Today’s businesses want IT to have fewer moving parts—while still offering the same or expanded resources to users. This demand has resulted in a shift:
- Away from a one-to-one relationship between physical servers and storage
- Towards a many-to-one relationship between virtual machines and a single-storage controller
One major complication with virtualizing workloads, though, is that it increases storage capacity requirements, often resulting in an enormous volume of redundant data. This results in wasted time, wasted effort, and wasted work hours.
Fortunately, converged infrastructure (CI) solves these problems. By combining workloads, you streamline processes and make your business perform better.
As CI evolves, hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is the natural next step. HCI is growing in popularity, with an estimated increase in CAGR at 22% from 2019-2023. Professionals in IT often see HCI as the best chance for organizations to becoming more like the cloud—that is, delivering IT as a service.
So, how do you know if converged and hyperconverged infrastructures are right for you? In this article, we’ll look at:
- Non-converged architecture
- Converged infrastructure
- Benefits of CI
- CI vs HCI
- Benefits of HCI
- When to use
- How to implement
- Additional resources
Brief summary: CI vs HCI
Short on time? Here’s a quick definition of the key terms:
- Converged Infrastructure (CI) is a hardware-based approach to converging storage and processes that reduces compatibility issues, complex deployments, and overall costs. It works by using building blocks.
- Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) is a software-based approach to converging storage and processes. This usually means deployment on commodity components. Importantly, the term ‘hyperconverged’ here does not imply that this technology is superior to regular converged infrastructures.
Converged infrastructures reduce the need for large, physical setups, allowing you to converge and optimize multiple systems at once. (Source)
How non-converged architecture works
Before we dive deeper, let’s look at a non-converged architecture.
In a non-converged architecture, physical servers operate a virtualization hypervisor that manages each of the virtual machines (VMs) that have been created on the server. For data storage, there are typically three options:
- A storage-area network (SAN)
- Direct-attached storage (DAS)
- Network-attached storage (NAS)
With converged architecture, storage is attached directly to the physical server. Regular converged architecture can be just as fast (if not faster) than hyperconverged alternatives. In this setup, flash storage is almost always used. (The need for expensive SAN and NAS, in particular, is eliminated.)
Hyperconverged infrastructure has a storage controller function that runs as a service on every node in the cluster, which is why this is classified as software-defined storage. Most commonly, important data that you need to access quickly is kept local (hot storage) while less crucial data is stored on the actual servers (warm or cold storage).
(Learn more about software-defined data centers, or SDDCs.)
Now, let’s look at CI and HCI in more detail.
What is converged infrastructure (CI)?
Converged infrastructure is an approach to data center management that aims to minimize compatibility issues between storage systems, servers, and network devices. A secondary aim of CI is to reduce costs that are associated with physical components including everything from floor space and cooling to power and cabling.
CI combines storage and compute into a single physical appliance that is small, dynamic, and powerful. This approach brings many benefits:
- Lower deployment costs
- Simplified management
- Reduced maintenance and support costs
For a clearer understanding of CI, let’s see how the differences in converged storage and unified architecture play out in converged infrastructure.
Traditional storage typically involves:
- A controller
- A rack of shelves with SSD or HDD arrays
Converged storage consolidates these components into a node-based storage platform that offers exceptional redundancy. Everything is included in a single box, and you can scale simply by adding more nodes when needed.
Converged storage solutions are available in a wide range of sizes, and they may be all flash or hybrid arrays.
This option makes sense for any organization that already has a network and compute platform but intends to deploy different types of storage for sets or virtual machines.
Rather than adding a new shelf, as in traditional storage, you offload the workload to a converged storage system. This ensures that there is a viable data storage solution for the foreseeable future. There are many advantages to this solution, including:
- Better integration
- Easier management
- Lower costs
In a typical unified architecture, the compute, network, and storage components remain separate. However, a fabric backplane directly connects them, which cuts down on bandwidth contention.
The use of nodes is clear in Nutanix’s Acropolis hypervisor. (Source)
This option makes sense for organizations that deploy data center platforms that use the same vendor across multiple hardware technologies. It also enhances security considerably.
Unified architecture tends to be fairly pricey, which can be a stumbling block for organizations wanting to gain the benefits of a converged infrastructure.
Now we can see how CI combines compute and storage into a single physical appliance. Storage management in CI systems is processed as an application. This results in a converged, unified platform.
Networking is important to an extent, and it’s typically accomplished via the hypervisor, which means that no actual pieces of networking hardware are needed. Unlike virtual architecture, CI is almost always made up of just storage and compute.
