“It feels like magic but it is technology,” and “we will help transform every company into a software company,” were the two quotes by Michael Dell that best summed up the spirit of Dell EMC World 2017. These statements show the genuine excitement of a seasoned tech executive to attack the next challenge of his career: merging the Dell EMC brands -Pivotal, VMware, RSA, SecureWorks, and Virtustream- into one highly differentiated IT powerhouse.
EMA's latest research shows that 68% of enterprises are in the process of evaluating container technologies. Why is everyone today so fascinated by containers? It reminds me of the OpenStack-mania in 2013. At the time I was convinced that VMware had set out to crush the hype, while IBM, Rackspace and a ton of VC funded startups oversold OpenStack to the highest degree. I still have my collection of USB sticks with OpenStack distributions from Piston, Mirantis and friends. Claiming that all I had to do was plugging these sticks into any piece of metal and I'd have Amazon EC2 running right under my desk was not a great idea and ultimately lead to a degree of frustration that made the Microsoft and VMware tax look attractive and ultimately turned Amazon Web Services into a $4.5 billion business.
Traditional IT infrastructure monitoring focuses on hypervisor hosts, storage and VMs. Application impact is tracked through vSphere resource tagging. This simple and mostly static drilldown approach to full-stack monitoring no longer works for modern microservices based computing.
"Today, a dev team leveraging Kubernetes containers can get a cloud app up in minutes." This statement by Arvind Krishna, IBM’s GM for Hybrid Cloud, at the beginning of his InterConnect 2017 keynote should have received a lot more recognition than it did. This one sentence shows the fundamental shift in IBM’s strategy, away from the old Tivoli-centric IT ops company and toward a modern DevOps-focused organization that is looking for differentiation up the stack. Today’s IBM encourages developers to deploy entire application environments without IT administrators even being aware.
What is Fungible, Inc., the new startup created by Juniper Networks’ founder Pradeep Sindhu, working on?
As we -Evan and I- were ranting last week about how OpenStack and VMware fit together (see #EMACloudRants), we were mainly focusing on the central conundrum that VMware faces within this context: “Should we support an open platform that could commoditize away a substantial part of our profitable infrastructure business or should we ignore the threat and do our own thing”
Of course, I always encourage practitioners to carefully study the full EMA research report on the “Obstacles and Priorities on the Journey to the Software-Defined Data Center” or at least read the research study summary or at the very least join the EMA SDDC Research webinar on February 18, but I still want to briefly summarize the key findings here.
As every year, IBM invited the analyst community to Stamford, CT, for a deep dialogue on today's most important topics in enterprise IT. Here is a short overview for everyone interested in IBM's current world view.
The Havana release of OpenStack was launched on October 17, about three weeks prior to the OpenStack Summit in Hong Kong. As always, there are many new features -high availability, load balancing, easier upgrades, plugins for development tools, improved SDN support, fiber channel SAN support, improved bare metal capabilities- and even two new core components, Ceilometer -metering and monitoring- and Heat -orchestration of the creation of entire application environments- to admire. Without any doubt, OpenStack is becoming more enterprise ready with each new release .
When it comes to cloud technologies, discussions often get passionate or even heated. It’s all about the “war of the stacks”, where much Cool Aid is dispensed to get customers to buy into the respective cult. This discussion reminds me of the old days of enterprise IT, where everything was about technology instead of business value. You either bought one thing or the other and then you were locked in for a half decade. Dark times.