on” desktop. With VMware View you can:

  • Let your desktops take advantage of key features in the vSphere platform such as VMotion, High Availability, Dynamic Resource Scheduler and Consolidated Backup.
  • Access virtual desktop from a wide variety of devices over any network connection to ensure business continuity.
  • Quickly provision virtual desktops to remote users or groups of users in the event of a pandemic or catastrophic event when it is difficult for workers to access the office.
  • Keep desktops running even when server hardware goes down with automated failover and recovery.
  • Shift desktop computing resources automatically as user needs and application loads change with dynamic load balancing.
  • Give remote users a high performance desktop experience with VMware View with PCoIP while protecting access to sensitive data.

Ensure Security with Centralized Control and Management

Protect your organization’s information assets and ensure compliance with industry and government regulations such as HIPAA, SOX, government mandates on settings for PCs and more with desktop virtualization. VMware desktop virtualization solutions enable enterprises to secure data, centralize control of desktops and software access and maintain compliance without sacrificing end user needs.

Ensure Corporate Security Compliance with End User Restricted Entitlements

Ensure appropriate access for end users with specified credentials by restricting access to desktops based on the authentication method. For some business environments, this may mean, for example, you can allow access only to users who have authenticated with a smart card. VMware desktop virtualization solutions are modular by design, enabling integration with 3rd party software to allow for further extension of security requirements.

Maintain Locked-down Desktops without Restricting Application Access

VMware virtualized applications run entirely in user mode and can be deployed to fully locked down desktops. No administrative rights are needed to execute these virtualized applications. Additionally, applications can be encapsulated in a fully encrypted file for deployment. IT staff can be assured security compliance needs are met while enabling end users to easily and safely access business critical applications.

Manage and Track Software Application Usage & Deployment

Monitor software license usage and ensure compliance with vendors without imposing new process or enforcement tools. VMware desktop virtualization solutions provide out-of-the-box integrations with existing policy-based usage mechanisms such as Active Directory and LDAP. VMware View seamlessly plugs into existing management frameworks for discovery of software assets and systems, so you can use your existing monitoring and distribution tools to maintain single-pane-of-glass control of software license compliance.

Decouple hardware, applications and operating systems to eliminate compatibility issues during OS migrations and upgrades. Get the benefits of newer platforms without paying heavy support costs to test and troubleshoot integration issues. Run a single image of a new operating system across a variety of hardware types. Encapsulate older applications and even run multiple versions of the same application side by side.

Source: VMware

Windows 7 Migration – Using App Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:11+00:00 April 7th, 2010|Uncategorized|

Windows 7 will impose many challenges to organizations having to migrate to this new operating system. Ensure application compatibility of your mission critical desktop applications using VMware ThinApp to virtualize applications. Then centralize and simplify desktop management using VMware View and virtualize your complete desktop environment.

  • Virtualize your desktop applications with VMware ThinApp to build in compatibility
  • Virtualize your desktops with VMware View for centralized management of your user environment
  • Ensure delivery of the best user experience with VMware View PCoIP

Minimize the Cost and Disruption of Windows 7 Migration

Get the benefits of upgrading to Windows 7 without endless testing and troubleshooting of integration issues.

IT organizations are faced with the daunting task of having to migrate their desktop environment to Windows 7 as Windows XP support approaches its end and Windows XP availability squeezed with impending complex licensing.

But upgrading 100s or 1000s of desktop devices is costly and time consuming. Windows XP applications will not automatically be compatible with Windows 7. For example Web-based apps that work great on Internet Explorer 6, may not run on Internet Explorer 8 with Windows 7. Additionally, many organizations have custom applications driving their businesses, recoding and recertification their applications for Windows 7 is a time-consuming and costly endeavor. Most of them will have to rely on external vendors to provide the new compatible applications. And the clock is ticking.

