Home » Uncategorized » Cloud brokerage, big data in spotlight at Dell World

Cloud brokerage, big data in spotlight at Dell World

Tech Page One

dell cloudNew tools for securing the endpoint, a cloud brokerage and a converged architecture offering were among the highlights at the Dell World 2014 conference in Austin, Texas.

“The world is being redefined by the forces of cloud, big data, mobility and security,” Michael Dell said at a press conference Nov. 4. “Data is the most valuable resource and mobility puts that power in the hands of more people.”

Dell World brought developments in all of these areas with a new Dell Cloud Marketplace, KACE mobile security appliances and a partnership with Microsoft to enable predictive analytics in a scalable cloud environment through the Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Service.

Cloud Marketplace offers unified console

With cloud adoption across midsize organizations reaching an all-time high, Dell has launched a beta version of its Dell Cloud Marketplace to allow developers and IT managers to compare, purchase, use and manage public cloud services from Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Joyent using a single, unified console. It provides a Web location to buy, use, manage and bill for public cloud services.

“The Dell Cloud Marketplace will help customers embrace the public cloud if they want to,” Michael Dell said Nov. 4. “Software is getting better and better at managing converged infrastructure so companies can manage their own private clouds.”

In fact, 97 percent of respondents to the Dell Global Technology Adoption Index use or plan to use cloud computing.

Companies can use the Dell Cloud Marketplace to deploy single, multiple and hybrid cloud environments across several accounts. The service acts as a one-stop place to bill for all cloud services a company uses.

One challenge companies face is pulling resources from multiple clouds with data and distributed application deployments not integrating well across cloud platforms.

“There are a lot of islands of data and no integration between services,” said James Thomason, CTO for Dell’s Cloud Marketplace.

Dell will enable data management across public and hybrid clouds through a new partnership with Delphix, a software company that develops software for building and testing applications built on relational databases.

With its partnership with Delphix, companies will be able to take snapshots of a point in time and deploy in multiple applications, a feature crucial to disaster recovery strategies.

A brokerage platform lets companies maintain visibility as they must adhere to cloud governance requirements, said Thomason.

The cloud brokerage will be able to shorten the value chain for both cloud vendors and consumers as well as consolidate billing, according to Thomason.

“What a cloud brokerage does is it shortens the value chain so that as a consumer I can pick and choose elements or services from a catalog, deploy it immediately and immediately realize that value,” Thomason said.

Customers pay for only the services they use, so if it doesn’t work for them, they “shut it down and move on to the next solution and so that really accelerates the value chain,” he said.

The brokerage simplifies cloud management under one console and works like an online travel site. By providing a single view of cloud services, the brokerage functions like an Expedia for the cloud, Thomason noted.

Dell also helps customers manage multiple public and private cloud environments with its Dell Cloud Manager platform.

PowerEdge FX Architecture offers data center workload optimization

On Nov. 5 at the conference, Dell also launched its PowerEdge FX Architecture to enable IT managers to better customize their data center workloads. It features the new 13th-generation Dell PowerEdge servers. The converged infrastructure of the PowerEdge FX offers server, storage and networking within a single 2U, or 3.5-inch, enclosure.

The PowerEdge FX Architecture is “the ultimate in converged infrastructure for the data center,” Dell proclaimed in his keynote.

The 2U space can hold up to 16 servers, and the shared cooling and power make a company’s infrastructure more efficient, Luke Mahon, marketing director for Dell’s Enterprise Solutions Group, noted.

“We’re able to offer the benefits of the converged architecture in a 2U chassis, which means we’re able to limit the cost of entry significantly and limit the impact into regular data centers,” Mahon said.

By sharing cooling, power, and networking and PCI expansion slots, companies can become more agile by using a converged infrastructure and reduce their operating costs. The strategy can also simplify workload deployment.

With a modular, scalable platform, the FX Architecture could help businesses such as hospitals maintain network uptime, according to Kyle Stewart, technology manager at Overlake Hospital in Bellevue, Washington.

“In the past, as our VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) environment grew, my team was forced to make a forklift upgrade of our shared storage systems to keep up with demand,” Stewart said in a statement. “With the Dell PowerEdge FX converged architecture, we now have a platform that scales linearly and significantly reduces the impact of an outage.”

Auditing data in the cloud

As part of its efforts in the cloud, Dell also announced on Nov. 5 the integration of Dell Change Auditor for Cloud Storage with Dell Data Protection | Cloud Edition. Change Auditor tracks user activity in applications such as Active Directory, SharePoint, Exchange and Microsoft Lync through a central console.

Meanwhile, Dell Data Protection | Cloud Edition provides encryption for data placed in the cloud. By integrating these two products together, companies get real-time protection, auditing and alerting of data that’s updated, modified and downloaded from public cloud storage sites. It also allows IT managers to provide greater encryption for organizations sharing data through cloud services such as Dropbox and OneDrive.

During the conference, the company also announced that Dell Software Suite now incorporates Dell Secure Mobile Access, which enables mobile workers to be productive but also allows IT managers to enforce controls on users granted VPN access through the devices.

Gaining insights from big data

Only 39 percent of respondents understand how to get value from big data and are pursuing it, according to the Dell Global Technology Index, a survey of IT decision-makers at midsize organizations, released Nov. 4.

“Big data has high value when it’s done right,” Dell said. “Most don’t know really how to get value from it.”

The subject of big data took the spotlight during the conference’s opening keynote in a panel discussion moderated by Geoff Colvin, senior editor-at-large for Fortune magazine.

Colvin asked what is the most important thing for people to understand about big data to put it to work.

One key strategy is to use big data to manage human capital through recruiting, retainment and offering rewards, according to Michael Chui, a partner at the McKinsey Global Institute.

“Applying big data for people is a truly interesting place to go,” Chui said.

Companies shouldn’t worry about security of big data in the cloud, according to Tom Reilly, CEO of Cloudera, which has partnered with Dell on an in-memory appliance powered by Dell PowerEdge servers.

“Data in cloud is more secure than in any of your data centers,” Reilly said, noting that “cloud providers think of security from the ground up.”

Dell Software announced Nov. 5 that customers of Microsoft’s Azure scalable hybrid cloud environment can use Dell’s Statistica advanced analytics platform to gain predictive analytics capabilities to help doctors better anticipate patient outcomes or retail companies to predict customers’ buying patterns. Statistica offers secure compliance support and more than 16,000 analytical options.

KACE appliance secures endpoint devices

Products such as Dell KACE are designed to manage an entire life cycle, across all platforms, including Windows and Linux, said Bill Odell, vice president of marketing for endpoint systems management at Dell Software, at a Dell World 2014 session on securing end-user devices.

Securing products from end to end is essential, and the KACE 1000 Management Appliance, now in version 6.0,  allows companies to push out batches to endpoint devices, Odell noted.

Securing the endpoint is more challenging than ever with routers, wearable devices and smart printers all connected.

“There are more things on the network than we know about,” Odell said.

To secure data at the endpoint, Dell provides a containerized approach with its Workspace solution, noted Roger Bjork, marketing director for mobility solutions at Dell Software Group.

“Securing mobile endpoints is an absolute critical aspect of any strategic planning going forward,” Bjork said.


Brian T. Horowitz

Brian T. Horowitz

Brian T. Horowitz has been a technology journalist since 1996 and has written for numerous publications, including Computer Shopper, CruxialCIO, eWEEK, Fast Company, FOXNews.com, Men’s Fitness, NYSE magazine, ScientificAmerican.com and USA Weekend. He holds a B.A. from Hofstra University and is based in New York.

Latest Posts:


Tags: Uncategorized