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A Composable Infrastructure Bill of Rights

johncummings

BY PAUL DURZAN, VP Product Management, HPE Converged Data Center Infrastructure

Paul Durzan photo1.pngThe vision of composable infrastructure is creating industry buzz. As it continues to gain momentum, other infrastructure vendors are jumping on the bandwagon. It’s important for customers to be clear on what composable infrastructure really is and what it isn’t – because not just any piece of infrastructure is composable. So I’m offering this Composable Infrastructure Bill of Rights to help you evaluate how well vendors actually deliver on their promises of composability.

 Composable Infrastructure Bill of Rights.jpg

 

  1. The right to a single infrastructure for all applications. This is the whole point of Composable Infrastructure. Look for a solution that gives you the ability to provide the application with the exact optimized footprint it needs -- one that provisions and runs a workload across virtual machines, bare-metal deployment, containers, and cloud-native applications. By definition, a Composable Infrastructure should be able to run everything and store anything.
  2. The right to use all resources. A truly Composable Infrastructure provides fluid pools of compute; SAN storage and local storage; network fabric resources; and OS images that can be continually composed and decomposed based on the needs of the application. Any vendor that doesn’t provide a disaggregated infrastructure across all three infrastructure components and the operating environment doesn’t have a truly composable solution.
  3. The right to software-defined intelligence. Composable Infrastructure should remove complexity from provisioning and maintenance. A composable solution provides programmable and template-driven software intelligence. This layer of intelligence should be able to understand and control all parts of the infrastructure. Capabilities for self-discovery and auto-integrating across all components of the infrastructure are built in, allowing new resources to be automatically discovered and integrated into the greater whole. The software-defined intelligence takes disaggregated pools of resources and forms optimized footprints for the application.
  4. The right to a single unified API. Today, each element of infrastructure in your data center probably has its own distinct API, requiring lots of complicated code or management tools to configure and provision a single workload. A Composable Infrastructure should provide one simple and open RESTful API that allows you to abstract and control every element of infrastructure, including compute, storage, and fabric.
  5. The right to use your favorite tools, chosen from a vibrant ecosystem. DevOps teams have preferred sets of tools that allow them to rapidly provision and deploy applications. Those tools should still work in a Composable Infrastructure. Look for a broad, vibrant and growing ecosystem that delivers native integration with tools like HPE Cloud Service Automation, Ansible, Chef, Docker, Microsoft, OpenStack, Puppet, and VMware, and will grow to include others in the future. If a vendor does not have a strong partner eco-system, then they’re not really serious about composability.
  6. The right to true infrastructure-as-code. DevOps teams are accustomed to working in the cloud, using code to provision the cloud resources necessary to run their applications. Since there’s no better place on the planet to put a private cloud than on your own bare metal, your solution should allow DevOps teams to provision and control physical resources from their applications, giving them true infrastructure-as-code ability that enables continuous deployment. Think of it as bare metal at the speed of cloud, with templates that unify the process for provisioning compute, connectivity, storage and OS deployment in a single step – just like provisioning VM instances from the public cloud.
  7. The right to products designed for composability. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Some vendors might try, by recycling an old product, but don’t be fooled. You’re looking for a solution that is designed for composability from the ground up – an optimized hardware, software and API design working across compute, storage, fabric and images to allow you to provision the right resource at the right time to run any workload.
  8. The right to a return on your investment. What’s the point of making an investment if it doesn’t pay for itself? The right solution enables you to eliminate over-provisioning and stranded resources. It breaks down silos – it doesn’t create them. Each workload uses only the resources it needs and returns those resources to the pool when it’s finished. This allows IT to align its processes and services around a single delivery model, reducing complexity and cost.
  9. The right to future-proof your business. With a Composable Infrastructure, your infrastructure should get out of the way. There should be no limits to scalability and no barriers to creativity. Look for a solution that is designed for composability: ready for any data center, it should allow you to adopt at your own pace, and provide the flexibility to deal with whatever the future brings. Your vendor should be able to deliver a very clear and consistent vision of the future, with dedicated R&D and committed roadmaps.
  10. The right to start on the path to composability now. Mark Twain once said, “the secret of getting ahead is getting started.” Find a solution that allows you to get started when you’re ready, and to proceed at the speed that is best for your business. Your composable solution should allow you to deploy in incremental steps, delivering the benefits of composability where they are most needed today without disrupting your critical, core-business applications.

Composable Infrastructure will change the way you operate your data center, opening new opportunities for speed and flexibility while removing cost and complexity. As you consider composable solutions, remember your essential rights to obtain everything this emerging architectural vision has to offer.

Today Hewlett Packard Enterprise announces HPE Synergy, a true, built-from-the-ground-up Composable Infrastructure. You can read more about HPE Synergy here.

#Composable

Paul

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About the Author

johncummings

Editor and writer with 12+ years experience in the corporate software and technology sectors.

Comments
Mattjohnson

useful article. Thanks for sharing

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