VMware EVO speeds up software-defined datacentre delivery

VMware has announced the launch of a family of hyper-converged infrastructure products to help customers face the world of the 'brave new IT'.
Written by Aimee Chanthadavong, Contributor

Forming the basis for VMware's journey into the world of the "brave new IT" for 2014 and beyond will be the software-defined datacentre (SDDC), hybrid cloud, and end-user computing (EUC).

Speaking at VMworld 2014 in San Francisco, VMware chief marketing officer Robin Matlock said the company's strategy is a continuation on the priorities it had outlined one and a half years ago, with a belief that it will continue to be the way forward in IT.

"SDDC allows you to seamlessly extend your private cloud into your hybrid cloud. Our move into end-user computing has been growing with our acquisition of AirWatch, which allows us to innovate and support your increasingly mobile network," she said.

The tech giant's chief executive Pat Gelsinger indicated that the transformation of the "brave new IT" is similar to the fluidity of water, where it's a "basic source of life, it creates energy, but at the same time can be powerfully destructive, and we see that water take many forms because it's flowing and moving", and draws on examples such as how education and work are no longer restricted to a classroom or office.

"We're seeing this throughout different industries, where in today's world, it's becoming increasingly more liquid than ever before," he said, noting that the "brave will thrive" from the technology changes the most.

As part of the company's overarching aim to deliver SDDC, hybrid cloud, and EUC to its customers, VMware is also hoping that a key benefit out of this will be bridging and breaking down silos between decisions that enterprises are often faced with, such as whether they should create traditional apps or cloud-native apps; whether to satisfy the IT department or developers; and whether to stay on-premises or off-premises.

"Our approach at VMware is to bridge and to be the 'and' across these divides, so we can allow you to have safe and secure, and instant and elastic scale," Gelsinger said.

"Moving from the tyranny of the 'or' to the power of 'and', and that's what we think of as brave new IT. It also means letting go of things in the past like a hardware-defined datacentre, because processes are slow, brittle, and manual, and we have to leave that behind. Future is about brave new IT, and three core characteristics of this environment are fluid, instant, and choice."

In light of the company's continued focus, VMware announced the launch of VMware EVO, a family of hyper-converged products — which the company believes will be the "next evolution of infrastructure" — that will bundle hardware and software into a single, integrated solution, to be delivered by its OEM partners by the second half of 2014.

The first product to be launched as part of the family will be EVO:RAIL, an appliance solution for mid-range needs that can be rolled out, according to Gelsinger, in less than 15 minutes out of the box, making it an alternative to existing — and slower — "build your own" or converged infrastructure options.

In conjunction with initial partners Dell, EMC, Fujitsu, Inspur, NetOne, and Supermicro, VMware will streamline the purchase and deployment of EVO:RAIL, where its partners will offer it as a single product, covering software, hardware, and support and services, with partners offering a single point-of-contact support.

Gelsinger said he expects other key parties to join the board in the future.

VMware also plans to deliver the second member of the EVO family, known as EVO:RACK. While its still in tech preview stage and the release is not expected until next year, Gelsinger said EVO:RACK will enable businesses to scale out a cloud SDDC environment in two hours or less.

Aimee Chanthadavong travelled to VMworld 2014 as a guest of VMware.

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