122434356Today’s IT news articles, especially those attempting to snag the focus and attention of the CXO, notoriously toss around buzzwords and marketing banter in hopes that you’ll listen to their message and buy into their product. One of the hot buzzwords going around right now is “convergence” or any variation thereof (e.g. converged or hyper-converged infrastructure, unified computing, dynamic infrastructure, etc.). But is it really something you should be paying attention to?

History lessons

The answer to that question relies on historical perspective. For over a decade, vendors and business partners have touted the increasing costs of infrastructure management as the largest portion of IT spend for companies of all sizes. I should know—I preached that message for almost a decade myself, largely because it’s true. The issue stems from our previous IT business tactic of siloing various infrastructure components (servers, storage, networking) under different federations, even to the point of breaking those silos into still smaller silos of management (e.g. UNIX, Windows, applications, database). Eventually we created an unwieldy infrastructure management with fiefdoms of control, each competing for the same IT spend and creating a series of unnecessary strains in the business, when what you really need are agility, speed, flexibility and simplicity. Simply put: we could not continue to do business this way.

In this silo model, innovation has taken a backseat to daily management, increased volumes of meetings and briefings, and reduced the CFO to being the judge at the end of a debate having to declare winners and losers based on available funding. Clearly, this hurts business operations.

Enter hyper-convergence

While the term “hyper-convergence” is fairly new, the concepts are not. The idea is to collapse as much infrastructure as possible—practically and intelligently—into a singular device or appliance, and then integrate the right software stack. The goals include reducing complexity, design and architectural development time; speeding time-to-market; and improving SLAs. You could say that the advent of blade computing and the evolution of virtualization and virtualization management were components of “Convergence 1.0,” but the concept has matured far beyond that.

Today’s hyper-converged solutions, such as those delivered by Nutanix, combine two or more of these elements into one rack-mounted appliance, with the necessary management and software delivery features to provide your business with increased agility, elasticity, flexibility, control, visibility and modularity. The most efficient data centers in the world, like Google, Amazon and eBay, are huge, efficient, and even exciting! Now, imagine you could take a piece of the Google infrastructure design, and drop it into your data center’s infrastructure as a building block that is repeatable and modular. This is what hyper-converged infrastructure offers.

Companies like Nutanix are providing such capabilities for businesses of nearly all sizes, and these building blocks are being used to solve all of today’s most common business problems. They are the foundation of solutions for IT challenges such as virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), big data analytics, hosting solutions for providers, private cloud initiatives, remote-office/branch-office (ROBO) solutions, business continuity/disaster recovery (BCDR), and more. And they are improving management, visibility and control, increasing energy-efficiency, reducing physical footprints, improving reliability and uptime, and drastically improving time-to-market and delivery for businesses and applications.

Nutanix Virtual Computing Platform (VCP) appliances are built on Web-scale technologies such as those employed by Google, and designed to keep your business running efficiently and effectively while providing a near-infinitely scalable solution that will grow with your business needs. Since Nutanix supports all of the key hypervisors of today’s IT stack, it’s possible to migrate to a Nutanix hyper-converged solution without drastic redesign or redeployment of critical applications. Nutanix’s linear scalability provides business with predictable, reliable performance from initial acquisition on into the Nth acquisition.

Reduce complexity, increase innovation, and improve business agility and performance

With Nutanix VCP nodes deployed across the infrastructure, one can visualize, control, deploy and even automate many day-to-day functions of an IT manager, allowing the entire IT management team to focus on areas where they can add value, such as business innovation and strategic business development. They let you:

  • Reduce or eliminate siloing
  • Spend less on overall systems management
  • Develop new ways to do business while ensuring that existing business processes continue operating at expected performance levels
  • Spend less time patching, and more time delivering

That’s a recipe for growing business, and it’s how hyper-converged solutions can work for your IT infrastructure.

Click here to visit the Converged Infrastructure page on siriuscom.com, or contact Sirius for more information.

Join us for our next Sirius Thinking webinar on November 18, 2:00 p.m. CST entitled “IT Transformation Made Possible with Web-Scale Converged Infrastructure.” Attend this this informative webinar to learn about the key components of a software-led infrastructure and hear insight on why traditional converged solutions are falling short; what separates enterprise converged solutions in today’s market; and the next generation of converged solutions, known as software-led infrastructure.