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Monthly Archives: August 2013

3 Steps to Put You on the Path to the Software-Defined Data Center

The software-designed data center (SDDC) was the hot topic at VMworld 2013, which wrapped up this week. Our consultants and the VMworld speakers helped answer lots of SDDC questions, but we know that there are still plenty out there—especially for those of you who couldn’t join us in San Francisco.

To begin at the beginning: How do we define the software-defined data center? As VMware Professional Services Chief Architect John Steiner points out in this video, SDDC is not just virtualization of servers, networks, and storage. He instead describes it as “cloud done right,” and outlines the other processes that allow IT organizations to realize the full benefits of a software-defined data center architecture.

We know organizations are also looking for specific steps to help them design an efficient transition to the software-defined data center. In this second video, John explains three key questions for organizations to answer, pointing out, “It’s not about doing it all at once—it’s about understanding how I can drive virtualization and server definition into all the key components in all my endpoints.”

For more details on getting the full benefits of the software-defined data center, please contact VMware Technology Consulting Services. They will be happy to help!

Meet the Bloggers Today!

Don’t forget to stop by the Professional Services booth at VMworld today from 4:15–5pm for our Meet the Bloggers event. Get in-person answers to all your pressing IT questions and meet the consultants and architects behind this blog and the VMware Accelerate Blog.

If you can’t join us in San Francisco, we hope you’ll still join us here on the VMware Consulting Blog. We have lots of great posts scheduled for the coming months, including several by new bloggers. You won’t want to miss them!

Get Your Hands on the Data Center of the Future

By John Steiner, Eric Ledyard and Shaun Millin

Today’s software-defined data center (SDDC) is helping IT organizations meet business demands by automating and managing a growing range of data center functions, freeing up resources for new projects that support IT as a service.

From talking to VMware customers, we know that up to 80% of deployment time has nothing to do with physical equipment—it’s all about the orchestration between the technology, the people and the migration process. Thus, implementing an SDDC architecture goes beyond virtualized computing to a fully integrated, highly automated IT environment.

You can see exactly how the VMware Professional Services team designed and built an SDDC environment based on the vCloud Enterprise product suite and the opportunities it presents during our hands-on demo at VMworld San Francisco this week. Stop by the VMworld Professional Services booth to have one of our skilled architects walk you through the data center of the future.

The SDDC hands-on demo will include:

  • A self service catalog based on vCloud Automation Center where users can provision different types of systems, including small, medium, and large environments, with a built-in costing model. With a couple of clicks, deploy Windows and Linux machines, along with a multi-tier application that provides a shopping cart interface for web servers, fully backed by network load balancing, as well as a database with communication networking built in.
  • A fully integrated management interface where administrators can easily determine which systems are available to users and automatically apply different approval workflows. Admins can also decide what kind of networking is put in place, including low, medium, and high security levels.  All of the automation and orchestration of the environment was achieved by integrating vCenter Automation Center with vCenter Orchestrator.
  • A workflow manager employing vCenter Orchestrator, the single workflow engine running behind the VMware live demo. When a system, network, or group is requested, vCenter Orchestrator runs predefined workflow components, such as additional installations. Once the system has been deployed, it’s also dynamically entered into the vCenter Operations Manager  environment, purpose-built for the software-defined data center.
  • The vCenter Operations management environment, which greatly improves on traditional green, yellow, red health ratings. In addition to dynamically managing virtual environments, it provides risk and trending information, allowing administrators to track the health of the environment, but also to see opportunities for future failures. Instead of today’s traditional “reactive” environments, a software-defined data center enables a proactive environment where administrators can fix problems before they occur by monitoring the health of the entire stack, not just the server interface.
  • The vCenter Configuration Manager, which examines the environment where a system is being deployed to determine if it is following predefined compliance and security rules. In addition, the virtualized networking environment allows administrators to look into all the security and networking capabilities offered by VMware to automate rule creation and to monitor compliance without having to chase down and scan different machines.

For details on how these products are deployed and integrated, contact VMware Professional Services or stop by and talk with our consultants and architects at our VMworld booth.


John Steiner is Chief Architect for VMware Professional Services. Since joining VMware in 2007 and VMware Accelerate Advisory Services in 2010, Steiner has pioneered the business solutions architect delivery model through the creation of architectural blueprints and multiyear roadmaps that help customers achieve maximum business value, data center efficiencies, cost reductions and ROI objectives.

As a business solutions architect for VMware Accelerate Advisory Services, Eric Ledyard utilizes the broad VMware portfolio and his own experience to design strategic roadmaps for transformation that lead organizations to their goals of building highly efficient IT-as-a-service environments.

Shaun Millin has worked at VMware for more than a year with the Integration Automation Team, designing and delivering custom IaaS and PaaS solutions. Shaun has extensive knowledge in data center virtualization, orchestration, and VMware API scripting.

Come Find Your Blueprint for BYOD Success

Employees today have more information available—and more ways to access that information—than ever before. No longer does a single device (whether it’s a laptop, a tablet or a traditional desktop computer) meet the needs of today’s workforce. Your goals haven’t changed: to deliver a secure, manageable and efficient end user computing environment to the enterprise. Now you just have to do that while managing a menagerie of devices.