Start the transition to Windows 7 today by virtualizing your existing Windows applications with VMware ThinApp. Application virtualization removes the dependency of applications from the underlying operating system so you can run a single application across multiple Windows operating systems. This helps to streamline application migration, ease the burden of cost and complexity for IT and create a seamless transition for end users.

Once your applications are virtualized, consider moving to a complete Virtual Desktop environment using VMware View and further separate the operating system from the underlying hardware and deliver as a secure managed service from the datacenter.

Separate desktop environments from the underlying hardware and run a single image of the operating system on a variety of machines with VMware View. Desktop operating systems, applications and data can be isolated and managed independently in the datacenter.

The VMware virtual desktop solution lets you:

  • Minimize costly application porting and reduce regression testing
  • Reduce conflicts and support calls by providing application isolation and portability using VMware ThinApp, an integral part of VMware View
  • Deliver next generation desktop architecture with modular desktops
  • Enhance image and application management
  • Extend the life of your application and hardware to maximize and protect your investment

Minimize Costly Regression Testing

Applications virtualized with VMware ThinApp are contained in single image formats such as .EXE and .MSI. These images can simply be deployed to end point device or delivered as a secure managed service using View. There is no need for costly deployment downtime and disruption to end user activities.

Since virtualized applications are fully isolated images that do not require installation and commit no changes to the registry, this removes any potential conflict that can be introduced to the environment and greatly reduces the need for regression testing.

You can even deploy a single image of an application to multiple OS versions. Complete a company-wide Windows 7 migration quickly and easily, without costly application porting and lengthy regression testing. Using VMware desktop virtualization, you will:

  • Run a single image of the Windows 7 OS across your virtual environment on a variety of hardware types
  • Maintain user productivity by enabling Windows 7 migration across many systems without rebooting
  • Reduce management costs and power consumption by encapsulating older systems and running them in a more efficient, server-based environment
  • Ensure application compatibility on all endpoint devices


Fast to Deployment and Minimize Support Demand on IT

Migrating an entire desktop environment to a new operating system is a time-consuming and costly endeavor for IT and a disruptive event for end users. With VMware desktop virtualization solutions, you can continue to deliver the same applications your end users are accustomed to along with their profiles to Windows 7 quickly and seamlessly. By first virtualizing the applications with VMware ThinApp into single image files, then using VMware View to virtualize the desktops and isolating the desktop environment from the OS. The resulting combined stack helps IT to streamline deployments of both applications and virtual desktops to end point devices. The virtualized applications and desktop environments eliminate direct dependencies on the underlying Windows 7 environment. This helps to reduce conflicts and reduces demand on IT and helpdesk support.

  • Maximize worker productivity and dramatically reduce support calls and maintenance overhead with VMware View. Images of the desktops reside in the datacenter and are deployed to each end user‘s machine. Virtualizing applications isolates them from the OS so they remain unaffected during OS upgrades and migrations, lessening support costs and frustration.
  • Eliminate conflicts and reduce helpdesk support calls.
  • Migrate application and desktop as a single “stack” to minimize disruptive end user downtime.

Source: VMware

VMware Go™ — the Quick and Easy On-ramp to Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 February 3rd, 2010|Uncategorized|

VMware Go is a free web-based service that lets users virtualize their servers with just a few mouse clicks, providing an easy on-ramp for companies new to virtualization. VMware Go guides users through the installation and configuration of the industry-leading hypervisor, VMware ESXi.

VMware Go Dramatically Simplifies and Accelerates Virtualization Into Three Simple Steps

  1. Initial ESXi server setup
    • Unique web-browser interface and intuitive wizard guides and accelerates installation and setup process
    • Built in hardware compatibility check automates the process of selecting physical server environments
  2. Virtual machine creation
    • Leverage existing physical server configuration, install a prebuilt virtual appliance, or start with a new clean virtual machine.
  3. Manage ESXi servers and virtual machines
    • Centralized management interface simplifies changes to a virtual environment.
    • Monitor virtual machines for basic performance and resource utilization.
    • Scan and update virtual machines from a central console.


