In terms of performance, our old architecture was far behind and couldn't keep up. That was our tipping point when deciding to move to a new solution.
Converged Infrastructure Architecture Reviews
Showing reviews of the top ranking products in Converged Infrastructure, containing the term Architecture
We can scale the solution really easily. We've been doing that fluidly. We were probably one of the first Cisco customers to come online when the UCS line came out. We have a lot invested in our architecture and we pass that on to clients.
Scaling is easy to do. We can pretty much have any one of our clients do it on demand.
Scalability is easy, and we can pretty much have anybody do it.
We can scale that really easily, and we’ve been doing that. We were probably one of the first Cisco customers that came on when the UCS line came out, so we have a lot invested in the architecture.
At the end of the day, AI is not AI without the application that we write into it. With collaboration between Microsoft — utilizing it to build in a manner that is compatible to the FlexPod architecture — we're able to provide specific intelligence that supports our objectives — whatever it is at a given time. Whether it's data aggregation, learning, pouring out the analytics, the intelligence helps specific applications respond to requirements within a business structure. That's what FlexPod enables us to do. That agility reduces the number of hours that it takes to construct a data center, whether it is physical or virtual, by enabling applications to support AI objectives. It just needs to be built correctly.
We have experienced about 28 to 30% improvement in application performance and in our industry that's actually a very significant improvement.
The purpose of using FlexPod, for us, is to simplify and streamline application deployment.
Compared to utilizing a rack and stack model and using a virtualization technology like VMware, the time savings is about 40% in getting the application into production.
I see the most value in the UCS portion. I love Cisco UCS.
Its ability to scale seamlessly makes adding anything so much easier than having to run by separate new hardware from the get-go.
The validated design in the architecture is an ongoing debate. You don't need to buy FlexPod itself. You can borrow FlexPod based on the reference architecture. I wouldn't say that the validated design plays such a big role because you can just reference the architecture and technically have FlexPod as well.
At the moment, our customers don't use storage tiering to public cloud but there are plans for future use.
Our private cloud sector of our company has grown exponentially thanks to the ease of deployment of the FlexPod architecture. We are also able to deploy a console to customers who want on-prem environments in a smaller deployment structure with a UCS Mini and direct-attached storage. So, it's helped us exponentially grow the business.
All-flash has helped the company a lot, especially for business critical applications. We found that customers want more performance than ever based on what is out there in the market. We find that innovation and integration with the whole FlexPod design has helped a lot.
Knowing that everything works, having a single place to be able to find out compatibility and things like that are the biggest benefits of this solution.
FlexPod's validated designs for major enterprise apps are very important in our company. For example, running our SQL clusters, being able to have compatibility information, and validated design information, for everything from SQL versions, OS versions, switching, firmware versions, and UCS and models of whatever hardware we're using, having all of that pre-validated and available is nice.
We do not use their storage into public cloud.
We have found that it simplifies our infrastructure from edge to core. It's just nice to have that single source of pre-validated designs and reference architectures.
The history of innovations has not affected our operations. We've been pretty stable. We haven't really done a whole lot as far as, being on the bleeding edge of anything.
Unified support for the entire stack is pretty important. It's nice to have. It makes it a lot easier from our perspective, to be able to make or have a single point of contact, for issues that are kind of gray as far as where the problem lies.
We did involve a reseller. I can't mention them by name but they are a very well-known company. The process was great. They set up everything, and they are still helping us with the architecture and the new features, and so on so forth. As a matter of fact, they would be helping us updating firmware on the fabric interconnects in the next few months.
A valuable feature of the FlexPod solution is that it is all one architecture and I can call one number and get support for Cisco and NetApp without having to jump through open TAC (Technical Assistance Center) cases and do multiple things to get issues addressed. When integrating with VMware, I know all the parts that came with it and all the parts and when I need to update something in it, I can just get the complete package, do all the firmware stuff and the fabric interconnects.
We have used technical support a few times. I'm mostly on the architecture side. The engineering team uses it. I hardly use the technical support, though I've used it in the past. It's good depending on the support level you get. We have enterprise level support. We have the highest level support from Cisco and have never had an issue.
The solution’s unified support for the entire stack is critically important because we cannot afford downtime.
This solution has been helpful to our organization in many ways including provisioning storage, provisioning applications, and maintaining applications.
The validated designs for major enterprise applications are very important for us. They help with time availability, architecture, and security. From an application uptime perspective, it's important.
This solution has helped to simplify our infrastructure. All of these individual components integrate well with each other, and from a customer standpoint, I don't really have to worry about compatibility and other things on my end.
The unified support for the entire stack is something that is important to us.
This solution has decreased our unplanned downtime.
The solution's unified support for the entire stack is significant. In my experience, I've had situations where we built an architecture that did not have that model. It was difficult because as a customer, we ended up coordinating the support of the multiple vendors.
Our experience with them has been positive. We do have a technical account manager on the Cisco side, and the coordinated support is available if necessary.
The validated design is really important for us because it gives us a model on which to base our architecture and continued support for all firmware upgrades. It also provides consistency throughout the environment.
FlexPod is making our staff more efficient. They don't have to spend as much time validating infrastructures and designs because that has been already taken care of out-of-the-box. The support model makes it a lot more efficient in the case of incidents.
Dell EMC VxBlock System: Architecture
The most valuable aspect of the solution is the integrated architecture, which is on a highly available, highly redundant infrastructure. It is purposefully built on a highly redundant architecture.
It's a highly optimized piece of equipment that doesn't give us any problems.
The fact that you've got one single point of contact for your support is very appealing.
Dell EMC Vscale Architecture: Architecture
My customers procure the HCI boxes from Dell. They deploy it in their data center and then we plan the solution and design or configure the network-based upon how many PLR's and how much storage we need for the Vscale setup. Then we create all the storage-related configuration software policies for networking. We usually use NSX and then we have a different setup. If we are using ACI Cisco it's also a different setup. So we configure it based on company to company. Some of the cases we have configured are portals. In some cases, we use API to provide detailed automated deployment. We have other tools that we use to automate end to end deployment.
The use cases of HCI or even Vscale Architecture are predominantly the areas where the customer has an edge data center or an extended data center where they don't want to set up end to end distributors or fabric costs or to set up network fabric using LTL server switching. We configure the aggregation layer before we sell, plug the plugin distributed cables, manage the networking independently, start it independently, and compute it independently. We use it in the use case when the customer wants an agile type of environment where they can plug and play and get it with a box and a small data center from edge locations. It is for customers who are leveraging IoT of IG setup who have edge data centers and want to be agile and less prone to human errors.
IBM PurePower System: Architecture
My advice to others would be the following: if you have a traditional application, like core banking, or transactional, or something that has to do with money, it is better to go with IBM. The reason I'm saying this is because it is more stable and easier to monitor. But if you are looking for the newest architecture of the application cloud, you should go with either hyper-converged or converged.
I would like to see better management and high availability in the next release of this program. With classical architectural systems, it's more delicate and difficult to have a high availability of systems. But with hyper-converged systems, we can have it in the easiest way.
On a scale from one to ten, I will rate this program an eight.