This approach means you can integrate abstract services and hypervisor technologies with underlying physical architecture. There are many advantages to this approach:
- Save time on deployment
- Reduce deployment costs
- Simplify overall management through the unification of data center controls
Converged infrastructure benefits
When the top advantages of CI are considered, it is easy to see why so many organizations are adopting this technology. A few of the most compelling benefits of CI include:
- Plug & play solution. CI is basically a plug-and-play solution. It is made up of standalone components that can be decoupled from the infrastructure and used separately. Individual blocks can be snapped together. Doing things this way is almost always cheaper than the a la carte route.
- Reduced support & maintenance costs. Because CI reduces redundancy so well, maintenance and support costs are dramatically reduced. IT specialists don’t have as many repetitive tasks to perform to keep the system up and running. This saves the organization a lot of money, especially when deploying new parts in the infrastructure.
- Improved agility & efficiency. With CI, IT components are consolidated into a single, optimized platform with centralized management. This improves both agility and efficiency. It also helps to reduce costs due to increased utilization.
- Compatibility issues eliminated. Because everything is supplied by a single vendor or a vendor and its partners, compatibility issues are handily eliminated. This is yet another way CI helps to keep costs in check and streamline the management of data centers.
- Streamlined purchasing, deployment & use. Since all components are housed in a single box, purchasing, deploying, and using CI is incredibly streamlined when compared with traditional, non-converged architectural environments.
- Eliminate silos. CI eliminates silos of technology, processes, and people. Silos are largely why traditional data center management has been convoluted and difficult. CI is a big step towards simplicity and ease of management.
- On-demand growth model. CI allows organizations to design, build, and maintain specific segments of a virtualization stack while supporting an on-demand growth model.
For any business, the ability to quickly and effortlessly build upon data center needs cannot be understated.
CI vs HCI: Converged infrastructure evolves
In the world of data center management, CI was a breakthrough. Still, it is constantly evolving and being improved upon.
The next generation of CI pulls together compute, SAN, and storage functionality into modular appliances that are based on commodity x86 hardware. This hardware can be scaled out by adding additional appliance nodes.
As a single-vendor solution, CI:
- Dramatically reduces acquisition costs
- Streamlines deployment
This brings us to the next generation—hyperconverged infrastructure. HCI offers, by far, the best value for a very simple reason: design, delivery, and support are all handled by a single vendor.
The easiest way to distinguish CI from HCI?
- Converged architecture takes a hardware-focused, building-block approach.
- Hyperconverged architecture is software-defined.
CI approach vs HCI approach. (Source)
CI consists of building blocks. Each of the components in one of these building blocks is discrete and can be used on its own for its intended purpose. In other words, for instance, the server can be separated and used strictly as a server.
With HCI, the technology is software-defined. All of the technology is completely integrated, which means that it cannot be broken down into separate components.
What is hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI)?
Also known as ultra-converged infrastructure, hyperconverged infrastructure is widely regarded as the future of data center design. In this approach, software controls all of the resources that are atop the hypervisor.
This software perspective approach has allowed for new data center concepts. HCI systems can be deployed on any kind of hypervisor or any piece of hardware through:
- Virtual machine translation technologies
You can create your own CI platform by deploying overlying software that allows you to manage compute and storage. As a bonus, if a second location is running a different hypervisor, convergence software is capable of translating virtual machines from one hypervisor to the other—you only need to meet the underlying hardware requirements.
Through APIs, an organization can:
- Integrate further with public cloud components
- Extend your data center beyond private architecture
- Integrate with other hypervisors
From there, you can integrate orchestration and automation controls across platforms to achieve a next-generation cloud and data center model. No wonder HCI is gaining popularity!
Benefits of hyperconverged infrastructure
To understand the technology more fully, let’s look at the many advantages of HCI:
- Lower cost. Reduced operational expenses (and TCO) also reduce or correct interoperability and complexity issues.
- Streamlined productivity. Streamlined acquisition, deployment, support, and management of the solution both reduces costs and increases staff productivity, potentially driving profitability. This streamlining also enables rapid application development, another point towards profit.
- No discrete IT components. Fewer moving parts means that there are fewer opportunities for hardware issues. All IT services and infrastructure are combined below the hypervisor within a single, shared pool of x86 resources.
- Easy scaling. HCI provides a scalable, building-block approach that you can easily expand—just add more units.
- Centralized management. With a single interface, you can centrally manage all virtual environments globally. This cuts down on the amount of work needed to maintain the system, therefore increasing productivity. It also minimizes the risk of over-provisioning and over-purchasing.
- Extreme efficiency. HCI allows for extremely efficient use of resources by saving IOPS, eliminating duplicate services and devices, and offloading intensive processing from x86 processors, ensuring that maximum CPU resources are available at all times.
- Greater mobility. HCI shifts management over to apps and virtual machines, leading to greater mobility.
- No third-party replication and backup. Because of virtual machine level backups and the replication of backup data between sites, HCI eliminates the need for third-party replication and backup software and hardware and third-party backup specialists.
