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Making the right decision before you BUY is the secret: Evaluating your convergence vendor

Duncan-HPCI on ‎04-11-2014 09:22 AM

Through feedback I received from my last blog: We’re listening. How do your peers rank infrastructure convergence vendors?, it’s clear it’s becoming more of a challenge to separate the reality from all of the hype. This is especially true when it comes to vendor claims about converged infrastructure. One thing peculiar about the IT industry is that when a good idea catches on, everyone starts talking about it as if they were the ones that gave birth to it. That’s the way it is with converged infrastructure. While we at HP originated the movement five years ago, the converged infrastructure chant is now heard from almost every vendor. And to be quite honest, it’s getting harder to separate fact from fiction.


HP Converged Infrastructure is not complicated — simplify and align IT to the speed of the business for any workload at any scale. Not a new concept, but certainly more important than ever given the fluidity of the new world of anywhere, anytime information access. What is relatively new are the solutions that deliver this value proposition – lead by raise in popularity of integrated systems (delivered by HP through the HP ConvergedSystem family). These systems allow you to move fast to gain convergence value. Doing that, you can accelerate innovation by breaking down IT silos, increasing utilization, and speeding procurement and deployment. It puts IT professionals back in the driver’s seat doing what the business most needs them to do—meet their app and service requests fast, accurately, and securely. In talking with customers, I have found that those who have adopted integrated systems will never go back to the old ‘silo’ ways of building their IT.


As imagined, every vendor puts their own spin on their version of reality. That’s why we called upon the Gartner Group to help enterprise IT folks sort through the confusion and learn how converged infrastructure—what they call fabric-based infrastructure (FBI)—can help your business move faster. Gartner analyst George Weiss has outlined the drivers for infrastructure convergence, and he provides a 12-point checklist of questions you should ask every convergence vendor. We’ve gone on record with our answers to Gartner’s 12 questions. Here are some of the highlights:


Question #2: Do the solutions preserve the current strategic investments?

We think this is critical, so we have a two-pronged approach offering fast-track solutions to get quick business value in key projects and a more gradual step-by-step approach for heterogeneous installed base environments for investment protection.


Question #3: Can anticipated workload performance demands be met or exceeded?

To help ensure they are, HP offers an application-centric approach to converged infrastructure that optimizes performance for specific workloads: We build solutions for massive scale or hyperscale apps for things like web services sites. We build solutions for those hundreds of mainstream apps like sharepoint, email, CRM, file and print. And we build solutions for those big time business critical applications for things like your ERP systems, patient records, financials, credit cards, 911 ... to name a few.


Question #9: Can I still implement best-of-breed choices?

Of course we’d like the chance to show you the HP ConvergedSystem family of integrated systems. Or how our modern portfolio of servers, storage, networking, and management are the best of breed. But if you’re committed to another vendor’s solutions, we’re committed to the open integration needed to make them work together.



12 Questions.jpgI’ll let you explore Gartner’s other nine questions—and our answers—on your own.


You can access the entire report including the results of their poll of IT leaders on fabric-based infrastructure plans and review suggestions from George Weiss for how to weight a vendor’s answers and apply a scoring system. He even suggests how to use the 12 questions in an RFP.


Check it out.


Gartner says you shouldn’t force fit your needs to any vendor’s solution. We agree. That’s why HP is all about being a trusted advisor to help you build a better enterprise through the broadest portfolio of industry tested and market proven converged infrastructure solutions. You can check that outon our web site.




About the Author


Duncan Campbell is the HP Geo Focal Executive for Converged Infrastructure. HP is all things CI. Primary focus of his CI blog: Ruthless standardization of Infrastructure, Energy Efficiency, Server, Storage & Network Consolidation, management tools & processes, virtualization, data security & compliance, data center consolidation, automation and infrastructure as a service. How does the cloud impact your data center strategy. Tools to help build blue prints to a NGDC. Best practices & gotchas

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