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Server Storage I/O Data Infrastructures | @CloudExpo #SDN #AI #DataCenter
Data Infrastructures exist to support business, cloud and information technology (IT)

HPE Continues Buying into Server Storage I/O Data Infrastructures

This past week HPE continued buying into server storage I/O data infrastructure technologies announcing an all cash (e.g., no stock) acquisition of Nimble Storage (NMBL). The cash acquisition for a little over $1B USD amounts to $12.50 USD per Nimble share, double what it had traded at. As a refresh, or overview, Nimble is an all flash shared storage system leverage NAND flash solid storage device (SSD) performance. Note that Nimble also partners with Cisco and Lenovo platforms that compete with HPE servers for converged systems.

Earlier this year (keep in mind its only mid-March) HPE also announced acquisition of server storage Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) vendor Simplivity (about $650M USD cash). In another investment this year HPE joined other investors as part of scale out and software defined storage startups Hedvig latest funding round (more on that later). These acquisitions are in addition to smaller ones such as last years buying of SGI, not to mention various divestures.

Data Infrastructures

What Are Data Infrastructures
Data Infrastructures exists to support business, cloud and information technology (IT) among other applications that transform data into information or services. The fundamental role of data infrastructures is to give a platform environment for applications and data that is resilient, flexible, scalable, agile, efficient as well as cost-effective.

Technologies that make up data infrastructures include hardware, software, cloud or managed services, servers, storage, I/O and networking along with people, processes, policies along with various tools spanning legacy, software-defined virtual, containers and cloud.

HPE and Server Storage Acquisitions
HPE and its predecessor HP (e.g. before the split that resulted in HPE) was familiar with expanding its data infrastructure portfolio spanning servers, storage, I/O networking, hardware, software and services. These range from Compaq who acquired DEC which gave them the StorageWorks brand and product line up (e.g. recall EVA and its predecessors), Lefthand, 3PAR, IBRIX, Polyserve, Autonomy, EDS and others that I'm guessing some at HPE (along with customers and partners) might not want to remember.

In addition to their own in-house including via technology acquisition, HPE also partners for its entry-level and volume low-end MSA (Modular Storage Array) series with DotHill who was acquired by Seagate a year or so ago. In addition to the MSA, other HPE OEMs for storage include Hitachi Ltd. (e.g. parent of Hitachi Data Systems aka HDS) reselling their high-end enterprise class storage system as the XP7, as well as various other partner arrangements.

Keep in mind that HPE has a large server business from low to high-end, spanning towers to dense blades to dual, quad and cluster in box (CiB) configurations with various processor architectures. Some of these servers are used as platforms for not only HPE, also other vendors software defined storage, as well as tin wrapped software solutions, appliances and systems. HPE is also one of a handful of partners working with Microsoft to bring the software defined private (and hybrid) Azure Stack cloud stack as an appliance to market.

HPE Acquisitions Deja vu or Something New?
For some people there may be a sense of Dejavu of what HPE and its predecessors have previously acquired, developed, sold and supported into the market over years (and decades in some cases). What will be interesting to see is how the 3PAR (StoreServ) and Lefthand based (StoreVirtual) as well as ConvergedSystem 250-HC product lines are realigned to make way for Nimble and Simplivity.

Likewise what will HPE do with MSA at the low-end, continue to leverage it for low-end and high-volume basic storage similar to Dell with the Netapp/Engenio powered MD series? Or will HPE try to move the Nimble down market and displace the MDS? What about in the mid-market, will Nimble be unleashed to replace StoreVirtual (e.g. Lefthand), or will they fence it in (e.g., being restricted to certain scenarios?
Will the Nimble solution be allowed to move up market into the low-end of where 3PAR has been positioned, perhaps even higher up given its all flash capabilities. Or, will there be a 3PAR everywhere approach?

Then there is Simplivity as the solution is effectively software running on an HPE server (or with other partners Cisco and Lenovo) along with a PCIe offload card (with Simplivity data services acceleration). Note that Simplivity leverages PCIe offload cards for some of their functionality, this too is familiar ground for HPE given its ASIC use by 3PAR.

