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Managing a company's IT infrastructure is a complicated task. When administrators have to maintain separate machines for Web servers, databases, file storage, and network management, it starts to feel like wandering through a maze. Genisys Group can help you find a simpler approach through hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI).

Virtualizing everything

The basic idea of HCI is the use of commodity hardware throughout, with virtualization of all functions. Everything is virtualized. All the hardware is interchangeable. Not only the computing, but the storage and network functions are virtual units rather than separate boxes. An HCI cluster can define any number of servers and file systems, which aren't restricted by hardware lines.

Expanding the network's capacity is just a matter of adding more general-purpose modules. Dividing it into subnets is just as easy. The network's architecture is all defined in software.

This approach saves money when building up the network. There's no need to buy specialized systems for different purposes.

Scalability

With separate computing, networking, and storage components, scaling up is clumsy. You're likely to end up with too much of one capability and not enough of another. When you add commodity components to a hyper-converged installation, you have more fine-grained control over scaling. You can add a machine which is heavy on processing power, one which has lots of storage capacity, or one which is strong on both. You just plug it in and add it to the cluster.

You can repurpose systems as necessary, just by changing the configuration. It's a simple matter to add one or more virtual machines whenever they're needed.

Fault tolerance

If you have a central database machine and it goes down, you've got a problem. There's a big hole in your productivity till you get it fixed. Failover systems will avoid downtime in those situations, but they add to the cost. If one machine in an HCI cluster fails, you just pull it out to fix or replace. Its backed-up data moves to the systems which are still running. The infrastructure keeps working at reduced capacity.

Software-defined datacenters

HCI lets you run all your services from a single console. There's no need for a separate SAN or NAS to manage data storage. You can set up an easily managed software-defined datacenter. The management task is much simpler than with an array of hardware appliances from different vendors.

Maintenance costs are lower. The money saved can go to increased capacity or to other parts of IT. The ease of expansion makes the datacenter more agile. New services can be added quickly. Read more about software-defined datacenters.

Opportunities for automation

Unifying and virtualizing all systems under a single point of management makes it easier for all the pieces to work together. Getting separate machines for each function to talk to each other takes extra work. HCI lets managers automate processes in ways that are clumsy or impossible with a hardware device for each service. This results in more efficient workflows and less need for manual intervention.

A private cloud

Hyper-converged architectures are a good fit for public or private clouds. A business can set up an HCI-based private cloud for services where it's the best fit. There are several cases where private, on-premises clouds are better than public services:

  • Policy or regulatory requirements mandate keeping the data on-premises for security reasons.

  • Low latency is necessary, so the hardware needs to be close by.

  • Frequent changes require a hands-on approach.

Widely used cloud platforms are compatible with HCI and are easy to set up.

Finding the best solution

Each business's needs are different. Is a hyper-converged infrastructure the best solution to your IT problems? Is a public cloud or a dedicated server a better approach in your case? Whatever your requirements, Genisys Group will help you to find the best hardware and software to make your business run efficiently.

Resources

  • Pentagon signs $10 Billion Cloud Computing Contract with Microsoft.

    On Friday, October 25, the US Department of Defense announced that Microsoft had won the Pentagon’s large cloud computing contract for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) project. Under the terms of this agreement, the Pentagon is intended to invest $10 billion in the development of cloud infrastructure and the launch of various services, including IaaS (infrastructure as a service) and PaaS (platform as a service) solutions that will help the agency to analyze and process large amounts of confidential military data.

  • Most data center managers rely on outdated security practices, according to Data Center Knowledge

    An increasingly growing number of news messages reporting widely discussed computer network hacks and massive credential leaks highlight the problems associated with using passwords for security. Users either choose simple easy-to-guess passwords or tend to use the same password every time there is a need to come up with something more complex. And it’s easy to see why: nobody wants to stuff their memory with long sophisticated passwords.

  • SAP and Microsoft expand their cloud collaboration

    On Monday October 21, SAP and Microsoft announced a new collaboration that is aligned with their mutual goal to facilitate the process of driving enterprise customers’ operations to the cloud. Through the partnership dubbed Project Embrace, the companies intend to accelerate and simplify customer adoption of SAP S/ 4HANA and SAP Cloud Platform on the Microsoft Azure cloud. Microsoft will sell components of SAP Cloud Platform alongside Azure.

  • Hitachi Vantara VSP 5500: the world’s fastest data storage

    Hitachi Vantara, an enterprise storage array business, has announced the addition of the VSP 5000 series to its premium storage line-up. The company claims this launch to be the world’s fastest solution of its kind. Currently, the series includes two models: the VSP 5100 and the more capacious VSP 5500.

Questions?

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