Hyper-Converged, Hype it is Not

By Camberley Bates, Monday, June 29th 2015

Analyst Blogs

Overview and Considerations for Hyper-Converged SystemsIn July we host  Hyper-Converged Webinar Summit in conjunction with SNIA (plus speakers from Intel, HP and Nutanix). Since we launched our Hyper-Converged coverage in March, it has been the highest requested research area from IT end users. Hyper-Converged (HC) is hot, but not because of super advanced technology or the hype. It’s because of the potential it has to simplify and streamline IT. As we talked about in our launch, there are three primary use cases and a fourth rising star. Note: it is important to review your options based on use cases, as HC appliances do not fit all use cases.

Small-Medium Businesses (SMB) are replacing the gear on the floor with a combination of HC and SaaS. For the SMB, simplification is critical. With HC they have one system to manage, with one user interface for the parts and pieces (server, network, storage, virtualized). SMB staff is usually limited, wearing all the different hats at the same time. Thus simplifying infrastructure means there are more staff resources for the things that have impact, like application development.

Remote Office / Branch Office. This is a no-brainer! For anyone who has rolled-out 1000+ offices or had to manage upgrades and patches, having a single integrated system that can be easily managed at the home office has huge cost savings. Among the Hyper-Converged vendors, there are several that are uniquely positioned for this space based on their capabilities, especially their centralized management and availability features.

VDI, aka Client Virtualization. While we still hold that most VDI implementations should use all flash arrays, there are instances where a Hyper-Converged appliance will make sense. Small, less intense workloads can do well on these appliances. IT end users need to make sure to test and prove the performance for their workloads, or you will end up with un-happy users.

The up and coming use case is Web-scale or in some cases called Private Cloud. As enterprise data centers examine how to deploy the private cloud they are evaluating three deployment models:

  • Build your own with commodity hardware and OpenStack,
  • Use known and trusted vendors to build-out the environment with standard gear,
  • Hyper-Converged, simplified, all-in-one systems.

There are HC systems ready to take on scale in the enterprise and have worked to mimic Google like environments. Each of the HC offerings has some draw backs (make sure you understand issues such as upgrades, use of external storage, management, etc.) Expect to see vendors enter this space, as this use case has even further potential than the other three.

If you want more on the use cases or more info on the vendors in the market, join us on July 21st. Or of course you can become a subscriber and for a more complete level of details.

More information

Evaluator Group Research on Hyper-Converged

Hyper-Converged Summit

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