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Effective Converged Architecture and Storage Implementations

By - Source: Toms IT Pro

Today on TIP: Examples of Converged IT in the Real World - A trio of case studies illustrating the converged architecture and storage evolution.

Convergence: An alternative to the legacy infrastructure model.Convergence: An alternative to the legacy infrastructure model.

Today on TIP:  Examples of Converged IT in the Real World - A trio of case studies that illustrate the converged architecture and storage evolution.

Tom's IT Pro has explored converged architectureand converged storage in great detail over the last several months. In today's article on the subject, the latest by senior contributor William Van Winkle, we present a trio of case studies that demonstrate the successful implementation of convergence by three organizations—Hobart Brothers, the University of Utah, and Wasserstrom—in the real world.

"Rather than the legacy infrastructure model, in which compute, storage, and networking resources are all built as discrete silos within the data center, a converged model integrates these three facets into a cohesive whole," writes William. "This makes for higher resource efficiency, higher performance, and easier management—or so the story goes."

Hobart Brothers is a manufacturer of welding filler materials. According to system administrator Gaston Brown, the IT department migrated over a weekend … with no downtime. They migrated volumes from one SAN to the other live thanks to convergence.

"That wouldn’t have been the case with another vendor. We would’ve gone to an offline migration where we would have had to back up the data, then bring it up on the new SAN," he explains. "I actually performed the HP migration remotely from my house.”

The University of Utah is another organization that has actually worked through converged architecture implementations. “Sometimes, nifty stuff—proprietary stuff—looks really good. But every time we’ve gone that way, we’ve run into problems," notes Guy Adams, the assistant director of the systems and networking group at the University of Utah’s Center for High-Performance Computing.

"Then we find out the resources to fix those problems are few and far between. They just let the one guy who knew how to fix it leave the company, and on and on," he adds. "Too often, neat and nifty is hard and risky. When you want bulletproof equipment, you want 10 million people using it.”

Phil Smith, CIO of Restaurant supply company Wasserstrom, says the  key criteria for choosing a convergence solution "comes down to three things: 1) reliance on solid state drives for faster data access, 2) blazing IOPS performance for increasing read/write processes, and 3) an aggressive price and high total value. The end result would provide storage, deduplication, and virtual tape library (VTL) functionality."

Read here to learn more about how these companies turned to convergence to improve their IT infrastructures.

A few additional articles about Convergence on Tom's IT Pro:

Pros and Cons of a , one of the largest data center growth areas.

The field of analytics has taken on new layers of depth and urgency thanks mostly to the need for real-time results.

An examination of converged architecture’s influence on private cloud computing.

Businesses that learn to harness today's inundation of bits, known as "big data," stand to benefit immensely.

Centrally manage disparate and reap the benefits.

The advantages of modular performance-optimized data centers.

An interview with Doug Oathout, HP's expert on convergence.

Why investing in modern storage makes sense when deploying virtualization.

Converged storage evolved out of the unified model and promises great leaps in capabilities.

Converged architectures, the remedy for IT sprawl.

James Alan Miller is Managing Editor of Tom's IT Pro. He is a veteran technology journalist with over seventeen years of experience creating and developing magazine and online content. Founding editor of numerous business and enterprise computing sites at the network, James headed up the After Hours section at PC Magazine, as well as hardware and software sections of various Windows publications.

See here for all Tom's IT Pro articles written by James.