#12 – EMC VSPEX BLUE with Chad Dunn

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EMC VSPEX BLUEIn this episode I speak with Chad Dunn, EMC’s Senior Director of VSPEX, about VSPEX BLUE, how hyper-converged architectures fit into the IT industry, what differentiates EMC’s EVO:RAIL based hyper-converged product, and also go into more depth on VSPEX BLUE itself.

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EMC VSPEX BLUE is a scale-out reference architecture based on EMC hardware and the VMware EVO:RAIL product.  VMware EVO:RAIL is a hyper-converged infrastructure product, that combines virtualized compute, storage and networking resources (including management), in to a single box, which is sold via a handful of VMware partners who install EVO:RAIL on their own branded hardware.  Put simply, VMware provide the hyper-converged software and their partners, EMC being one of them, install EVO:RAIL on their own hardware and wrap additional software and services around it.

Since the EVO:RAIL product that runs on top of the physical hardware is the same across all of the VMware partners, who are offering EVO:RAIL, there have to be ways in which each of the partners differentiate their offering from that of their competitors.

emc-vspex-blueEMC’s VSPEX BLUE does this through enhanced management into the underlying physical hardware (all from the EVO:RAIL management console), providing back and disaster recovery, along with tight integration with environment monitoring and “call home” functionality & support.  Not only that, EMC are also providing (all included in the cost) 10TB of Cloud based storage, for if and when  a business wants additional storage capacity.  Meaning you are not limited by the physical storage capacity in a single VSPEX BLUE appliance, though not that it is at all hard to add additional VSPEX BLUE appliances quickly and easily should needs arise.

Links mentioned in the show:

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#11 – VMware EVO:RAIL with Mike Laverick

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Mike Laverick Podcast VMWare EVO RAILVMware EVO:RAIL was announced by VMware at VMworld in San Francisco last year (2014).  This is a hyper-converged infrastructure product which means the components that typically make up a traditional IT infrastructure, such as server, storage and networking are consolidated down to a single physical appliance (albeit using a top-of-rack 10Gb switch for inter and external node connectivity).

There are currently nine vendors, including EMC, who have signed up to the EVO:RAIL programme, each of whom will be coming to market with their own hardware offering, on top of which the EVO:RAIL product runs.  Want to find out more?  Then definitely check out this podcast.

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During this episode we cover the following key topics:

  • What is EVO:RAIL?
  • What is a Hyper-Converged Infrastructure?
  • How is EVO:RAIL easy to install, configure and manage?
  • What parts of the EVO:RAIL solution does VMware provide & which components/parts do EVO partners provide in the overall solution?
  • What are some of the differentiators between EVO partner’s offerings?  eg: is it just the hardware it runs on? Also, is there the ability for them to include additional functionality/value-add to the solution at the software layer?
  • Typical/planned EVO:RAIL use cases
  • How does EVO:RAIL differ from EVO:RACK?
  • How to find out more about EVO:RAIL

Links mentioned in the show:

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#10 – OpenStack with Kenneth Hui

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OpenStack Ken HuiOpenStack is evolving and gaining traction, with many businesses  looking towards OpenStack as a potential Public Cloud platform alternative to the likes of AWS.  Though for many in the industry OpenStack is still something of an unknown frontier. To help shed some light on the topic I speak with Ken Hui (EMC’s OpenStack Cloud Solutions Business Development Manager) who helps us gain a better understanding of OpenStack, what it is and how it fits into the Cloud eco-system.

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During this episode we cover the following key topics:

  • What is OpenStack?
  • How does OpenStack fit into the ‘Cloud’ picture?
  • Does OpenStack run alongside VMware vSphere or instead of?
  • How does EMC contribute to the OpenStack initiative?
  • Where is EMC’s commitment to the OpenStack initiative heading?

Links mentioned in the show:

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#9 – Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) with Jim Sanzone

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EMC Enterprise Hybrid CloudHi folks, it’s been quite a while since I last recorded a Data Centre Insiders podcast, so it was great to kick things off again and what better way than having on the show, Jim Sanzone (EMC Solutions Technical Marketing Director), to discuss Hybrid Cloud and EMC’s new Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) solution.