When to use CI & HCI
CI makes sense in many situations but may not be the right option for others. Organizations that are interested in CI should weigh the benefits and costs to gain a clear understanding of what is involved before taking the plunge.
Here’s a few situations where CI could be the ideal fit:
- Deploying new tier-one applications or when virtualizing applications
- Managing remote or branch office (ROBO) infrastructure
- Managing remote disaster recovery sites
- Engaging in data center consolidation, whether within or across data centers
- Implementing virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI)
- Performing data migration within or across sites
- Testing or developing infrastructure
The above list is by no means comprehensive, but it does begin to show the wide range of applications for CI. Importantly, many organizations would benefit even more from HCI.
How to implement CI & HCI
There are a few different ways to implement CI. Here are the most common approaches.
Approach 1: Convergent infrastructure references architecture
With this approach, the vendor supplies the customer with pre-tested recommendations about how to use hardware components in their data center to meet requirements for specific workloads.
Approach 2: IT appliance
With this option, the vendor supplies the customer with a single box that includes a tightly integrated combination of storage, compute, virtualization, and networking resources from the vendor and, in some cases, the vendor’s partners. This approach offers horizontal scalability so additional appliances can be added when needed.
Approach 3: Hyperconvergence
In this scenario, the vendor abstracts networking, compute, and storage resources from the physical hardware. Virtualization software is bundled with their CI offerings.
In many instances, the vendor also provides additional functionality for disaster recovery and cloud bursting. This allows the admins to manage the virtual and physical infrastructure in a federated manner via a single pane of glass.
The technologies powering both CI and HCI continue to evolve and improve. Without a doubt, a new or improved generation will be available in the not-too-distant future.
- BMC IT Operations Blog
- What is Software-Defined IT Operations? SDITO Explained
- Server Consolidation: 6 Steps for Addressing Server Sprawl
- Introduction To Web Scale IT
The difference between HCI and CI is that hyperconvergence removes the few remaining downsides of convergence, moving infrastructure into a truly software-defined data center (SDDC), optimizing utilization rates, increasing IT agility, and enabling management from a single console.
The Difference Between Converged and Hyperconverged Infrastructures. The chief difference between converged and hyperconverged infrastructure is that the former relies on hardware and employs building blocks. The latter is software-defined. HCI is more flexible, maneuverable, and scalable than CI.
A cloud environment is directly concerned with the user experience, using advanced automation and orchestration to compose the underlying infrastructure. Hyper-convergence has more to do with simplifying IT, following a rigid node-based architecture that greatly simplifies administration but decreases flexibility.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is a software-defined, unified system that combines all the elements of a traditional data center: storage, compute, networking and management.
Converged infrastructure is a pre-packaged bundle of systems, including servers, storage, networking, and management software. Companies usually purchase these systems from one company, instead of buying the hardware and software components separately from different suppliers.
Organizations need faster and more reliable storage performance than ever before. Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) provides a path to a secure, modern infrastructure. HCI simplifies management, consolidates resources and reduces costs by combining compute, storage and networking into a single system.
Converged architecture is the combination of computing, networking, storage, management software, and automation capabilities into a single, unified solution. Converged infrastructure can simplify and accelerate deployment while reducing risk with validated solutions.
Converged infrastructure and cloud computing
Converged infrastructure can serve as an enabling platform for private and public cloud computing services, including infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and software as a service (SaaS) offerings.
This gives an easy path to resource augmentation and also easier to manage than Traditional Infrastructure. If we need to scale-out, just add more appliances, and you are done. But still, each of the components can be used for its intended purpose.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is a software-defined, unified system that combines all the elements of a traditional data center: storage, compute, networking and management. DOWNLOAD SOLUTION OVERVIEW EXPLORE VMWARE HCI.
“HCI 2.0 is 'Hybrid Cloud Infrastructure,” said Manosiz Bhattacharyya, Nutanix senior vice president of engineering. He said the new generation of hyperconverged infrastructure balances the capabilities of both private and public cloud. HCI has become the foundation for hybrid cloud infrastructure.
A hyperconverged data center is a data center that is built on hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI), which is a software architecture that consolidates the compute, network, and storage commodity hardware.
From ensuring machines continue to operate in safe, secure and user-friendly ways, to allowing users of all abilities to interact with computers, HCI is invaluable in making sure that computers are designed for successful and intuitive human use.
The main advantages of HCI are simplicity, ease of deployment & operations and cost savings – for smaller set-ups. By using HCI you have fewer systems to manage. The hyper-converged clouds reduce the time required to deploy many applications. They also reduce solution design time and integration complexity.
Human computer interaction examples include: Interaction with a mobile app. Browsing a website from your desktop computer. Using internet of things (IoT) devices.
A converged network requires a separate network infrastructure for each type of communication technology. it delivers data, voice, and video over the same network infrastructure. it limits the impact of a failure by minimizing the number of devices affected.
