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Defining hyperconverged infrastructure Part 1: The anatomy of the HPE SimpliVity 380


The HPE SimpliVity hyperconverged infrastructure powered by Intel® was engineered to provide a simple, scalable architecture that can deliver both predictable and peak performance while ensuring full data protection. Starting with a single node, the HPE SimpliVity solution can be grown to a globally distributed network of nodes that can very efficiently move and protect data between physical locations, while also ensuring high-availability at each site. This post provides an in-depth look at the entire HPE SimpliVity hyperconverged infrastructure from the inside of a node, all the way through to a globally-distributed, multisite implementation of the HPE SimpliVity Federation.


The HPE SimpliVity 380 node is the basic building block for the HPE SimpliVity hyperconverged infrastructure, and is therefore designed with resiliency in mind. These building blocks leverage the HPE OmniStack software overlayed on the industry’s best selling server, the HPE ProLiant DL380, ensuring every node includes tried-and-true redundancies like dual power supplies, fully redundant fans, multiple NIC ports, and error-checking and correcting memory. The internal disk storage is protected through hardware RAID to ensure a node stays available even during multiple disk failures.

Included in every node is an HPE-designed PCIe card called the HPE OmniStack Accelerator Card. This card is connected to the HPE OmniStack Virtual Controller utilizing hypervisor pass-through technology that allows it to avoid any latencies that may be caused by the hypervisor. The Accelerator Card handles all data efficiency operations, providing inline deduplication and compression without any penalties and eliminating overhead that consumes hypervisor host CPU cycles. This leaves more resources available to the business applications running on the node, while also eliminating the consumption of IOPS on the disk drives caused by writing duplicate data. Many customers, as sited in this whitepaper, report significant performance improvements because of the HPE SimpliVity accelerated data efficiency.


 data-virtualization-platform-within-simplivity-data-center.pngMultiple HPE SimpliVity 380 nodes are combined into an HPE SimpliVity cluster. The HPE SimpliVity cluster is a logical construct within the infrastructure and is separate from, but closely aligned to, the hypervisor’s cluster construct. All the HPE OmniStack Virtual Controllers on these nodes combine together to present one unified pool of resources to the hypervisors. 


Combining multiple clusters together creates an HPE SimpliVity Federation. The Federation construct allows for the utilization of backup policies across data centers, the ability to perform backups and restores, and easily and efficiently move VMs between data centers. All sites are managed via a single interface, utilizing the native hypervisor management and orchestration tools – VMware vCenter, VMware vRealize Automation, UCS Director, etc. When adding new clusters into a federation, the network topology (either hub-and-spoke or mesh) is detected and the interconnections between the different clusters are automatically configured to match.

So there you have it, a micro-to-macro look at the components involved in an HPE SimpliVity hyperconverged infrastructure from the individual components within an HPE SimpliVity 380 node to a globally distributed, multisite implementation of an HPE SimpliVity Federation. This information and far more details about the platform can be found in our HPE SimpliVity Hyperconverged Infrastructure for VMware vSphere white paper.

Be sure to read the other articles in this series:

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Brian Knudtson
Sr. Technical Marketing Manager
Hewlett Packard Enterprise

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About the Author


A former administrator, implementation engineer, and solutions architect focusing on virtual infrastructures, I now find myself learning about all aspects of enterprise infrastructure and communicating that to coworkers, prospects, customers, influencers, and analysts. Particular focus on HPE SimpliVity today.