VMware Leverages VMware vSphere(TM) Platform, New PCoIP Protocol and Rich Partner Ecosystem to Deliver Complete Desktop as a Managed Service Solution

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 November 9th, 2009|Uncategorized|

vmware_logoVMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), the global leader in virtualization solutions from the desktop through the datacenter and to the cloud, today announced VMware View(TM) 4, enabling rapid adoption of virtualized desktops and establishing a desktop as a managed service model. VMware View(TM) 4 is the industry’s only purpose-built desktop virtualization solution, setting a new quality, cost and scale standard for desktop virtualization environments. Built on VMware vSphere(TM), the industry’s leading virtualization platform, VMware View 4 is a complete desktop virtualization solution featuring a rich, flexible desktop user experience while delivering dramatic efficiency, security, performance, scalability and management improvements — all while reducing desktop total cost of ownership by as much as 50 percent.

Desktop virtualization has long remained a top IT goal because of the added security, manageability and compliance capabilities delivered. Adoption, however, has been limited due to high acquisition costs, insufficient user experience, scalability issues and limitations on the use cases that could benefit from virtualized desktops. With VMware View 4, VMware and its ecosystem of partners eliminate these barriers, enabling broader, mainstream enterprise adoption of desktop virtualization. (more…)

Business Infrastructure Virtualization

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 25th, 2009|Uncategorized|

VMware diagram_freeupmoneyGive IT a break. Imagine the day when IT can shift its focus from maintenance to driving efficiency and innovation — and help grow the business. And imagine doing this while fully optimizing financial resources throughout IT, shifting human energy and conserving the earth’s energy. 

Rest assured. VMware gets you there. From the datacenter to the desktop, out to the cloud, VMware delivers the world’s most trusted, flexible and dynamic solutions for Business Infrastructure Virtualization.

Only VMware is the proven leader in virtualization. How can we say that? The proof is in the numbers.

  • 89% of all virtualized applications in the world run on our software.
  • All 100 of the Fortune 100 companies use our software.
  • Over 150,000 customers rely on our industry-leading virtualization platform.

Our proven solutions can help you reduce capital and operating expenses, boost efficiency, improve agility, ensure business continuity and strengthen security. From the datacenter to the desktop to the cloud, VMware delivers the world’s most trusted, flexible and dynamic solutions for Business Infrastructure Virtualization.

Most business infrastructures today are complex and rigid, preventing IT from being able to keep up with business demands. Why bog down IT resources in routine maintenance tasks? Let IT staff focus on delivering services that drive business agility.

With VMware Business Infrastructure Virtualization solutions, IT organizations can:

  • Optimize financial energy by reducing capital and datacenter costs to get more done with less. VMware virtualization can reduce capital costs by as much as 60 percent.
  • Shift human energy from servicing hardware to driving the business. VMware virtualization reduces time spent on routine administrative tasks by about a third.
  • Save the Earth’s energy by using less power, cooling and real estate, and using it more wisely. VMware virtualization reduces power, cooling and real estate needs in the datacenter, cutting energy costs by up to 80 percent.

The Business Value of Virtualization from Forrester Consulting

Virtualization isn’t just a hot technology; it’s a valuable business solution that increases IT efficiency and makes IT services more predictable according to this study from Forrester Consulting. Find out why virtualization is the top spending priority for executives and how they are achieving a full return on their investment in less than 12 months with VMware. Download the whitepaper.

Transform Your Business with VMware

Today’s economic times are transforming the way we do business, and information technology is critical to keeping pace with these changes. Simply put, business agility depends more than ever on IT agility. This vision paper explains how VMware is helping thousands of customers transform the way they do business by making it possible to virtualize all IT assets—from the desktop to the datacenter and into the cloud—using a common platform to design sustainable IT solutions based on a flexible architecture that provides unprecedented support for business goals. Download the vision paper.