Rather than multiple IT assets existing in independent silos, converged infrastructure bundles hardware components with management software to orchestrate and provision the resources as a single integrated system. The goal of converged infrastructure is to reduce complexity in data center management.
Converged infrastructure is a hardware defined solution designed to overcome the limitations and inefficiencies of the independent silo structure of traditional IT storage and compute.
Benefits of hyper-converged infrastructure include simplified deployments and management, easy upgrades, scalability and flexibility, improved performance, agility and more.
While the actual date and person who first coined the term hyperconvergence can be up for debate, Nutanix was the first technology company to bring to market an HCI-specific product in 2011 called Complete Cluster.
At its simplest, Nutanix Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) is a way to provide the benefits of a cloud model but within your own data centre or computer room. Separate servers, storage networks and storage arrays can be replaced with a single hyperconverged infrastructure solution.
Converged infrastructure (CI) is a form of datacenter management that combines legacy infrastructure components like storage arrays, servers, network switches, and virtualization onto a single SKU that makes purchasing and deployment easier and more predictable.
Overall, the primary benefit of a converged infrastructure is it helps MSPs optimize, centralize, and streamline data center management.
Nutanix Recognized as a Five-Time Leader in HCI
Read why Gartner® recognizes Nutanix as a Leader in the Magic Quadrant™ Hyperconverged Infrastructure Software in 2021.
How does hyperconverged infrastructure deliver continuous innovation? Enables the ability to scale infrastructure on demand, as the business grows. Enables the ability to scale infrastructure on demand , as the business grows .
In the convergent network, different forms of information can be re-engineered to provide better, more flexible service to the user. For example, telephone networks can transmit data and video and cable networks are able to provide voice services.
Network convergence – bringing system and device communication to a single network – simplifies and reduces cabling complexity and overall infrastructure costs, and makes it easier to connect devices directly to the network for data collection and sharing.
Nodes are hardware or virtual resources that are grouped into a cluster to provide block storage and compute capabilities. NetApp HCI and Element software defines various node roles for a cluster. The four types of node roles are management node, storage node, compute node, and NetApp HCI Witness Nodes.
Azure Stack HCI is a new hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) operating system delivered as an Azure service. It provides the latest security, performance, and hybrid capabilities, which now include Azure Arc enablement and new management scenarios through the Azure portal.
The Evolution of Hyperconvergence
Datacenter infrastructure has been designed around SAN Storage since the 90's to protect data and to power critical databases, and became pervasive with the explosion of virtualisation in the early 00's.
HCI (human-computer interaction) is the study of how people interact with computers and to what extent computers are or are not developed for successful interaction with human beings . As its name implies, HCI consists of three parts: the user, the computer itself, and the ways they work together.
Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) has four main components: the user, task, tools / interface, the context. HCI studies requires the evaluation of obtained observations while the user performs certain tasks and habits of the user together.
Norman's Seven Principles
Get the mapping right (User mental model = Conceptual model = Designed model). Convert constrains into advantages (Physical constraints, Cultural constraints, Technological constraints). Design for Error. When all else fails − Standardize.
The user forms the execution and evaluation in a task domain, called the task language. The system responses to the user's action in a different language, called the core language. A major cause of HCI failure is the differences between the two languages.
The Impact of HCI on society:
The impact of HCI on society is mainly improving the ease of use of computers and other devices. Modern computers and other electronic devices do not require the user to have as much training or specialized information as they used to.
Hyper-Converged Infrastructure consolidates software-defined compute, storage, and networking into one cluster to provide high-performance, cost-effective, and easily scalable virtualization. This capability was introduced in Windows Server 2016 with Storage Spaces Direct, Software Defined Networking and Hyper-V.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) evolves the way that compute, storage, and management are delivered and provisioned to help you cut operational and capital costs, increase information technology (IT) and business agility, and improve application performance.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is a combination of servers and storage into a distributed infrastructure platform with intelligent software to create flexible building blocks that replace legacy infrastructure consisting of separate servers, storage networks, and storage arrays.
A hypervisor, also known as a virtual machine monitor or VMM, is software that creates and runs virtual machines (VMs). A hypervisor allows one host computer to support multiple guest VMs by virtually sharing its resources, such as memory and processing.
We take a look at the hyperconverged comparison and how adding "hyper" to convergence allows IT organizations to lower costs and increase performance.
