The Data Center continues to be software driven. For those IT professionals who have been implementing software solutions for years, this is an exciting time. The hardware and its related embedded tools finally meet the intelligence of the software which sits on top of it. On the flip side however, those IT professionals who have been racking and installing servers for the longest time may have a harder time adjusting to this change. Data Center Automation is the Holy Grail for IT professionals… or at least I think it is. I’ve heard automation labelled as IT for lazy people and even one dinosaur hunter I spoke with once, called it MonkeyWare. And I quote. “Nothing beats the scripts I have written and kept in my toolbox for 20 years.”
As most of us move into the 21st century, IT is about choosing a consistent and efficient platform to service your business needs. That is why I love the Cloud, IAAS and PAAS so much. Friday I sat in a private HP launch of their newest datacenter automation suite of software…HP OneView. I decided to put together a little summary and important details of my session today.
The 2 speakers were
Jeff Carlat director of Product Management, Converged Systems
Bryan Jacquot – Chief Technologist in the HP Converged Systems organization
HP OneView Value Proposition
HP OneView definitely brings tons of value to the Datacenter and its administrators. The solution truly defines and depicts the Software Defined Data Center. Nothing more can be said. HP OneView automates your entire data center through a comprehensive, flexible and easy to navigate tool. Over time, HP OneView will “consolidate legacy tools like Virtual Connect Enterprise Management, Insight Control, and Systems Insight Manager. Also, the integration to some of the tools on the HP Software side like Operations Orchestration make this very attractive for very large data centers who perform mundane tasks to keep their data center functioning optimally. HP OneView can provision virtual machines, deploy software and generally providide data center management capabilities from one single pane of glass. I like this solution. I have been working with management software in the data center for 15+ years, so I get it and yes I may have a BIAS opinion when it comes to management software as a whole.
HP OneView hurdles it may face
Will the HP hardware account teams be properly enabled to sell this simplified management solution to their customers? The price tag is not relative to adding floor mats to your new vehicle. Starting at $799 per server, the ROI may be difficult to justify for many smaller customers who don’t spend as much time as some of the admins for larger data centers do. Personally at this price point, I believe, you need 500+ servers if not thousands of servers for the business case to make a lot of sense. Hardware reps, whether they are knowledgeable or not in converged infrastructure do not like to sell software. The sales cycles for software requires more conceptual discussions, possible demos and yes sometimes even a proof of concept. The software defined data center is here.. but are the IT professionals Software Defined yet? Despite my negativity about the hardware account teams, I believe sooner or later IT organizations will simply realize this is par for the course, slowly adapting to the converged infrastructure approach where software truly manages your data center. If I had 2 things to suggest to HP they would be the following.
- Give this software to your customers for a very affordable price, so that it becomes worth their while to begin using it and relying on it.
- Enable your hardware folks to sell the converged infrastructure CONCEPT first, and blades, servers, storage and networking gear second.
Although the product has been demonstrated before, (without it’s official name) the official market release will take place in Product availability is early Q’4 2013.
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