VMware products enable companies to virtualize, simplify and control their end-user computing environments; but to be effective, these solutions must integrate with a complex, multifaceted and ever-changing business environment. To design and deploy these solutions correctly, you must be able to make this complex ecosystem of various devices and systems work together seamlessly.

At VMworld San Francisco, you’ll have the opportunity to meet the leading architects of blueprints for exactly this kind of modern mobile enterprise—the VMware Professional Services EUC architects. Stop by the VMworld Professional Services booth to see an eye-catching iPad demo, providing an inside look at four end-user computing blueprints and a deeper appreciation for the technical and architectural decisions required for a high-performing EUC solution.

Learn about:

  • AlwaysOn Point of Care. Drawing on our healthcare industry experience, we integrate VMware technologies with the your environment’s third-party systems and optimize your IT landscape to meet your needs. By weaving together a variety of devices—from desktops to physician tablets and remote smartphones—VMware provides a single-sign-on, seamless user experience across your organization. We deploy an infrastructure that provides the high availability essential in healthcare environments, along with the security needed to protect patient privacy and ensure regulatory compliance.
  • Mobile Secure Workplace. We take an integrated approach to mobile technology, bringing together and optimizing VMware products with third-party technologies while leveraging your existing systems. While building security into your architecture, we also focus on device independence and flexibility, so your infrastructure won’t be left behind by rapidly advancing mobile technology.
  • Branch Office Desktop. We conduct a thorough assessment of your central and branch-office IT landscape. We look at storage and how it will be affected by the way images and user personas are managed, as well network topology, to understand issues such as WAN availability, application strategy and the number of endpoints that need to be supported.
  • Business Process Desktop. We analyze workflows to understand your business requirements, then design an architecture that provides seamless integration of voice and digital channels, along with consistent network performance and availability. Because flexibility is especially important in these operations, we deliver a blueprint for a repeatable deployment process that lets you scale operations up and down quickly to stay in step with changing business demand.

VMware Professional Services can help you design and deploy an end-user solution that is secure, reliable, and right for your business—and do it rapidly while minimizing risk and maximizing your return on investment. Come visit us at VMworld to see how!

 

Your Questions Answered—In Person—At ‘Meet The Bloggers’

By Ted Ohr, Senior Director of Americas Service Delivery

Here at the VMWare Consulting Blog, we are lucky to be able to gather an incredible range of knowledge under one roof, from BYOD and security policies, to SDDC and Tier-1 applications. Our goal is to share insights across many topics, and to help you get to know the professional services consultants through their posts.

We’ll be extending that mission from the digital realm into the real world at our Meet the Bloggers event, Tuesday, August 27, at VMworld San Francisco 2013. Stop by the VMware booth from 4:15–5pm to get in-person answers and additional information on topics at the heart of this blog, as well as the VMware Accelerate blog.

Here are some questions and topics our bloggers are eager to discuss:

Where should you start when virtualizing Tier-1 applications?

Are your applications ready for data center transformation?

What is the best storage design strategy for a successful VDI deployment?

What security questions need to be asked when considering virtualization?

But that’s not all! We have lots of great posts scheduled for the coming months, many by new bloggers who will also be at Meet the Bloggers. Stop by and meet with our architects and consultants.  It’s a great opportunity for all.  Join us!

With over 18 years of technology experience, Ted Ohr is the Senior Director of Americas Service Delivery, which includes Software Defined Data Center, Mobility, Project Management and Technical Account Management. In addition to driving services revenue growth in Latin America, he is also responsible for leading all aspects of service delivery, thought leadership and best practices for VMware’s Professional Services business for both North and Latin America, helping to ensure customer success and satisfaction.

Don’t Miss VMworld’s Hands-On Labs: Now More Mobile & Flexible

For many of the 21,000 attendees expected at VMworld 2013 San Francisco, a main draw will be the Hands-On Labs (HOLs), which have grown from 120 users in 2004 to 45,000 square feet of space and 2.5 days worth of content this year.

HOLs allow participants to try out VMware products on provided computers or—starting last year—their own device, powered by hotspots around the convention center. This means users don’t have to change licenses or buy equipment, and product experts are available to provide immediate guidance. You’ll recognize many of the HOL experts and speakers as the same Professional Services Consultants who share their expertise on this blog.

Every time a lab is run, the environment is reset to a fresh state for the next participant. This is made possible by the very tools VMware lets participants test: Each workstation has a VMware Horizon View virtualized desktop running Lab Manager software, powered by VMware hybrid cloud technology. The vSphere virtualized infrastructure integrates onsite and offsite data centers (in San Francisco, Ashburn, and Miami) to enable 4,000 virtual machines to be deployed and un-deployed every hour.

Brand new this year are the Lightning Labs of 15 or 30 minutes, providing a shorter alternative to the usual 60-minute sessions—for attendees dedicated to optimizing every minute of their schedule.

This year VMworld will also serve as a testing ground for the public beta of VMware Hands-On Lab Portal, built on the Project Nee (Next-generation Education Environment) Application, which launched in November to much excitement.

Don’t forget to register for the 2013 HOLs—and VMworld if you haven’t! You can even self-register for HOLs for the first time. More details on HOLs and this year’s topics here.