What is convergence in technology?. When it comes to IT in the enterprise, convergence is personified by today’s multicloud systems that enable IT management from a single interface with lower operational costs, improved performance for every application, better data governance, and no vendor lock-in.. The difference between HCI and CI is that hyperconvergence removes the few remaining downsides of convergence, moving infrastructure into a truly software-defined data center (SDDC), optimizing utilization rates, increasing IT agility, and enabling management from a single console.. BMC informs us that the “converged architecture storage is attached directly to the physical server” whereas HCI “has a storage controller function that runs as a service on every node in the cluster.”. For digital transformation efforts, companies need business analysts and IT generalists more than infrastructure specialists.. Server virtualization and private cloud. Development and testing applications. Migrating specific processing functions to a different node for maintenance is part of built-in functionality that most HCI solution providers offer – processing is simply moved to the optimal resource without disruption.. Nodes can be rapidly added to incorporate new applications and workloads.. All of these capabilities allow the enterprise to maintain a “right-sized” data center all the time.. HCI software can highlight processing surplus and shortages based on actual usage and peak times.
What is the difference between Converged Infrastructure (CI) and Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI)? When is it best to use each one? This article helps you sort out the question of Converged...
Before delving into Converged vs. Hyper-Converged Infrastructure, it makes sense to ask, “Converged as opposed to what?” CI and HCI are alternatives to the traditional approach to IT infrastructure that most of us work with every day.. Rather, they represent different ways of organizing and managing the four basic components of infrastructure: compute, storage, networking and server virtualization.. Typically, architects would devise an infrastructure plan that called for the most suitable solutions for servers, compute, data storage, network and server virtualization for a specific workload.. An overall infrastructure management solution might be placed above everything, with some degree of integration between the management tools for storage, compute and so forth.. Whether through an open source CI reference architecture or a vendor-specific software package, a Converged Infrastructure appliance is a single box system comprising networking, storage, compute and server virtualization.. The user does not have to be aware of whether the data storage is local, direct-attached storage, Network Attached Storage (NAS) or a Storage Area Network (SAN).. For instance, there are a number of virtual storage area networks (vSANs or virtual SANs) available for CI and HCI solutions.. Many CI and HCI solutions offer data storage with inline deduplication and deduplication compression — processes that reduce the overall data footprint and leads to more efficient utilization of data storage hardware and faster data backups.. In contrast, Hyper-Converged Infrastructure is considered a “scale out” approach to infrastructure and storage.. When do you use CI or HCI rather than traditional infrastructure?. To consolidate the data center – In response to appliance and storage sprawl in cramped and costly data centers, infrastructure managers are finding CI and HCI to be an appealing consolidation solution.. With a single, consolidated infrastructure, CI and HCI enable better, or even optimal utilization of resources like data center space, racks, servers and so forth.. To protect data – CI and HCI make possible the centralized management of backup and restore functions.. HCI doesn’t require as much infrastructure specialization as traditional infrastructure or even CI.. Try to automate as much as possible – Converged and Hyper-Converged Infrastructure solutions lend themselves to infrastructure automation due to their centralized management.
Converged Infrastructure is a hardware-focused solution that brings scalability, performance, and cost savings to a business. Read the blog to understand how it can benefit your firm.
To eliminate compatibility issues and streamline management, a converged system unites compute, storage, networking, and software together as a complete package pre-configured to deliver faster time to market as a single centralized data center.. Converging data center infrastructure is a single network that facilitates and secures the deployment of resources.. Converged Infrastructure relieves firms from that deployment risk by delivering managed validated solutions that fasten application deployments with authorized infrastructure platforms.. Moreover, a converged system removes the IT complexity by consolidating servers, networks, and storage to work together.. Moreover, CI systems are much easier to deploy as they come right out of the box- pre-configured and teste. Converged Infrastructure is a centralized deployment of resources, including computing, storage, and networks.. Converged Infrastructure typically results in rapid deployments and requires less IT testing.. Businesses can have simplified deployments with pre-validated configurations that define the deployment speed for new applications.. Pre-racked Configuration: Pre-racked configuration is based on pre-installed compute, storage, and network components connected and cabled in a data center rack.. In this advanced world of technology, data center management is changing.. Hyperconverged Infrastructure, the ultra-converged infra, is the future of data center management that distributes the resources into a flexible platform.. Converged Infrastructure is a single vendor solution that dramatically reduces acquisition costs and streamlines deployment.. Ultimately, HCI is far more flexible and scalable, offering a simplified deployment model.
While converged and hyperconverged infrastructure are leaps above legacy IT, they're entirely different approaches. Learn why.
Converged infrastructure (CI) is a form of datacenter management that combines legacy infrastructure components like storage arrays, servers, network switches, and virtualization onto a single SKU that makes purchasing and deployment easier and more predictable.. Its design reduces hardware incompatibility issues, and its ease of deployment is appealing to organizations that are looking to reduce time and resources spent integrating and deploying datacenter infrastructure.. As a result, businesses can minimize the amount of time they spend designing, deploying, and integrating datacenter infrastructure, but the underlying technology is the same as traditional infrastructure with many of the same problems and challenges.. Like converged infrastructure, many organizations choose hyperconvergence because they hope to see financial benefits.. On the other hand, hyperconverged infrastructure takes a completely different approach: using cloud computing technologies implemented entirely in software to enable clusters of commodity server hardware to reliably and predictably power enterprise software services.