With Hybrid Cloud gaining more traction, and with more vendors starting to come to market with increasingly robust Hybrid Cloud offerings, this seemed like a good opportunity to find out more, and get some details around what the EMC Enterprise Hybrid Cloud has to offer.

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In this show we discuss and cover the following:

  • What is Hybrid Cloud?
  • EMC Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) overview
  • EHC use cases
  • How do I get EHC?
    I hope you enjoy this podcast episode as much as I did recording it, it’s great to be back, and expect more regular Data Center Insider podcasts from now on.
    Listen to some more episodes:  
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EMC Products – Useful VMware Integration Guide

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EMC and VMware Integration PointsWith virtualization technologies and products at the centre of most IT infrastructures these days it is more important than ever that there be a synergy and a decent level of integration between the hardware, software and underlying virtualization platform.  In many cases this isn’t something that has always been there though over time, and with the wide spread adoption of virtualization technologies from companies such as VMware and Microsoft, there has been an acknowledgement from vendors to the importance of providing tight integration between their and key virtualization products.

EMC is one such vendor who has been providing an increasing number of integration points into virtualization products, particularly VMware, for a number of years now.  To a point where it can be hard to keep track of these many integrations.  It isn’t unheard of for a company to be running an EMC product whilst being unaware that they could be benefitting from one or more of these EMC/VMware integrations.

Storage Vendor VMware Integration

To assist in making this easier EMC have made available a downloadable guide (in Adobe pdf format) that clearly outlines the many integration points between the various EMC and VMware products, along with highlighting the value and benefits that each provides.  This guide will prove to be particularly useful when assessing if there are any of these useful and time saving VMware and EMC storage integrations that you could be utilizing to make your day to day IT Professional life easier.

The EMC VMware pdf integration guide provides the following information on each integration:

    • Feature Product(s)
    • Integration
    • Mechanism
    • Integration Point
    • Description
    • Business Value
    • More Information

EMC Storage VMware Integration Guide

      From this list you can see that the guide is not solely targeted at a technical audience but also provides useful ‘Business Value’ information that could prove of use to IT decision makers.  All of EMC’s product portfolio (eg: storage, backup, security, etc) is included in this guide, so if it has a VMware integration then it has been included.  Here is a list of those EMC products – quite an extensive list!
  • AppSync
  • Avamar
  • Clariion
  • Celerra
  • DataDomain
  • DPA
  • Isilon
  • ItemPoint
  • Networker
  • RecoverPoint
  • RSA Aveksa
  • RSA DLP
  • RSA SecurID
  • RSA Security Analytics
  • ViPR
  • VMAX
  • VNX/VNXe
  • VPLEX
  • XtremIO
      So if you’re running, or are thinking about running, an EMC product(s) in your VMware based infrastructure then definitely

download this informative integration guide

    and take a look. Kudos to James Walkenhorst and team for creating this guide, it will no doubt prove highly useful to EMC’ers, EMC partners and customers alike.
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#8 – EMC Backup & Recovery with Alex Almeida

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Data Center Insiders Podcast - Alex Almeida EMCAlex Almeida is the Senior Technical Manager from EMC’s Backup & Recovery Systems Division, and a backup guy from way-back.  With the recent big announcements from EMC around most of its backup and recovery products I thought this would be an excellent time to get Alex on the podcast to talk through some of the new features and enhancements from the announcement.

We also cover the topics of how EMC has stayed ahead of the curve regarding backup and recover over the years, along with the increasing trend and benefits in moving the ability to backup and restore at the application level, and empowering end users and application administrators.

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The importance of backup and recovery has traditionally been overlooked by many in the industry, though luckily this has changed in recent years, and with the introduction of many exciting new backup and recovery technologies on the market has made this area a far cry from the days of old where working with backups were just plain boring and uncool.

Check out some of the other Data Center Insiders podcast episodes: 

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#7 – Software Defined with Chad Sakac

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Chad Sakac - Data Center Insiders PodcastIn this episode of the Data Center Insiders podcast I speak with the one and only Virtual Geek, Chad Sakac.  As always I enjoy my conversations with Chad and his excellent knowledge of technology and the IT industry on the whole.

