EMC joins the race for Private Cloud

Private cloud with rainbow

Posted on Tuesday, October 20, 2015

EMC has finally released details of its new ScaleIO solution, the fruit of an acquisition completed last year. ScaleIO allows organizations to build a ‘hyper converged infrastructure’ using standard x86 server hardware.

The ScaleIO platform uses switches from Arista Networks to link storage area network products from EMC, overlaid with the ScaleIO hypervisor to deliver Cloud-like capabilities. EMC estimate the platform will scale to over 1000 nodes, well ahead of rival offerings that support around 30. Manufacturer tests suggest that a 500 node implementation of ScaleIO will generate over 100 million IOPs – significantly faster than traditional SAN systems.

Bringing the Cloud back in house

The IT industry has entered a period of introspection, with many enterprises reconsidering the wisdom of pushing data offsite into datacenters. Questions about data sovereignty, control and privacy have seen Private Cloud deployments surge ahead of their Public counterparts.

EMC’s move is clearly intended to get in on the Public Cloud trend, providing clients with the same fully scalable, flexible approach to infrastructure that makes hosted Cloud service so popular. The preconfigured hyper converged solution helps to reduce deployment timescales so that owners are able to get started with the new platform more quickly.

As well as the confidence that comes from using products from a leading storage vendor, ScaleIO allows organisations to expand capacity at relatively low cost. Generic x86 servers can be added as new nodes at far lower cost than dedicated SAN units for instance.

Perhaps more importantly still, existing assets can be repurposed for use in the ScaleIO environment, helping to reduce the total cost of ownership of a Private Cloud solution by leveraging owned assets and associated storage.

Early days for ScaleIO

The framework infrastructure for ScaleIO remains quite limited at present; there is no alternative to using the bundled Arista Networks switches yet, although there are plans in motion to offer more choice. ScaleIO is yet another step outside “pure” storage for EMC, offering customers a genuinely useful platform, and allowing EMC to improve their own offerings as they fight for increased marketshare.

Unfortunately the recent acquisition of EMC by Dell further complicates matters as the direction of the company is now unclear. It could be that ScaleIO goes on to be a flagship product for the new company, but only time will tell.

In the meantime, call the CDS team on +1 866 237 8008 to learn more about how your existing unused, or post warranty, hardware can be safely put back into service, to assist with your growing storage and processing needs.

We are also on hand to provide support and advice for all EMC customers as we wait for the details of the Dell merger to become clear. With a global network of support engineers and access to one of the world’s largest OEM-approved spare parts inventories, we have everything needed to deliver trustworthy and reliable maintenance and service, regardless of the eventual outcome.