Dell unveils four new enterprise appliances

Sam Greenblatt, CTO of the Dell Enterprise Solutions Group.

Sam Greenblatt, CTO of the Dell Enterprise Solutions Group.

At Dell User Forum, Dell has introduced four new appliances, in partnership with Nutanix, Cloudera, Oracle and Fusion-IO, which it expects will assist it in its core strategy of deepening its penetration of enterprise data centers.

“We have come up with four blockbusters, which are preconfigured to go in and optimize customer environments,” said Sam Greenblatt, CTO of the Dell Enterprise Solutions Group.

Dell announced a new go to market relationship with converged infrastructure provider Nutanix, which will provide Dell with the new Dell XC Series of Web-scale Converged Appliances. These software defined appliances combine compute, storage and networking into a single offering, powered by Nutanix software.

“Nutanix is a great example of what we have been doing with software-defined storage for some time, opening and enabling multiple solutions in the market,” Greenblatt said.

“These Web-scale appliances scale out linearly through software-defined storage,” said Travis Vigil, executive director for product management, Dell Storage. “Nutanix is the leader in Web-scale converged appliances, and they are a perfect fit for Dell since the basis of the appliance is an x86 server. It’s a Dell branded appliance with a PowerEdge server powered by their software.”

Vigil said that while Dell sees the Nutanix appliance as a strong play in larger enterprises, their market is actually broader than that.

“Our goal is to bring Web scale efficiency to customers of any scale,” he said. “The target market for these is medium and large size companies, with VDI environments being specifically important.”

Greenblatt said that Nutanix’s technology is superior to other vendors who try to apply virtualization software to physical devices.

“If you look at any virtualization software that’s going after disk, the software doesn’t really deal with the physical devices well,” Greenblatt said.  “It had assumed an abundant amount of segregated disks,  but they are integrated and being hit from  multiple machines, which creates a lot of contention – VM Blender. Nutanix has come up with an ability to mitigate VM Nlender, and reduce it between 50 and 70%. That means real compute gains.”

The Dell XC Series of Web-scale Converged Appliances have planned worldwide availability during the fourth quarter of 2014.

Dell also announced a new appliance series with a long-time vendor partner, Cloudera. The new Dell In-Memory Appliances for Cloudera Enterprise are aimed at accelerating Hadoop deployments.

“Hadoop has been growing significantly among large and small enterprises, but they are using Hadopp for data warehousing, and not for analytics, even though that’s what everybody claims it’s being used for,” Greenblatt said. “Customers need to do real time or near time analytics, so with Cloudera we create streaming appliances to do this.” They will simplify and speed up otherwise complex Hadoop cluster deployments, enabling customers to actually use Hadoop efficiently for analytics to get business insights.

The appliances will bundle Dell technology with Cloudera Enterprise (Data Hub Edition including Apache Spark), Intel’s performance and security optimized chipset, and ScaleMP’s Versatile SMP (vSMP) architecture to aggregate multiple x86 servers into a single virtual machine to create large memory pools for in-memory processing.

“Apache Spark works at 100 times the speed of MapReduce, and can do a function in 15 milliseconds that takes Hadoop 20-30 seconds,” Greenblatt said. “We are working on a demo showing the difference in speed, and when you see it, your mouth just drops.

“What is really going to rock with the market is the Cloudera real time streaming,” Greenblatt added. “Others have done this, but with proprietary software. We are going with totally open software to get this done.” Greenblarr said the first major use for this was bringing in flight tracking details and updating them in real time.

The Dell In-Memory Appliances for Cloudera Enterprise will be available in pre-sized, pre-configured options. Greenblatt said availability is scheduled for the fall.

Another new appliance is the Dell Integrated Systems for Oracle 12c Database, which is purpose-built for Oracle 12c database deployments. It pre-bundles Dell infrastructure with Oracle Linux, Oracle VM, Oracle Enterprise Manager and Oracle Fusion software.

“This will be the first in a series of Oracle appliances,” Greenblatt said. “The performance increases and cost reductions will be significant, although dependent on workloads. This will bring the cost of 12c down to the midmarket because it needs fewer cores and less memory.”

Dell also announced the Dell Acceleration Appliance for Databases, which lowers the costs of running enterprise-scale database applications in large to mid-size customer environments. The pre-built, pre-integrated appliance designed to accelerate leading database environments including MySQL, Sybase, Microsoft SQL and MongoDB. It includes Dell PowerEdge Servers, Dell Storage and Dell Networking, with application acceleration technology from Fusion-io. It will be ready to ship in August.

This article originally appeared on eChannelLine.