These include support for the new VMware vSphere 8 and VM vSAN announcements, and result in an improved VxRail which has jointly engineered support for vSPhere’s DPUs. They also include the addition of VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid services to Dell APEX, and the addition to the Dell Validated Design portfolio of Dell Validated Designs for AI.
SAN FRANCISCO — Former VMware owner and still-close VMware partner Dell Technologies are making a trio of important announcements at the rebadged VMware Explore event here today. One is an enhanced VxRail, which has jointly engineered support for DPUs, as well as the option of new smaller VxRails for the edge. The second change is the addition to the Dell APEX as-a-service offerings of managed VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid services, as well as new compute-only options to support more workloads and offer greater efficiency when scaling infrastructure at the edge. The third change is the addition to the Dell Validated Design portfolio of Dell Validated Designs for AI, which adds AutoML, to make the creation and deployment of AI-powered applications easier.
“This is a testament to our 20-year partnership with VMware and our commitment to deliver deep integration and jointly developed solutions for the modern multi-cloud reality,” said Shannon Champion, Vice President, Product Marketing for Dell Technologies Primary Storage, HCI, and CI.
“We are aiming to address specific challenges with these announcements,” Champion emphasized. “First, multiple clouds now require multiple tools which lack operational consistency, and there is a lack of standardization between clouds, which increases management burden. Secondly, customers need the ability to optimize data spaces, but portability can be difficult, because of security and management siloes. Finding skilled people who can juggle this is difficult.”
The third issue is management complexity, which expands the attack surface and leaves data siloed and isolated
“Finally, most customers say data is their most valuable asset, but data is only as valuable as the insights you can get,” Champion said. We aimed to address these challenges. Now we have a multi-cloud ecosystem with a single operational model and a consistent set of tools that eliminates siloes, where data and applications can be easily learned and only one set of tools needs to be learned. This also treats edge as a peer in the ecosystem, and extends the common models to the edge, and gains more insights by making AI more accessible through the ecosystem.
Champion noted that Dell Technologies and VMware are working together on this, and that Dell has over 35,000 VMware-certified Dell professionals on staff.
“Dell VxRail is still the only jointly engineered HCI system built with VMware,” Champion said. “It now has over 19,000 customers, and we perform over 800,000 hours of automated and human testing with every major VxRail release.”
Not surprisingly, Champion announced support for the newly announced major VMware software and infrastructure announcements, the new versions of VMware vSphere 8, and VM vSAN and enterprise storage architecture.
“Our new support for VSphere 8 means that we now support VMware’s rearchitected vSphere 8 that supports DPUs first,” she stated. “We are now the only HCI system to run this.” The switch to a DPU from a CPU can both improve TCO and enhance application and networking infrastructure performance.
VxRail systems for VMware’s new vSAN Enterprise Storage Architecture (ESA) should also significantly improve performance.
“It has up to 4x prior performance, and customers can easily add these new clusters into existing deployments,” Champion stated.
In addition, Dell is announcing new VxRails in the system’s smallest form factor to date.
“These are ideal for edge use cases,” Champion said. “These also include industry’s first ever hardware witness, for anywhere space and IT skills are at a premium.
The second announcement is that APEX Cloud Services with VMware Cloud has now added managed VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid services will let developers provision Kubernetes clusters through the vSphere user interface more quickly by using a container-based approach to application development.
“We have added the ability to add Tanzu Kubernetes Grid services alongside VMware based workloads,” said Chad Dunn, VP, APEX Product Management at Dell Technologies. “It makes it easy to manage the balance between VM-based and container-based resources. From an overall momentum perspective, customers are gravitating towards the idea of consuming in this manner. We see the need for Tanzu Kubernetes Grid, especially in the managed services space.”
In addition, APEX Private Cloud and APEX Hybrid Cloud offer new compute-only options that allow customers to support more workloads and increase IT infrastructure efficiency, although these are not yet available in Canada.
“Adding the compute-only option, in order to leverage existing storage services, allows customers to independently scale compute and storage to fit their needs,” Dunn said.
APEX has also been extended to Australia and New Zealand, so the new Tanzu service will hit the ground running there.
Finally, Champion announced new Dell Validated Designs for AI, in which Automatic Machine Learning (AutoML) uses automated machine learning models to help data scientists of all skill levels develop AI-powered applications.
“93% of customers have told us that they want more AI, but more than half don’t have the skills for it,” she said. “So we have introduced Dell Validated Design for AI. It uses a driverless AI to automate ML on a Dell VxRail and delivered on vSphere with Tanzu, and integrated with NVDIA GPUs and Dell PowerScale storage with Dell PowerSwitch networking.”
The new Dell VxRail solutions will be globally available beginning in the second half of 2022.
Managed VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid for APEX Cloud Services with VMware Cloud are available now in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand with additional global availability forthcoming.
APEX Private Cloud and APEX Hybrid Cloud updates are available in the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany in September with additional global availability forthcoming.
Dell Validated Designs for AI, AutoML, is globally available now.