New VMware CTO tasked with developing desktop virtualization vision

2017-07-27T00:01:12+00:00 October 1st, 2009|Uncategorized|

vmware-large-logoVMware is perhaps best known today for its VMware ESX server virtualization technology. It is what has helped VMware become synonymous with the virtual datacenter. But 10 years ago the company was probably regarded as a desktop virtualization company. VMware ESX was still in alpha back then, and it wasn’t until a year or so later, with the 1.5 release, that the ESX product had any real legs under it. The company’s Workstation product, on the other hand, was doing quite well; for many, this is where we got our start with the concept of virtualizing on an x86 machine.

VMware still has a number of products for the desktop platform. Workstation, which installs and operates on top of a Linux or Windows operating system, is around and doing quite well, and it’s often used as a proving ground for new technologies making their way up to the server-class products. VMware also introduced a popular sister product for the Mac OS called Fusion, and the company has other products, like Player and ACE, as well as a VDI broker technology now called VMware View. VMware branched out into the application virtualization market with its acquisition of Thinstall (the product is now called VMware ThinApp), but even with all of these other technologies, VMware ESX and vSphere are still the dominant topics of discussion.

But perhaps VMware is now ready to start focusing more on the desktop market while it continues to push forward with its virtual datacenter and cloud story. Where is it planning on taking the desktop? To answer that, we look to Scott Davis, the new CTO of the Desktop Business Unit at VMware. Davis was previously the chief datacenter architect in VMware’s CTO office, and before that, some of you may remember him in the day when he was the president, CTO, and founder of Virtual Iron Software

[4], now acquired by Oracle.

Davis will have his hands full trying to build out a cohesive desktop story and business unit at VMware. With the huge success and uptake that VMware ESX server has had, the desktop technologies at VMware have been second-class citizens. However, Davis has quite a list of interesting technologies with which to set about changing that belief. The question becomes, what will he do with those technologies and what is his vision for the future? In his introductory blog post over at VMware View-Point [5], Davis writes:

VMware’s vision for client or desktop computing is to use virtualization technologies to encapsulate and isolate all the aspects of the desktop.  Make each aspect independently manageable, duplicate-able, recreate-able.  Employee-Owned IT?  Separate into different virtual machines. Lost, broken or obsolete device?  Throw it away, the VM is preserved in the datacenter and can be redeployed at will.

I want the freedom that comes with complete separation between my physical devices and all my software.  I want device independence; my applications, my data, my personality dynamically composited and encapsulated executing on the optimal device(s) for my  current time and location.  That may mean collocating layers on the same device or distributing across multiple systems.  I want isolation; my personal and professional applications, run-time and data isolated and encapsulated, accessible via the internet, mobile devices, thin and thick clients.  With client virtualization I want the display, the computes and the storage intelligently and automatically placed – sometimes it’s better to execute the workload in the datacenter and virtualize the graphics to a client.  Other times, I want to take the whole workload with me and run it on a laptop.  Or something in between.  And why stop there?  We’re also doing best of breed virtualization for isolation and encapsulation between all relevant boundaries – that’s why we have ThinApp for application virtualization and continue to invest in advancing that technology.  And why we announced at VMworld our relationship with RTO to make use of their profile caching and replication technology in our solutions.  And why we partner with Teradici to jointly bring solutions to market based on the best in class remote graphics protocol designed explicitly for virtualized desktops.  And there’s a lot more coming!

VMware is calling this new desktop vision “User-Centric Computing” and describes it as “the intersection of our virtualization technologies, management platform, and the demands of client computing.”

Davis sums up his belief: “As has been proven for servers, virtual desktops are really better than physical ones. And that’s our viewpoint!”

He certainly doesn’t have to convince me or this audience that the virtual is better than the physical. Most of us are like-minded, or we wouldn’t be here. However, Davis’ group has a long way to go to give us a clear, cohesive, unified view of where the company is going. His vision statement is a good start, but there are still way too many questions left unanswered and VMware’s desktop vision has been without a voice for way too long. I look forward to seeing what Davis has up his sleeve.

Source: By David Marshall

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