Hyper-Converged vs. Converged Infrastructure will be discussed in this blog. What does it mean when people talk
VCE (a joint venture between EMC, Cisco, and VMware) uses a hardware-focused, building-block approach known as converged infrastructure; Nutanix, VMware, and others employ a software-defined approach to hyper-converged infrastructure.. Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is the logical next stage in evolving converged infrastructure (CI).. CI and HCI differ in that CI uses a rack system, whereas HCI does not.. In contrast to HCI, which comprises 1U or 2U (rack-unit) systems that combine one or more multi-core servers with a local storage array, CI is a massive, rack-scale platform.. The difference between HCI and CI is that HCI makes storage available to all compute nodes and virtual machines (VMs).. To put it another way: Converged infrastructure uses the same essential technologies as conventional infrastructure but in a more manageable packaging.. Instead of utilizing commodity server hardware, hyper-converged infrastructure relies on cloud computing technologies implemented entirely in software to run business software applications with high reliability and predictability.
What's the difference between 'hyperconverged' and 'converged'? Who wins?
Hyperconverged Infrastructure Posted on January 3, 2019 by The Gorilla Guide Team What are the differences between traditional IT infrastructure, Converged Infrastructure (CI), and Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI)?. Vendors may provide some limited support, but that support rarely extends to interactions of their product with the products provided by other vendors, unless vendor partnerships and mutual support agreements exist.. This basic theme reiterated throughout the traditional IT section will be revisited in both the CI and HCI sections: the more one restricts the number of solutions to choose from, the easier that IT is to both support and maintain.. Under the hood, CI often looks very much like traditional IT, often using the same products, from the same vendors, that would be used in a typical traditional IT infrastructure.. The custom management interface included with most CI offerings reduces (but often does not fully eliminate) the need for administrators to use the management interfaces of the individual IT products that make up the CI solution.. As a result, while CI can fit many niches and meet most needs, there are areas where CI is just not going to be the right pick, and either HCI or traditional IT will be called for.. While some vendors offer HCI that can be installed wherever the customer wishes, the majority of the most popular HCI vendors either only sell pre-canned HCI appliances, or have a proscriptive product compatibility list.. With HCI, upgrades are also easier, in large part because the HCI vendor has a much narrower set of potential hardware and software combinations to worry about than either traditional IT or CI.. HCI vendors can test the stack of hardware and software they offer more thoroughly than their competitors, and many HCI vendors are quite proud of how refined they’ve made the support process for customers.. Some flavors of HCI allow administrators to install the HCI software on almost anything, meaning that HCI can in some circumstances be more permissive than traditional IT.. While much of the key differentiation rests in how the various approaches to IT are sourced, purchased and supported, most CI and HCI offerings have a management experience that differs from traditional IT.. The Infrastructure as Code (IaC) movement – i.e., writing code to manage configurations and automate provisioning of infrastructure in addition to deployments – can remove a great deal of the hassle involved in the set-up, upgrading and ongoing administration of traditional IT, but many of those same benefits can also be brought to CI and HCI.. HCI is probably the least expensive, easiest to manage, and least difficult to maintain approach to most IT needs, but there are always going to be niches where either traditional IT or CI are the better fit.. CI vendors will often be able to incorporate technologies that serve workloads at extremes beyond what HCI vendors can support, even if they’re not usually bleeding-edge.. Most organizations will see a benefit from using HCI, even if they do not use HCI for all of their IT needs.
Data centers are changing with time. In recent years, IT architecture has completely changed. Data centers are replacing old practices with new innovative solutions. These new solutions help them in managing their cooling, space, and power. Thus, these new solutions are helping data center operators in saving money. The data center's importance is going to...
Converged Infrastructure is pretty similar to old computing infrastructure.. You can easily increase the memory, storage or computing power of your data center.. Also, you need very few devices to manage your data center.. You need less hardware to manage your data center.. Also, you need fewer resources to manage your data center .. It will also allow you to integrate your cloud with your data center solutions.. Thus, data center operators are looking for new solutions for managing data centers.
IT administrators often examine traditional vs. converged vs. hyper-converged infrastructure capabilities to expand data center processing power. HCI is often touted as being fast and easy to stand up, but some traditional infrastructures are just as easy to deploy.