Simplivity has the potential to disrupt some low to mid-range, perhaps even larger opportunities that are looking to go to a converged infrastructure (CI) or HCI deployment as part of their data infrastructure needs. One can speculate that Simplivity after repackaging will be positioned along current HPE CI and HCI solutions.

This will be interesting to watch to see if the HPE server and storage groups can converge not only from a technology point, also sales, marketing, service, and support perspective. With the Simplivity solution, HPE has an opportunity to move the industry thinking or perception that HCI is only for small environments defined by what some products can do.

What I mean by this is that HPE with its enterprise and SMB along with SME and cloud managed service provider experience as well as servers can bring hyper-scale out (and up) converged to the market. In other words, start addressing the concern I hear from larger organizations that most CI or HCI solutions (or packaging) are just for smaller environments. HPE has the servers, they have the storage from MSAs to other modules and core data infrastructure building blocks along with the robustness of the Simplivity software to enable hyper-scale out CI.

What about bulk, object, scale-out storage
HPE has a robust tape business, yes I know tape is dead, however tell that to the customers who keep buying products providing revenue along with margin to HPE (and others). Likewise HPE has VTLs as well as other solutions for addressing bulk data (e.g. big data, backups, protection copies, archives, high volume, and large quantity, what goes on tape or object). For example HPE has the StoreOnce solution.

However where is the HPE object storage story?
Otoh, does HPE its own object storage software, simply partner with others? HPE can continue to provide servers along with underlying storage for other vendors bulk, cloud and object storage systems, and where needed, meet in the channel among other arrangements.

On the other hand, this is where similar to Polyserve and Ibrix among others in the past have come into play, with HPE via its pathfinder (investment group) joining others in putting some money into Hedvig. HPE gets access to Hedvig for their scale out storage that can be used for bulk as well as other deployments including CI, HCI and CIB (e.g. something to sell HPE servers and storage with).

HPE can continue to partner with other software providers and software-defined storage stacks. Keep in mind that Milan Shetti (CTO, Data Center Infrastructure Group HPE) is no stranger to these waters given his past at Ibrix among others.

What About Hedvig
Time to get back to Hedvig which is a storage startup whose software can run on various server storage platforms, as well as in different topologies. Different topologies include in a CI or HCI, Cloud, as well as scale out with various access including block, file and object. In addition to block, file and object access, Hedvig has interesting management tools, data services, along with support for VMware, Docker, and OpenStack among others.

Recently Hedvig landed another $21.5M USD in funding bringing their total to about $52M USD. HPE via its investment arm, joins other investors (note HPE was part of the $21.5M, that was not the amount they invested) including Vertex, Atlantic Bridge, Redpoint, edbi and true ventures.

What does this mean for HPE and Hedvig among others? Tough to say however easy to imagine how Hedvig could be leveraged as a partner using HPE servers, as well as for HPE to have an addition to their bulk, scale-out, cloud and object storage portfolio.

Where to Learn More
View more material on HPE, data infrastructure and related topics with the following links.

Cloud and Object storage are in your future, what are some questions?
Data Infrastructure Primer and Overview (Its Whats Inside The Data Center)
January 2017 Server StorageIO Update Newsletter
September and October 2016 Server StorageIO Update Newsletter
HP Buys one of the seven networking dwarfs and gets a bargain

Did HP respond to EMC and Cisco VCE with Microsoft Hyper-V bundle?
Give HP storage some love and short strokin
While HP and Dell make counter bids, exclusive interview with 3PAR CEO David Scott
Hewlett-Packard beats Dell, pays $2.35 billion for 3PAR
HP Moonshot 1500 software defined capable compute servers
What Does Converged (CI) and Hyper converged (HCI) Mean to Storage I/O?
What's a data infrastructure?
Ensure your data infrastructure remains available and resilient
Object Storage Center, The SSD place and The NVMe place

What this all means
Generally speaking I think this is a good series of moves for HPE (and their customers) as long as they can execute in all dimensions.

