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Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI) for Data Centers

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Data centers today, are not merely massive structures with hardware gear. They are a symbol of a digital revolution which has impacted enterprises across the globe, in changing the way in which IT is consumed and experienced. The ever increasing demand of enterprise users and their customers have always pushed IT to develop innovative ways of consumption, which means that IT has to evolve every day to stay relevant to the growing needs of the market. We have seen virtualization taking IT by storm, which in turn led to the emergence of cloud. Cloud started a revolution in how IT operates. The growing pressure of performance on an enterprise pushes not only its ecosystem but also its IT, which in turn demands optimum utilization of Data centers and its capacity at every layer be it Compute, Storage or Networking. Software is the only route by which an abstraction can be presented in the IT infrastructure and when everything is driven through the Software defined way we term it as Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI).


Now fast forward to the present and imagine the large number of applications that each enterprise has. Imagine the computing, storage and networking that each application requires to run in this era. Infrastructure provisioning is not easy, you need an army of domain experts, software engineers, network admins, system admins and storage experts, to come together and solve the complex puzzle that will enable the enterprise’s business. While it still works, this approach has drawbacks which are slowly proving to become tiresome, especially in this period of unprecedented scrutiny on IT budgets. It is very labor-intensive and costly since it requires a large number of resources and software. This approach is also very slow. While TCO is a very important factor, it is the lethargy of the system that serves as the killing blow.

HCL’s Next Generation Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI) services overview:

We at HCL feel that the IT is rapidly moving towards a consumption based model. The current IT architectures, manual operations and knowledge base of resources, all have to be elevated in order to have a better, agile and uncomplicated IT deliver model. Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI) is the ideal framework to move an enterprise to the service led consumption model, but SDI is not a single technology, it is a blend of compute, network and storage virtualization with a view to minimize vendor dependency and build a self-healing and self-sustainable IT delivery model.

Below are some of the benefits that can be realized from SDI:

  • Reduced TCO: Cloud and virtualization technologies will increase utilization of current assets and reduce the need to provision extra infrastructure to meet the peak load demands.
  • Automated resource provisioning: Automating resource provisioning will greatly help in reducing the time to market, simplify monitoring and manageability, and improve SLAs. It will also reduce the number of specialists required to maintain the data center.
  • Efficiency and agility of data centers: Allows allocation of infrastructure resources to business needs and application requirements

SDI Methodology

SDI has multiple components ranging from public cloud to in-house automation. HCL’s approach towards SDI is to bring the best of both worlds to the customer in terms of cloud services and automation. The fastest route to have an SDI enabled infrastructure is the ‘buy-the-packaged-solution’ route that providers like Microsoft cloud platform system and VMWare EVO rail, the other critical path is to build-it-yourself, but this is a very long term and complex process not to be taken lightly. It is for this reason that HCL takes the middle path by going for packaged solutions but customizing various solutions to meet specific business requirements. Most enterprises will go for SDI in a phased manner, in order to realize the complete benefit of SDI services.

HCL’s State of the Art SDI LAB

HCL looks at SDI management as a critical phase in IT transformation. We have invested more than 2 Million USD to build a state of the art Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI) lab spreading across more than 2500 Sq. Ft with all the latest technology stacks ranging from converged/hyper converged systems, Software defined solutions like VIPR, SCALE IO to Openstack, to Microsoft and VMware based cloud solutions. The lab is run by 20+ HCL architects and engineers to deliver best of breed services and PoCs.

Today, it is mostly about experience and new ways of IT consumption. Enterprises can no more survive in this market without being innovative. The paradigm is changing, time is running out. We at HCL are enabling our customers to tread ahead confidently.

What You Can Expect

In every SDI project, HCL will focus on primarily five objectives:

  • Service based consumption
  • Policy based automation and orchestration
  • Analytics based agile operations
  • Software defined and controlled infrastructure
  • Service based processes and integrations
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