If the virtualization platform requires customization for your business, you probably want to choose every component .. Whether it's a traditional server build, a converged Infrastructure rack or some hyper-converged infrastructure nodes, there are options to suit your data center virtualization needs.. Here, we'll compare traditional vs. converged vs. hyper-converged infrastructure options.. Converged infrastructure (CI) is a purchasing and maintenance model where a collection of components are purchased as a complete system from one vendor.. Usually, the only option is the size of infrastructure in fixed small, medium and large options.. Upgrades to deployed CI are also the vendor's responsibility; the vendor validates the specific versions of drivers, firmware and hypervisor that work together.. Converged infrastructure usually requires an ongoing involvement of the vendor in keeping the deployed infrastructure operational.. Most HCI platforms only require three physical servers to get started, a far lower price than even the smallest converged infrastructure deployment.. Often the HCI storage is only available within the HCI platform.. This replication can be limited by network bandwidth between servers leading to lower than expected storage performance with large clusters.. If you can't satisfy your requirements with HCI, then think about whether converged infrastructure suits how you operate your infrastructure.
New Hyperconverged Infrastructure
New Hyperconverged Infrastructure. One of the most significant benefits of hyperconverged facilities is the ability to simplify your data center designs.. With HCI, the contained hardware and software are put on a single lifecycle so you’re not dealing with diverse assistance dates from different server, storage and networking service providers.. With HCI, companies can consolidate their systems into a HCI cluster and then scale it as necessary.. Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) Solutions. Even more, not having to present brand-new devices or human capital to the mix during high-demand Hyper Converged Infrastructure – HCI Solutions durations can truly assist enhance operations and keep both OPEX and CAPEX to a minimum.. Converged vs Hyperconverged Infrastructure: The Differences Between CI & HCI – BMC Software Blogs. We can offer both the hardware and hypervisor break-fix services your HCI needs for a number of years after the hardware and firmware has been considered EOSL by the producer.. In truth, we were just recently provided with an opportunity associated to HCI in the form of an end of service life VBlocka converged solution utilizing EMC storage, Cisco UCS blade servers, and a Cisco networking kit.. What Is Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI)?. And while there are lots of benefits to keeping a hybrid facilities with a hyperconverged appliance, without a skilled support partner possessing the competence to deal with all components of your HCI solution, you are setting your virtualized environment up for failure.. Our 724 Enterprise Operations Center (EOC) engineers support all significant enterprise os and virtual platforms, consisting of Microsoft, Linux, and VMware, to supply you with event management, spot management, ferma.biologia.gr and removal for your HCI cluster.. That means we can keep track of and support your whole hyperconverged infrastructure solution, from the hardware to the hypervisorquite similar to how the OEM would however at a fraction of the expense!. Intrigued in finding out more about Park, View Managed Services and how it could benefit your organization’s hyperconverged infrastructure?. Hyperconverged facilities (HCI) combines calculate, virtualization, storage, and networking in a single cluster.
Choosing between a composable or a hyperconverged architecture may not necessarily be an either-or selection. Each application must be considered along with specific user needs. Here's what you need to know to improve results. @Enterprisenxt
Hardware virtualization has expanded from the server to include networking and storage along with computing resources.. Even with the push to virtualize workloads, most organizations still have some number of applications running on a single-instance operating system, also known as a bare-metal system.. And many, if not most, run more than one of those applications on the same hardware.". Hyperconverged relies heavily on virtualization and doesn't typically lend itself to bare-metal applications.. An architecture with a pool of available compute resources and the ability to assign specific workloads is much more conducive to this type of requirement.. Storage requirements in many enterprise deployments have traditionally been met with large and expensive storage area network (SAN) or network-attached storage (NAS).. Hyperconverged systems typically take advantage of DAS on each host in lieu of a separate storage system like a SAN or NAS.. In the top-right quadrant is a list of seven different companies that includes familiar names like Cisco, EMC, HPE, NetApp, Nutanix, Oracle, and HPE's SimpliVity.. When you start to look at the differences between the two approaches taken by Microsoft and VMware, you begin to see where the software comes in.. Microsoft takes a software approach to storage resiliency and redundancy based upon its Storage Spaces and Storage Spaces Direct technologies.. Most of the large server vendors offer some type of blade system in their portfolio of products.. Cisco's UCS and HPE's OneView provide the more traditional user interface for both management and monitoring.. At this point in time, the HPE product provides a more comprehensive tool in OneView with the ability to manage a much wider range of resources.. Choosing between a hyperconverged or composable architecture may not necessarily be an either-or selection.