We cover a wide range of topics including:

– Life after creating the vSpecialist organization: Chad talks about his new role as EMC’s Senior Vice President of the Global SEs, and the challenges in scaling the concept of a “Tribe”.

– Software Defined x:  Chad runs through his take on the current state of play around the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC), and the various aspects and considerations for some of the software defined components/devices.

– Lab time excellent! I find out what Chad is running in his famous home lab these days

– And finally, will we see any more Chad’s Worlds webcasts or live events?

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Thanks to Chad for spending the time out of his hectic schedule, and don’t forget to check out his Virtual Geek blog here.

Check out some of the other Data Center Insiders podcast episodes:  

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#6 – Social Media in IT & EMC’ with Matthew Brender

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In this episode of the Data Center Insiders podcast I am joined by EMC Senior Social Engagement Manager, Matthew Brender (Twitter: @mjbrender).  In the podcast we cover the topics of what Matthew’s role entails, EMC Elect, what does “Social Engagement” mean and finally what is the best approach to ensure success, acceptance, and importantly, how companies should look at adding value in the world of social media.

Matthew Brender - EMC Senior Social Engagement ManagerWith social media playing an important part in the support, marketing and services areas of global industry, with IT being no exception, there is an increasing emphasis these days for businesses to embrace social media, to take part and use it as a means to effectively engage with new and existing customers.  I found my discussion with Matthew provided real insight into some of the social media and customer engagement challenges facing IT vendors.

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Links referenced in the podcast:

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#5 – EMC VMAX Cloud Edition with Matthew Yeager

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VMAX Cloud Edition - podcastIn this episode of the Data Center Insiders podcast I speak with Matthew Yeager,  EMC VMAX Cloud Edition Team Lead (EMEA), about the recent EMC VMAX Cloud Edition storage offering.  We discuss what the VMAX Cloud Edition is, it’s high level functionality, how it differs from the standard EMC VMAX, it’s use cases and where the VMAX Cloud Edition is positioned in the market.

This is an exciting new product in the EMC portfolio that is responding to the storage offerings from Public Storage Cloud providers, and to also provide customers with a simpler method to administrator and present out their storage.

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Data Center Insiders Podcast*Note: This podcast was recorded just prior to EMC World this year (2013), and I ran out of time to edit and post it beforehand, so there are a couple of references to the show coming up.

Check out some of the other Data Center Insiders podcast episodes:

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EMC ProSphere – Try, Learn & Download for Free

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EMC ProSphere 1.7Following up on my recent post here which provides links to download your own free copy of the EMC VNX or Celerra Virtual Storage Appliance (VSA), here is another EMC product to download and try for free in your own lab environment.   EMC ProSphere is a Cloud storage management solution that monitors and analyzes storage services in a virtualization infrastructure.   

Through using ProSphere you can gain a detailed insight into the following areas of your storage:

  • Capacity: Easily view capacity is being consumed on your storage.
  • Issue Detection: Identify conditions that require your attention.
  • Performance: View the performance trends of your storage.
    EMC ProSphere Download

Sound Good? Where can you download my own free copy of  EMC ProSphere?

Before we move on to the download links I should point out that the only catch with this free downloadable version of EMC ProSphere is that it doesn’t come with any “Official” EMC support, although there is a healthy ProSphere community that can be found at this EMC ECN Community site where you’ll usually find someone who can assist you with any questions.

Download Link:  The latest EMC ProSphere download can always be found at the “EMC ProSphere: Play-Learn-Try” page here.

EMC ProSphere Free Download

Installing & Configuring EMC ProSphere

So once you’ve downloaded the relevant ProSphere files?  Well, the good news is that there are a couple of easy to follow  guides that will have you up and running with EMC ProSphere in no time.

Other Useful Links

  • Check out these other useful ProSphere related links:
  • Virtual Geek – EMC ProSphere 1.5 – Play, Learn,Try!
  • Official EMC ProSphere site
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