Dell EMC rethinks converged infrastructure with next-gen VxBlock System 1000

While in the old Dell EMC converged lineup, a System 1000 would have been a new high-end model, the new VXBlock completely restructures the approach, and integrates all storage types in one offering. It makes this a single-model family with additional flexibility, greater cost efficiencies and simplified lifecycle management.

Today, Dell EMC is announcing the Dell EMC VxBlock System 1000, a rethinking of their approach to converged infrastructure, based upon a single unified design that supports four separate Dell EMC storage technologies – Unity, VMAX, XtremIO, and Isilon – as well as their data protection products and Cisco rack and blade servers.

“In the past, we had three different VxBlock models – the 350, the 540 and the 740,” said Jon Siegal, Vice President, Dell EMC Converged Infrastructure, Product Marketing. “Each of these was optimized for different applications and workloads depending on the flavour of data storage in each [the Unity, XtremIO and VMAX respectively]. Now there is only one model. We’ve done away with separate models for each type of storage, and replaced it with the ability to mix and match four different types of storage. The System 1000 can support everything from Unity in the mid-range up in one system which gives more flexibility than before.”

Siegal said that the VxBlock 1000’s native support for mixed technologies will extend to support additional technologies as well.

“The 1000 will not only supports the technologies of today, but is also future-proofed for additional technologies like VVMe, faster compute, and faster fabric,” he said. As a result, don’t look for any additional VxBlock models in this family.

“We will not be introducing new models for this,” Siegal said. “The VxBlock 1000 can handle all the workloads.”

The addition of Isilon capabilities of the VXBlock 1000 adds a new Big Data analytics capability that wasn’t there before.

“Adding Isilon enables this to support more use cases than CI has supported in the past,” Siegal said. “It can handle all modern data centre workloads – everything from general purpose to mission-critical.”

While VxBlock in the past has supported Cisco UCS B-Series Blade Servers, customers can now choose Cisco UCS C-Series Rack Servers for their compute. A broad range of Dell EMC data protection products is also available in the offering.

Siegal emphasized that the next-gen capabilities also deliver significant feeds and speeds upgrades.

“The VxBlock 1000 supports up to 10 storage systems in a single block – up from one before,” he said. “It now supports up to 800 servers, up from 512. We have significantly increased the scale of the architecture.”

The new architecture also has significant cost advantages.

“By leveraging the new system-wide shared architecture for resource pooling, we can save customers up to 60 per cent in footprint,” Siegal said. “The value proposition of CI also includes simplifying lifecycle management of the technologies. With this, we enable the customer to have a single upgrade process,  as opposed to having required several in the past. It means that they can manage upgrades much more simply, and with fewer resources. Depending on the specific upgrade, this can save them between 30 per cent and 75 per cent of the time to upgrade the environment.”

Another advantage of this integrated system will be the speed at which new technologies can be added.

“We will be able to bring new technologies to market faster,” Siegal said. “New technologies in past had to be pre-validated against everything. With this integrated format, we will be able to get them into the  hands of partners faster.”

While Dell EMC converged infrastructure has always been a strong partner play, Siegal said that it is enhanced with the VxBlock 1000.

“There’s definitely a lot of simplicity here, which is always appreciated by channel partners,” he indicated. “The VxBlock has also been a fast track for partners to simplify and modernize the data centre for customers. The ability now to pull much of the Del EMC portfolio into this model only enhances that.”

The Dell EMC VxBlock 1000 is available now.