There’s always been a desire on the part of the customer to reduce the amount of time it takes to deploy IT infrastructure. After all, they can’t really derive any value from their IT investment unless the systems are actually up and running. The problem is to make that happen they often wound up paying solution providers to integrate their systems, which invariably took longer than they wanted.
In response to this frustration, many IT organizations have shown a preference of late towards pre-integrated servers that come with all the server, storage and networking components tightly integrated. The problem with that approach, however, is that it often dictates that the customer, along with the solution provider, commit themselves to being locked into a single vendor.
The real opportunity, however, is to deliver a series of pre-integrated templates for creating an open pre-integrated server. That’s the approach that Brocade is trying to take with the release today at the VMworld 2011 conference of a new Virtual Compute Blocks offering.
Virtual Compute Blocks allow solution providers to mix and max server and storage components that are tightly integrated within a Brocade Ethernet fabric.
Separately, Brocade has launched a new subscription-based service that allows service providers to pay for the cost of acquiring a Brocade Ethernet switch on a monthly basis, which mimics of how service provides typically bill their customers.
IT organizations are under an intense amount of pressure to deliver value from IT investments as quickly as possible. At the same time, they need to avoid being locked into a single vendor. The Brocade approach, while still be tied to a specific Ethernet fabric, goes a long way towards maintain server and storage flexibility. Of course, the enterprising solution provider could also start creating their own totally vendor-neutral templates for creating pre-integrated servers, which is an idea that most IT organizations would probably more than appreciate.Tags: VMworld, pre-integrated servers, IT infrastructure, switch, Ethernet switch, Virtual Compute Blocks, solution providers, Ethernet fabric, channel, Brocade