Getting Ready for the Software-Defined Data Center
There is a lot of talk about the coming of the Software-Defined Data Center. Much of it reminds me of the early cloud computing days, where no one is really quite sure what it is but every vendor has one.
Still, the idea of a hybrid cloud environment where an application’s specific requirements for compute, storage and network resources are decoupled from hardware dependencies is intriguing. Why is there so much interest in the software-defined data center? First, you have market forces like customer demands for new products and personalized services and fierce competition in a global economy driving the need for faster deployment of new applications. It can be challenging just to keep up with new requirements, never mind getting out in front of them to establish a leadership position. Add to that technology forces like fast-growing volumes of data that require storage and governance, as well as how easy it is to access affordable pay-as-you-go cloud resources, and it becomes clear that today’s hardware-centric infrastructure just can’t keep up. What’s needed is a completely flexible and scalable infrastructure that addresses both line-of-business needs for fast service delivery and IT organization needs for process control to meet SLAs and security requirements.
At SUSE we’re taking a fresh approach to this emerging trend. Rather than build a software stack based solely on our products, we start with a pragmatic look at today’s infrastructure and how it can evolve to meet changing needs. SUSE’s software-defined data center vision encompasses the rapid delivery and management of business applications, where workload infrastructure is allocated from a unified resource pool based on the each application’s requirements for performance, scalability and reliability. This gives IT leaders the flexibility to choose the innovative technologies that meet requirements for fast, efficient service delivery while maintaining control and avoiding vendor lock-in.
Open source solutions will drive the fastest adoption of software defined data-centers. This has the benefit of 1) leveraging existing investments in physical and virtual systems; 2) providing a choice of vendors for best of breed solutions; and 3) getting rapid innovation by a large community of experts who introduce new features, resolve issues and drive standards. SUSE OpenStack Cloud provides an excellent orchestration engine for dynamically allocating compute, storage and networking resources in a software-defined data center. SUSE Enterprise Storage is built on Ceph. This not only helps reduce CapEx by delivering enterprise-class storage at commodity server prices, but is inherently self-managing and self-healing to reduce OpEx as well. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server includes support for Docker Linux container technology, which provides an easy way to quickly and consistently deploy new applications. These and other SUSE products deliver a robust foundation for building and managing a software-defined data center from a broad choice of open-source partner solutions.
SUSE Expert Days 2016 events focus on how organizations can start the journey toward a software-defined datacenter. I encourage you to take advantage of these full-day, no-charge seminars, which are scheduled worldwide in multiple cities. The event features conversations on the elements that make up a software-defined data center, product presentations and demonstrations from SUSE experts. For a preview of the events, register for the webinar “Starting to Build your Software-Defined Data Center” at suse.com/events/webinars/. To register for a SUSE Expert Days event near you, go to suse.com/expertdays.