“Dell is the only vendor providing end-to-end rack based solution that integrates the network as a part of hyper-convergence”, said Rajesh Ramnani, Regional Director, CPSD, Dell EMC India
Hyper-converged infrastructure unlike traditional converged systems natively collapses core storage, compute, and storage networking functions into a single software solution or appliance. In addition to integrating storage and compute functions into a single node (or a cluster of nodes, each offering compute and storage functions), hyper-converged infrastructure employs a distributed file system or object store for data organization and access, an abstraction mechanism for pooling hardware resources and providing a substrate for workload adjacency.
Today’s well-designed, commercially available hyper-converged solutions are based on web-scale architecture sand share attributes of a distributed everything architecture, scale-out design, and analytics but do not require businesses to develop their own new technology stack. Hyper-converged architectures are being used as a platform of choice when building out today’s public and private cloud infrastructure as organizations look for fast deployment of IT, reduced time spent managing datacenter assets, and easy scale out.
Hyper-Converged infrastructure is one of the most rapidly-growing methods for deploying IT in the data center, as IT departments seek ways to adjust to their new role in business and new responsibilities entrusted on them. HCI is now a mainstream technology for the modern data center. IT organizations are looking beyond non-mission-critical use cases for HCI deployment. They are choosing HCI for the high value it delivers to simplify infrastructure deployment and management, make more use of cloud services, scale for more data, and better support business applications. In recent years, IT organizations have looked to converged infrastructure (CI) to address their requirements. Now, many companies are instead choosing hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI), especially as part (or in lieu) of a server refresh, to provide a flexible core system for running even mission-critical applications. Companies are using HCI for multiple application workloads, including collaboration and productivity, engineering and technical, big data and analytics, and remote office computing. India is one of the forerunners in adopting new technologies like hyper-convergence. India has already seen the benefits of hyper-convergence for its customers and has begun adopting it in large scale. The market is growing at an unprecedented rate of more than 70 to 80 percent every year
Market size of hyper-convergence in India and global
As per analysts’ view, the generic market size of hyper-convergence in India is about USD 35 to 40 million at present. Because of its rapid year-on-year growth at the rate of 46 to 50 percent, the market is expected to be USD 63 to 65 million by 2019 in India alone. Globally, its market size is USD 3.5 billion and is expected to touch about USD 5 billion at the end of 2019 with a year-on-year growth rate of 42 to 45 percent. Dell EMC’s hyper-convergence market share is 41 percent and 43 percent in India and global, respectively.
Latest trends in hyper-convergence
HCI is becoming more and more mainstream. Customers are exploring HCI for critical workloads like DWH, design applications, SOC etc. So it is no longer about test and development and VDI workloads. Customers have started to appreciate the simplicity of HCI and are exploring it for all their virtual workloads. Hyper-convergence is expected to be the next logical step for organizations looking to improve their workloads and infrastructure, while keeping cost under control. Recent market studies indicate that the steady acceptance of cloud, mobility and Internet of Things (IoT) is driving the demand for HCIS. By 2019, approximately 30% of the global storage array capacity installed in enterprise data centers will be deployed on software-defined storage (SDS) or hyper-converged integrated system (HCIS) architectures. Twenty percent of mission-critical applications currently deployed on three-tier IT infrastructure will transition to HCISs by 2020.
Dell EMC unique role in providing hyper-convergence solutions
Dell is the only vendor providing end-to-end rack based solution that integrates the network as a part of it. We also have management console taking care of not just the compute, memory and network but also of completely software defined solutions like self-servicing, charge back, automation that are Dell’s uniqueness. VMware being a part of Dell EMC, we are the only one having appliance based hyper-converge solution end-to-end on VMware. Jointly, we have created the hyper-convergence solution and we do not have to rely on multiple technologies to move forward on our hyper-convergence journey. Ideally, all software should work tandem with each other and this can happen only when the software is developed as a product from a single factory, which we have jointly achieved. Thus, our customers can experience seamless support in all spheres from a particular vendor. Otherwise, issues may creep in terms of support and management.
Dell EMC’s targeted verticals in India
According to Rajesh Ramnani, Regional Director, CPSD, Dell EMC India, “Customers across all industries can benefit from the adoption of converged systems. Organizations large and small, from all industries, who are striving to modernize their infrastructure in order to compete in today’s digital age will benefit from an integrated system and converged infrastructure environment. A hyper-converged infrastructure in particular helps customers in building, maintaining, and expanding their own IT infrastructure is risky, saps time and resources, and makes predictable scaling difficult. Managing the lifecycle becomes easier, which is otherwise complicated with multiple upgrades and dealing with multiple support organizations – is too hard and takes too long.” Dell EMC’s VxRail offers configure-to-order flexibility to meet any use case. From an architectural standpoint, VxRail’s key performance advantage is its ability to deliver this simplicity in a distributed enterprise starts with its tight integration between VMware vSAN and the vSphere hypervisor. This is dramatically different from every other hyper-converged storage solutions that require the installation of a virtual storage appliance on each host.
While, hyper-converged infrastructure is being marginally preferred for perimeter workloads, which are non-core for the business. It is also being used extensively where organizations have high scale-out requirements. With scalability and simplicity as the key parameters for customers in India, HCI appliances are a perfect fit for businesses looking to move from a “build yourself” to a “buy” model.
Challenges for Dell EMC in hyper-convergence journey
The key challenge in adoption of HCI is to ensure that an HCI setup does not become another silo in the DC. An HCI solution should integrate well with the existing technologies in the data centre. This is where the power of portfolio of Dell technologies come to play. Our Vxrail solution is built on industry leading VMware technology. This ensures that the solution seamlessly gels into a customer data centre, leveraging existing software and hardware assets and requiring minimum skills. For customers who want a complete end to end solution on HCI, DellEMC can help with our rack scale appliances which are unique in industry. This is one of the strong points for DellEMC. Continuous modernization is also one of the key challenges for customers wanting to adopt integrated systems. This presents an opportunity for Dell EMC as we are uniquely positioned to digitally transform customers by offering edge to core solutions. What sets Dell EMC apart in the industry is that we can offer the full continuum of converged solutions to help our customers simplify IT – from build. Our converged portfolio can address any workload in any IT environment and deliver it based on the preferred customer experience.
At the End…
There is definitely so much more to explore. Once this technology stabilises and the customers experience other services that it has to offer, Dell EMC is looking forward to make software completely automated in future with the help of hyper-convergence. However, to achieve that the technology has to mature to that extent.Customers are also exploring areas wherein there would be two worlds – private and public cloud and they would get a unified view of both and move workload from their own, private environment to public environment and vice versa. This aspect, known as hybrid cloud, has just started to happen. It has immense potential where these two worlds can merge together and provide customers with a seamless experience of movement between public and private cloud. Intermediator software are being developed by which customers can move between public and private cloud.