Let's see how they execute, and by this, I mean more than simply executing or terminating staff from recently acquired or earlier acquisitions. How will HPE craft go to the market message that leverages the portfolio to compete and hold or take share from other vendors, vs. cannibalize across its own lines (e.g. revenue prevention)? With that strategy and message, how will HPE assure existing customers will be taken care, be given a definite upgrade and migration path vs. giving them a reason to go elsewhere.

Hopefully HPE unleashes the full potential of Simplivity and Nimble along with 3PAR, XP7 where needed, along with MSA at low-end (or as part of volume scale-out with servers for software defined), to mention sever portfolio. For now, this tells me that HPE is still interested in maintaining, expanding their data infrastructure business vs. simply retrenching selling off assets. Thus this looks like HPE is interested in continuing to invest in data infrastructure technologies including buying into server, storage I/O network, hardware, software solutions, while not simply clinging to what they already have, or previously bought.

Everything is not the same in data centers and across data infrastructure, so why have a one size fits all approach for organization as large, diverse as HPE.

Congratulations and best wishes to the folks at Hedvig, Nimble, Simplivity.

Now, lets see how this all plays out.

cloud object storage

Where to learn more

Wrap up and summary
Object and cloud storage are in your future, the questions are when, where, with what and how among others. Watch for more content and links to be added here as well as on the main object storage center page including posts, presentations, pod casts, perspectives along with services and product solutions profiles.

Ok, nuff said

Cheers
Gs

Greg Schulz - Microsoft MVP Cloud and Data Center Management, VMware vExpert (and vSAN). Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press) and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier) and twitter @storageio. Watch for the spring 2017 release of the new book "Software-Defined Data Infrastructure Essentials" (CRC Press).

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2017 Server StorageIO(R) and UnlimitedIO All Rights Reserved

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All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.

With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo@ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.

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Delegates to Cloud Expo @ThingsExpo will be able to attend 8 simultaneous, information-packed education tracks.

There are over 120 breakout sessions in all, with Keynotes, General Sessions, and Power Panels adding to three days of incredibly rich presentations and content.

Join Cloud Expo @ThingsExpo conference chair Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040), June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA for three days of intense Enterprise Cloud and 'Digital Transformation' discussion and focus, including Big Data's indispensable role in IoT, Smart Grids and (IIoT) Industrial Internet of Things, Wearables and Consumer IoT, as well as (new) Digital Transformation in Vertical Markets.

Financial Technology - or FinTech - Is Now Part of the @CloudExpo Program!

Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo @ThingsExpo June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech, which will incorporate machine learning, artificial intelligence, deep learning, and blockchain into one track.

Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expensive intermediate processes from their businesses.

FinTech brings efficiency as well as the ability to deliver new services and a much improved customer experience throughout the global financial services industry. FinTech is a natural fit with cloud computing, as new services are quickly developed, deployed, and scaled on public, private, and hybrid clouds.

More than US$20 billion in venture capital is being invested in FinTech this year. @CloudExpo is pleased to bring you the latest FinTech developments as an integral part of our program, starting at the 20th International Cloud Expo June 6-8, 2017 in New York City and October 31 - November 2, 2017 in Silicon Valley.

@CloudExpo is accepting submissions for this new track, so please visit www.CloudComputingExpo.com for the latest information.

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The upcoming 20th International @CloudExpo@ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA announces that its Call For Papers for speaking opportunities is open.

Submit your speaking proposal today! ▸ Here

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About Greg Schulz
Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at www.storageioblog.com and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.

