Mixed Application Workloads in Hyperconverged


The Big Picture: How do you support multiple mixed application workloads on a shared infrastructure like hyperconverged?

In this short video, Mike Matchett meets with Mike Koponen from Pivot3 to learn how they address this issue. 


- Hi. I'm Mike Matchett with Small World Big Data. And today I wanna talk about hyperconvergence. I'm got Pivot3 coming in a second, Mike Koponen who's the senior director of product and solutions and marketing is going to be with us. Before I bring him on, I just want to say a little bit about the HCI market. We have seen HCI growing and expanding, it's definitely evolving, it's not a settled market at all. Part of the reason you might adopt HCI is because you want to simplify your IT stack. You might want to buy modular infrastructure. You might want to take the expertise that you have and focus it on something other than integrating disparate technologies.

But, when you build that HCI stack and get that piece into your data center, you still run into issues of policy based control of the resources.

You still run into issues of capacity. You still run into issues of availability, noisy neighbors, and my favorite problem, performance. Pivot3 has got some technology that they're applying to this. The problem with that, let me introduce Mike Koponen. Welcome to the show, Mike.

- [Mike Koponen] Thank you Mike, great to be with you today.

- So, in a thumbnail, can you just describe to us what Pivot3 has done in the HCI space with your Acuity Launch? What have you brought to the table?

- Good question, Mike. And you teeded up with your

introduction of hyperconverged infrastructure.

Customers have latched on to hyperconversion for searchers to take and be in where a simple, less complex way to deploy servers and storage, and provides them a lot more agility, but with that comes the challenge of how do you support multiple mixed application workloads on this shared infrastructure that you're both running virtualized applications on, and using shared storage. You've got to ensure that it's got the performance to support all those mixed application workloads including mission critical ones. And you need to be able to take in and eliminate the containship of resources that's going to exist. So, when we launched our acuity hyperconverged software platform and appliances, we take and make use of NVMe flash in those appliances, so that provides us ultra-low latency, high-performance of front-end on those appliances, and then we match that with this advanced policy-based engine that takes and has the ability to take and prioritize the more mission critical applications over the less critical ones to ensure that they get priority access to resources and thus, their performance SLAs are gonna be met. So, it's the combination of this policy-based engine, automate and simplify all of that performance management with this NVMe flash data pad that provides the ultra low latency for those performance sensitive applications.

- So, basically, in HCI, we put all our eggs in one basket, so to speak, when we put this modular infrastructure up. And if the solution just can't discriminate between workloads and it can't optimize the resources and align them properly, and effectively provide what we might call cu lass, to each workload and really ensure that all the way down to the storage layer, you're gonna get a whole big box of contention. Right, it's just something that's gonna be a problem. And I think that's what you guys are saying.

- Exactly. And that's why early on, you saw hyperconverged infrastructure being deployed more towards targeted siloed use cases, like VDI as the poster child for hyperconverged early on, where a company was going to take and stand up a virtual desktop infrastructure, and they said, hey, we're gonna deploy a separate infrastructure for that because we want to ensure that those virtual desktops have the adequate performance that they need to be successful. So to guarantee that, they brought a brand new infrastructure just to do that. Or a company said, hey, we've got this database environment and this business analytics environment that sort of stand alone, it's a departmental type thing, we'll do hyperconvergent infrastructure for that. So customers have had success with that, and they got a taste for the value of hyperconverged and thus, they've been asking more, hey, we want to support more workloads on this and consolidate more, but we need to ensure that it's going to deliver the performance, take care of this resource contention. And then have all the data services we need and so that's what we delivered with the acuity hyper converged platform.

Hyperconvergence & on-prem infrastructure

- Yeah, that's great. And, I was going to say another issue that comes up with hyperconvergence that we see today is that you're still buying on premise infrastructure. And you're still managing a data center. People are starting to think instead about how do I move some of this to a cloud? How do I build at, go all the way to a cloud? But, if I still have a need for on premise infrastructure, a lot of people do how do I build a hybrid solution that spans that? What are you doing in that space? I know you've got some announcements you're making.

