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VCE expands Vblock with mid-range systems, dedicated management suite

21 Feb 2013
VCE vBlock

The VCE datacentre joint venture formed by Cisco and EMC has unveiled the next wave of its converged infrastructure products, introducing lower-priced mid-range Vblock integrated systems, enhanced management tools and specialised systems for specific applications starting with SAP HANA.

VCE announced the Vblock System 100 for branch office deployments and the Vblock System 200 for mid-sized customers, positioning both of these below the existing Vblock System 300 and 700 series of modules.

Meanwhile, the latter lines have been enhanced with the addition of the Vblock System 320 and 720, which offer three times the performance and three times the scalability of the existing hardware, according to Todd Pavone, VCE's vice president of product development and strategy.

"Previously, with our enterprise customers, we were selling into the core, but now with the Vblock 100, you can go to the edge, to those remote office locations, while with Vblock 200,we can say to mid-size firms that you can take advantage of the benefits the large enterprise customers been getting," he said.

VCE's raison d'être is to offer converged infrastructure to enterprise and cloud computing service providers, combining Cisco network switches and UCS blade servers with EMC VNX storage in pre-built and pre-tested configurations, delivered in racks as modular Vblocks.

Pavone claimed that figures from IDC demonstrate that this architecture delivers five times faster deployment, 83 times better availability and is cost three times less than existing silioed infrastructure.

VCE also introduced Vblock Specialised Systems, versions of the infrastructure optimised for key enterprise applications, with the SAP HANA the first to be delivered.

"We take the app and integrate it for you, certified by SAP, so it is uniquely optimised to architect that workload into Vblock," said Pavone.

Specialised Systems integrated with other enterprise applications are planned over the next 12 to 18 months, he added.

To simplify management, VCE announced Vision intelligent operations, a single management interface for managing the entire portfolio of Vblock systems and their components, delivering an administrator dashboard for VCE infrastructure.

Vision integrates fully with VMware's vCentre and vCentre Operations Management Suite, Pavone said plus VCE has an open API and SDK to enable integration with other management platforms, if required.

"We believe this is announcement today represents the foundation for the future, for that end-state datacentre that is predicitive, intelligent and adaptive," Pavone said.

Vblock System 100 is due to ship in March via VCE and its partners, while Vblock System 200, VCE Vision Intelligent Operations and Vblock Specialised System SAP HANA are all expected early in the second quarter.

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Daniel Robinson

Daniel Robinson is technology editor at V3, and has been working as a technology journalist for over two decades. Dan has served on a number of publications including PC Direct and enterprise news publication IT Week. Areas of coverage include desktops, laptops, smartphones, enterprise mobility, storage, networks, servers, microprocessors, virtualisation and cloud computing.

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