VCE Expands/Extends its Vblock Converged Infrastructure Portfolio

By Charles King, Pund-IT, Inc.  October 6, 2014

VCE unveiled new and updated Vblock Systems, integrated solutions and technology extensions that are designed to deliver greater IT flexibility, agility and simplicity for the company’s global enterprise and service provider customers. The new and updated Vblock offerings are orderable today and include:

  • The new Vblock System 240, a complete converged infrastructure system for medium-sized businesses and distributed remote/branch offices (ROBO) that require a minimal-scale, high-performance infrastructure solution
  • The new Vblock System 540, the industry’s first all-flash-based converged infrastructure system for high-performance mixed workloads and emerging third platform applications, including cloud, big data, mobile and social. The Vblock System 540 is powered by next-generation Cisco Unified Computing, Cisco Nexus ACI-Ready networking and EMC XtremIO all-flash storage
  • The new Vblock System 740, VCE’s flagship converged infrastructure, is designed to deliver unmatched performance, capacity and availability for mission-critical applications. Featuring the latest Cisco Unified Computing, Cisco Nexus ACI-Ready networking and EMC VMAX 3 storage technologies, the Vblock System 740 delivers 3X storage performance and 2X SAN bandwidth of previous VCE systems

The company is also delivering two new integrated solutions for cloud management:

  1. VCE Integrated Solution for Cloud Management with Cisco provides pre-integrated, pre-tested and pre-validated software for infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and virtual resource provisioning based on Cisco’s UCS Director.
  2. VCE Integrated Solution for Cloud Management with VMware provides pre-integrated, pre-tested and pre-validated software from the VMware vRealize cloud management software, including VMware vCloud Automation Center and vCenter Operations Management Suite.

VCE’s new Technology Extensions are designed to bring the VCE Experience to a broader set of use cases and customer environments. The first of these new solutions are:

  • VCE Technology Extension for EMC Isilon storage integrates powerful scale-out storage with a Vblock System to cost-effectively consolidate and manage enterprise data and applications, and to support large-scale data environments.
  • VCE Technology Extension for Cisco UCS compute utilizes Cisco technology to drive compute-intensive applications, such as powering specialized imaging and graphics processing workloads.

The Pitch

VCE expands its converged system concepts, capabilities and market opportunities.

Final Analysis

The IT industry contains more than its share of what, despite respectable lineage, experienced riders and superb dressage, are essentially one-trick ponies. You know the type – typically good, even admirable technologies pressed into situations and services that are simply beyond their inherent abilities. The shame isn’t in the way they eventually perform but in the fact that someone put them where they don’t really belong. It’s a bit like running a Clydesdale in the Kentucky Derby or asking a two-year-old thoroughbred to pull a beer wagon.

But there are also solutions whose flexible, best of breed architectures and synergistic capabilities deliver consistent winning results wherever they run. These offerings can be designed, developed and deployed to effectively address a wide range of enterprise tasks and processes, and are the antithesis of the faltering nags that some vendors claim are ready for the winner’s circle. VCE’s Vblock solutions are among the best examples of this group.

Consider the latest additions to the company’s solutions portfolio. The System 240 and 740 significantly extend the capabilities and use cases of the company’s Vblock System 200 and 700 lines. The former is designed to help VCE customers extend the value of Vblock solutions to their remote and branch office locations, while the latter delivers a significant performance boost (via EMC storage and Cisco SAN innovations) to the company’s flagship converged system platform.

In a different vein, the Vblock System 540 provides clear evidence of the value of VCE’s best of breed strategy by joining the flash-based goodness of EMC’s market-leading XtremIO flash storage with Cisco’s newest generation UCS and Nexus technologies. The result is a Vblock ready to take on both demanding high-performance enterprise workloads and emerging big data, cloud, mobile and social applications. Once again, VCE delivers on its goal of helping customers solve current problems, while preparing them for future challenges.

The company’s new integrated solutions for cloud management and Technology Extensions highlight different aspects of this same approach. In the first case, VCE is aiming to ease the uncertainties and complexities inherent in hybrid cloud adoption and deployment. In proactively pre-integrating Cisco’s and VMware’s cloud management solutions with Vblock Systems, VCE is also simplifying the automation of data center provisioning and orchestration tasks. By doing so, the company is markedly reducing the risks and speed the benefits of private and hybrid cloud transformation.

VCE’s Technology Extensions qualify as a variation on the broadening of use cases evident in the new System 540. By integrating EMC’s Isilon solutions with Vblocks, VCE is enabling customers to apply the market’s leading scale-out storage platform to existing and emerging workloads. Those include Isilon’s current sweet spots, like supporting petabyte-scale archives for rich media and general purpose files, along with large scale VDI deployments. But VCE is also positioning Vblock Systems with Isilon to be used as highly effective engines for powering enterprise data lakes and big data applications leveraging Hadoop.

The technology extension for Cisco UCS compute supports performance-intensive workloads via optional NVIDIA technologies. Those features significantly expand Vblock graphics acceleration and compute capabilities, allowing VCE solutions to support performance-sensitive applications, including financial and medical transaction processing, animation and video processing, medical image processing and seismic processing for oil and gas exploration.

In essence, Vblock Systems qualify as a very best-of-breed converged systems architecture that can be adapted to virtually any enterprise IT need, making them anything but one-trick ponies. VCE’s new and enhanced offerings demonstrate why it continues to set the pace for converged systems and regularly wins the race for the goodwill and business of enterprise customers.

© 2014 Pund-IT, Inc. All rights reserved.