- Yeah, great point, Mike. Because we do indeed see what you just described in terms of more companies want to take an Augment, their on premise infrastructure with resources available in the public cloud. Particularly in the area of backup, archiving, disaster recovery, and then we see some initial desire to take in actually push workloads out into the cloud as well, where customers need some burst capacity from an application standpoint. Or they want to spend up a quick dev ups out in the cloud. So what we at Pivot3 announced last month in March, was we launched the Pivot3 intelligent hybrid cloud engine. That builds off the native intelligence that we have in our hyperconverged software platform in that area of policy based management, dynamic resource orchestration that we spoke about earlier. And the very first instance of that that we brought to market is what we refer to as Pivot3 cloud edition for Amazon web services, AWS. And so, we're leveraging our data replication engine, all of the policy based management capabilities, to very easily allow customers to take and do backup to AWS. And it's a neat inflection point for us, in that as part of doing this, we now have the ability to run our Pivot3 hyperconverged software platform in AWS natively as an Amazon machine image and then take in and do all the orchestration and management from a central Pivot3 management application. And so, it's very easy to set up. Very easy to take and manage for customers who want to take and leverage AWS for backup.

Hypercovergence & the Cloud

- Yeah, I sort of wonder what it really means to have hyperconverged infrastructure in a cloud, because it's already a cloud, or because it's already hyper converged, or whatever. But, I think the main point is I can build a hybrid architecture where I can run mixed workloads on premise. I can burst to a cloud. I can back up to the cloud. And I think as we were talking before, I can even recover then on the cloud's side from your backup point time snapshots and everything else you would have up there, right?

- Yes, no exactly. To take off to a point that you made earlier, there is a lot of evidence that hyperconverged infrastructure is an ideal platform to base a cloud on, because we do have a lot of cloud service providers. Regional based cloud service providers, who are using Pivot3 as the basis of their services offering. Where they're providing backup as a service, a DR as a service, things of that nature. And we've done that to date through alliance partner relationships we had with companies like Zerto, Embeam and Viamware, so leveraging their tools. And so, what we've brought to market now, with this Pivot3 cloud addition for AWS is a native solution that leverages the policy-based management, the engine, the nanic resource orchestration.

- Yeah, it is, which comes first, HCI or the cloud? Or the cloud or the HCI?

- Which is the ticket, which has the egg in it?

- Right, which builds on which? Which is awesome. Yeah, I mean if the service provider is concerned about anything, it's how do I host mixed workloads? Because by definition, this has mixed clients and mixed workloads and without any way to really do that, they're building up their whole big stack of very fragile kinds of things. Right, now you can come to then and say, look, I've got basically modular building blocks to basically build your cloud out of that comes up that policy-based stuff, that comes with that orchestration and you can deliver that.

- Yeah, the other thing there too, Mike, that you made me think of is that either cloud service provider or the IT organization that's providing those private cloud services if you will. The other thing they have to be able to do is to guarantee service levels to their user community as well. So the policy-based management, the quality of service capabilities we have for our performance and data protection standpoint, allow that cloud service provider or that IT organization to very easily take and do that without having to be storage performance experts.

- Awesome. I think we're running out of time here today Mike. That was great. Any last words and where people could maybe get some more information or look at some of this stuff?

- You bet. Just go to www.Pivot3.com. Go to the Pivot3 website. We have an area of the website that's called the HCI zone. And so we have a lot of resources there from solution briefs, technical collateral, some of the really interesting stuff that people like to go to are the case studies. So that you can take and see how are their companies like yours? Are they implementing hyper conversion, specifically Pivot3? To solve the challenges that exist in their type of business, that may be similar to yours.

- Well, thank you very much. Thanks for being on today.

- Thanks, Mike. Enjoyed it.

- Yep, it's been Mike Matchett with Small World Big Data. I know that we're gonna have Pivot3 back again at some point to talk about some of their smart, safe city initiatives. Cause that's cool stuff, too. Thank you for watching and I'll see you soon.