Cisco, EMC coalition supports Oracle, VDI

The VCE joint venture rolls out converged infrastructure systems

VCE, the data center-focused joint venture formed by Cisco and EMC/VMware, this week rolled out converged infrastructure systems designed to support the latest technology from the founding companies as well as specialized offerings for Oracle and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) environments.

VCE integrates server and switching from Cisco with storage from EMC and virtualization from VMware into converged IT platforms called Vblocks. Even though these companies individually are becoming more competitive in data center, cloud and IT markets, VCE boasts over $1 billion in annual revenue, 50% annual growth, and 600+ customers with 1,200 Vblocks deployed in less than five years.

However, VCE still is unprofitable for the founding companies, having lost a cumulative $1 billion for EMC and Cisco combined since inception.

[SOLID AS A ROCK?Cisco, EMC data center coalition feels on solid ground]

Despite the losses and expectations of more, VCE continues pumping out new products. The joint venture's new Vblock 340 includes some of the latest technologies from the founding companies, including Cisco's UCS B420 M3 blade server and Nexus 3048 switch; EMC's VNX Unified Storage and XtremSW Cache flash memory; and VMware's vSphere 5.5 server. A

VCE 340 delivers twice the performance and four times the capacity of previous Vblocks, VCE officials say.

For workload optimization, VCE unveiled two specialized Vblock systems: one for high-performance Oracle databases, the other for VDI. The Oracle Vblock is designed to handle millions of Input/Output Operations per second (IOPS) for "massive" Oracle database environments, VCE says.

The VDI Vblock is similarly purpose-built, with all-flash array technology, intended for "extreme" low latency and high IO density applications inherent in VDI.

VCE rolled out a specialized system for SAP HANA environments earlier this year.

Also this week, VCE enhanced the management software for its Vblock systems. VCE Vision Intelligent Operations now features push button updates of new patches and software releases; integration with third-party toolsets; support for VMware's vCenter Operations Manager; and other management infrastructure enhancements.

VCE is also now offering so-called cloud accelerator services to enable "as-a-service" cloud environments built on Vblocks.

The Vblock 340 is available now. All other products and services will be available in the fourth quarter.

Jim Duffy has been covering technology for over 27 years, 22 at Network World. He also writes The Cisco Connection blog and can be reached on Twitter @Jim_Duffy.

Read more about data center in Network World's Data Center section.

This story, "Cisco, EMC coalition supports Oracle, VDI" was originally published by Network World.

Copyright © 2013 IDG Communications, Inc.

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