On Monday, Cisco ended over a year of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) speculation and announced their intent to acquire Springpath.
In this case, instead of Cisco the networking company, we’re looking at Cisco the manufacturer of the Unified Computing System (UCS) compute platform. Springpath makes hyperconvergence software. Cisco has been running that software — rebranded as the Cisco HX Data Platform — on their UCS servers and offering that bundle as their HyperFlex HCI solution. You may remember that I wrote about HyperFlex when it first launched back in March of 2016.
I’ve been a fan of the UCS platform since its launch, and I’ve been a fan of Springpath since they came out of stealth. HyperFlex has always looked like a great HCI solution to me, and I’ve been surprised it hasn’t taken off more than it has.
Cisco’s been making an overall change to put more emphasis on software and its value-add, and the Springpath acquisition obviously fits well with that shift. The Springpath team will be joining Cisco’s Computing Systems Product Group.
At the price — $320Million in cash — it’s a bargain for Cisco even if they’re only acquiring Springpath to ensure exclusive access to the intellectual property, or ongoing support for HyperFlex. The acquisition is expected to close in Q1 of 2018, pending regulatory review.
Cisco Press Release
Last week, Cisco and Pure Storage announced FlashStack. FlashStack is a jointly-developed Converged Infrastructure (CI) solution bundle / reference architecture.
The FlashStack solution uses Cisco network and compute hardware, Pure Storage storage hardware, and VMware for the hypervisor and virtualization layer.
FlashStack CI is not a product, per se, but a Cisco Validated Design (CVD) or reference architecture (RA) that both companies will work together to support. This support includes both Pure Storage’s Flash Forward and Evergreen Storage programs. Continue reading
Yesterday, Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced that they had entered into an agreement to acquire hyperconverged infrastructure vendor SimpliVity for $650 Million in cash. This number comes in significantly lower than the rumors that had been going around, valuing SimpliVity as an acquisition target at as high as $3.9 Billion.
Long-time readers already know I’m a long-time fan of SimpliVity (in fact, they’re one place I had contacted as part of my current job search). I’d been rooting for them to make it to the IPO stage. Continue reading
Today, SimpliVity announced version 3.5 of their OmniStack Data Virtualization Platform and a new predictive analytics offering called OmniView.
Introduction to SimpliVity
Founded in 2009 with a mission to simplify IT infrastructure, SimpliVity is one of the “Names” in the hyperconverged infrastructure space. Their OmniStack Data Virtualization Platform can be purchased in one of two ways:
- Pre-installed on a hardware appliance called an OmniCube
- As software to run on approved supported server hardware like Cisco UCS and Lenovo
The key to the OmniStack Data Virtualization Platform (DVP) is the inline, global data deduplication. As Simplivity is fond of saying, the least expensive write is one you don’t need to write. Continue reading
Today Cisco announced their entry in the Hyperconverged Infrastructure marketplace, a solution called HyperFlex.
Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) can be thought of as “Virutalization in a Box”. An HCI solution is one that offers everything needed for server virtualization: compute, memory, network, storage, hypervisor, and management/orchestration for all of these.
Cisco’s HyperFlex solution uses:
- Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) to provide the compute, memory, and storage hardware
- Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnects to provide the network hardware
- Cisco UCS Manager for compute, memory, and network management
- VMware ESXi for the hypervisor
- SpringPath software, re-branded as the Cisco HX Data Platform, to provide the data services, and storage optimization and orchestration
The HyperFlex solution will initially be offered in three different ways: small footprint, capacity-heavy, and compute-heavy.
I’ll walk through the various components and the complete solution below. Continue reading
Yesterday, Nutanix announced that it had filed Form S-1 with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Form S-1 is what companies use to proposed creating an Initial Public Offering (IPO) of publicly-traded shares of stock.
Nutanix intends to list its Class A Common Stock under the ticker symbol “NTNX”. The number of shares to be offered or their initial price point hasn’t been determined yet, but Nutanix says that they aim to sell a maximum of $200 Million in shares of stock. The deal is being underwritten by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan, and Credit Suisse.
Nutanix makes a hyperconverged infrastructure appliance. They have OEM partnership deals with both Dell and Lenovo.
Nutanix is most often seen as a competitor to SimpliVity, but they try to paint themselves in a different light. In the filing, Nutanix positions itself as competing with traditional storage vendors and specifically lists EMC, NetApp, and Hitachi Data Systems. Nutanix also calls out VMware as a competitor. You can read the full text of the SEC filing here.
During their most recent fiscal year, Nutanix registered $241 Million in revenue with a net $126 Million loss.
It will be interesting to see if the market is ready to get behind hyperconvergence.
Today, SimpliVity announced three new improvements to their hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution offering. The improvements can categorized as software, hardware, and programatic:
- Software: version 3.0 of their OmniStack software-defined HCI
- Hardware: a new, smaller OmniCube, the CN-1200, designed specifically as part of a remote office / branch office (ROBO) solution
- Programatic: a five-point performance guarantee that they’re calling the HyperGuarantee
I’ll walk through each of these below. Continue reading
Last week, SimpliVity, a leader in the hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) space, announced that their OmniStack HCI solution will be available on Lenovo hardware. Prior to this announcement, the SimpliVity HCI solution could be deployed in two ways: by using the SimpliVity OmniCube appliances or by running SimpliVity OmniStack on Cisco UCS. This new announcement offers customers a wider choice of options.
I’ll walk through the new solution below. Continue reading
Yesterday, hyperconverged infrastructure vendor SimpliVity announced that they had raised $175 Million in series D funding.
Waypoint Captial led the round, with previous investors Accel Partners, Charles River Ventures, DFJ Growth, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers (KPCB), and Meritech Capital Partners joining in. This investment brings SimpliVity’s total venture funding to $276 Million.
SimpliVity’s main product is their OmniStack software-defined hyperconverged infrastructure. Its key is the accelerator card that SimpliVity developed. This card performs inline deduplication, compression, and optimization of all data. SimpliVity can be purchased as the OmniCube, or as OmniStack integrated with Cisco UCS.
What’s most interesting to me is that Waypoint Capital was originally a SimpliVity customer. They were so impressed with the platform that they decided to invest in it.
Expect to see more good things from SimpliVity as they use the additional funding to expand.
Today EMC announced their entrance into the hyperconverged infrastructure space with a new product named VSPEX Blue. The product is based on the EVO:Rail configurations supported by VMware. The EVO:Rail specifications were announced at VMworld 2014. At that time, only a few hardware vendors had EVO:Rail offerings. More have come since then, with EMC being the latest.
I’ll walk through VSPEX Blue below. Continue reading