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What do you get when you combine Big Data technologies….like Pig and Hive? A flying pig? No, you get a “Logical Data Warehouse.” In 2012, Infochimps (now CSC) leveraged its early use of stream processing, NoSQLs, and Hadoop to create a design pattern which combined real-time, ad-hoc, and batch analytics. This concept of combining the best-in-breed Big Data technologies will continue to advance across the industry until the entire legacy (and proprietary) data infrastructure stack will be replaced with a new (and open) one.
While unprecedented technological advances have been made in healthcare in areas such as genomics, digital imaging and Health Information Systems, access to this information has been not been easy for both the healthcare provider and the patient themselves. Regulatory compliance and controls, information lock-in in proprietary Electronic Health Record systems and security concerns have made it difficult to share data across health care providers.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Vanessa Alvarez has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo® 2014. 14th International Cloud Expo will take place on June 10-12, 2014, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and 15th International Cloud Expo® will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
12th International Cloud Expo, held on June 10–13, 2013 at the Javits Center in New York City, featured four content-packed days with a rich array of sessions about the business and technical value of cloud computing led by exceptional speakers from every sector of the cloud computing ecosystem. The Cloud Expo series is the fastest-growing Enterprise IT event in the past 10 years, devoted to every aspect of delivering massively scalable enterprise IT as a service.
Ulitzer.com announced "the World's 30 most influential Cloud bloggers," who collectively generated more than 24 million Ulitzer page views. Ulitzer's annual "most influential Cloud bloggers" list was announced at Cloud Expo, which drew more delegates than all other Cloud-related events put together worldwide. "The world's 50 most influential Cloud bloggers 2010" list will be announced at the Cloud Expo 2010 East, which will take place April 19-21, 2010, at the Jacob Javitz Convention Center, in New York City, with more than 5,000 expected to attend.
It's a simple fact that the better sales reps understand their prospects' intentions, preferences and pain points during calls, the more business they'll close. Each day, as your prospects interact with websites and social media platforms, their behavioral data profile is expanding. It's now possible to gain unprecedented insight into prospects' content preferences, product needs and budget. We hear a lot about how valuable Big Data is to sales and marketing teams. But data itself is only valuable when it's part of a bigger story, made visible in the right context.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Larry Carvalho has been named Tech Chair of Cloud Expo® 2014. 14th International Cloud Expo will take place on June 10-12, 2014, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and 15th International Cloud Expo® will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Everyone talks about a cloud-first or mobile-first strategy. It's the trend du jour, and for good reason as these innovative technologies have revolutionized an industry and made savvy companies a lot of money. But consider for a minute what's emerging with the Age of Context and the Internet of Things. Devices, interfaces, everyday objects are becoming endowed with computing smarts. This is creating an unprecedented focus on the Application Programming Interface (API) as developers seek to connect these devices and interfaces to create new supporting services and hybrids. I call this trend the move toward an API-first business model and strategy.
We live in a world that requires us to compete on our differential use of time and information, yet only a fraction of information workers today have access to the analytical capabilities they need to make better decisions. Now, with the advent of a new generation of embedded business intelligence (BI) platforms, cloud developers are disrupting the world of analytics. They are using these new BI platforms to inject more intelligence into the applications business people use every day. As a result, data-driven decision-making is finally on track to become the rule, not the exception.
Testimonials
This week I had the pleasure of delivering the opening keynote at Cloud Expo New York. It was amazing to be back in the great city of New York with thousands of cloud enthusiasts eager to learn about the next step on their journey to embracing a cloud-first worldl."
@SteveMar_Msft
 
How does Cloud Expo do it every year? Another INCREDIBLE show - our heads are spinning - so fun and informative."
@SOASoftwareInc
 
Thank you @ThingsExpo for such a great event. All of the people we met over the past three days makes us confident IoT has a bright future."
@Cnnct2me
 
One of the best conferences we have attended in a while. Great job, Cloud Expo team! Keep it going."

@Flexential


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Digital Transformation Blogs
In today's enterprise, digital transformation represents organizational change even more so than technology change, as customer preferences and behavior drive end-to-end transformation across lines of business as well as IT. To capitalize on the ubiquitous disruption driving this transformation, companies must be able to innovate at an increasingly rapid pace.
The explosion of new web/cloud/IoT-based applications and the data they generate are transforming our world right before our eyes. In this rush to adopt these new technologies, organizations are often ignoring fundamental questions concerning who owns the data and failing to ask for permission to conduct invasive surveillance of their customers. Organizations that are not transparent about how their systems gather data telemetry without offering shared data ownership risk product rejection, regulatory scrutiny and increasing consumer lack of trust in technology in general.
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogger and is a frequent speaker on the use of Big Data and data science to power the organization's key ...