Converged infrastructure (CI) and hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) are common terms, but open converged infrastructure (OCI) is new. What is it and how is it different from the other architectur…
One challenge with larger cluster sizes is that one node going offline can impact the availability and data integrity of the entire HCI cluster should a drive or entire node fail elsewhere in the cluster.. Because each node also has to carry a portion of the compute and storage load, a second challenge is that most HCI configurations also require nodes to be similar in their configuration, especially for systems that stripe data across the nodes in a RAID-like fashion.. Adding newer, faster nodes to an HCI cluster that stripes data won’t necessarily add performance to the cluster, since the overall cluster performance will be held back by the slower nodes.. Open Converged Infrastructure A new type of virtualized infrastructure, referred to as open converged infrastructure (OCI), is attempting to address the limitations of virtual infrastructure, converged infrastructure, and hyperconverged infrastructure.. An OCI system consists of two main components: one or more compute nodes, and one or more data nodes.. VMs run in the compute node, which performs compression, encryption, erasure coding, and snapshots of all the data prior to writing it to the local flash in the compute node.. Compute nodes are typically sized to handle the entire active working set of VM data (after compression), and the data nodes are sized to hold all data, including historical versions of the active working set (e.g. older snapshots).. In effect, the compute nodes handle all primary workloads and the data node provides efficient secondary storage for persistent data.. As an environment ages, newer nodes can be added to the configuration and the power of those nodes can be immediately realized, since they are not reliant on the compute capabilities of the older, slower nodes.
What is converged infrastructure? Converged infrastructure (CI) is a hardware-focused, building-block approach for minimizing compatibility issues between
Also referred to as converged architecture, converged infrastructure represents the convergence of compute, storage, and networking infrastructure in the data center .. Converged infrastructure systems are ideal for organizations that already have a network and compute platform but intend to deploy different types of storage.. The difference between hyperconverged infrastructures and converged infrastructure is that hyperconverged infrastructure is software-defined with all the technology integrated.. Companies would have to deploy servers and storage every time they required a new application.. Deploying data center infrastructure as a complete system simplifies and accelerates the deployment of resources.. Converged technology acts as a platform for repeatable, modular deployment of data center resources for rapid scale and consistent performance.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution for your business - key benefits & how it works. Reduce your HCI deployment and operational costs with StarWind. Learn more >>>
StarWind HCI Appliance is an example of hardware HCI.. In terms of software HCI, you can check out StarWind Virtual SAN and StarWind SAN&NAS.. HCI deployment and operational costs become significantly lower with less hardware to purchase and maintain.. Hyperconverged storage is an element of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI).. There is usually a software-defined storage (SDS) solution that pools all available underlying storage capacity into a resilient virtualized storage pool for further distribution and allocation.. HCI makes sure all applications can store and process data at the point of inception in a cost-efficient manner.. HCI brings lowered IT infrastructure cost, increased ROI, simplified IT environment operation, and IT infrastructure resiliency.. Unfortunately, this is the main issue with the HCI market: there is no mean price for HCI products.. StarWind HCI, as proven by peer opinion, is the best price-quality HCI option for Enterprise ROBO, SMB & Edge on the market.. Your application works on your OS or container and not directly on hardware or on distributed software associated with HCI.. HCI exists to virtualize and pool hardware resources together for the most optimal use and distribution for your applications.. You can run any application on StarWind HCI.. Our engineers will pre-configure, deploy, and help migrate workload to StarWind HCI absolutely free of cost.
Hyper-converged infrastructure breaks down disparate data center technology silos by combining them into highly scalable modules to easily expand infrastructure resources, as needed. Learn more about the ins and outs of HCI.
Converged and hyper-converged infrastructures are possible through a combination of virtualization technology and unified management.. Hardware deployment.. Software deployment .. Deployment.. This has made organizations have to suddenly deploy additional resources and infrastructure to support the business computing needs of users now working remotely.. HCI is merely one implementation of hardware that can be deployed in a data center.
It’s easy to get software-defined storage (SDS) confused with hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). Both solutions “software-define” the infrastructure and abstract storage from the underlying hardware. They both run on commodity servers and pair well with virtualization. Reporters, analysts, vendors and even seasoned IT professionals talk about them in the same breath. But there are important distinctions […]
It’s easy to get software-defined storage (SDS) confused with hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI).. Hyperconvergence simplifies the data center by collapsing compute, storage and storage networking into a single dynamic tier on standard servers — and integrates compute and storage services for virtual machines (VMs) so new infrastructure can be provisioned on-demand.. Hyperconvergence pools compute, memory and storage together in a single platform and makes storage available natively within the hypervisor, so all you need to do is add capacity as you go.. Software-defined storage (SDS) abstracts the management of physical storage, typically by creating a shared storage pool using industry-standard servers.. Just like traditional storage, SDS resources need to be managed independently of the virtual machine.. In other words, you need to be a storage expert and manage storage.. SDS abstracts storage from the underlying hardware — usually industry-standard servers, though some solutions also pool storage from existing arrays.. Storage management — performance, capacity, and availability services — is done through the SDS interface and compute resources are managed through the hypervisor management interface.. The real cost of SDS is the overhead of managing storage.. You still need one or more storage specialists, and it still takes significant time to provision, manage and optimize the storage.. Provisioning more storage requires minimal effort, cutting OPEX costs by as much as 60 percent compared to traditional storage or even SDS.. Whether you’re refreshing infrastructure for an existing virtual environment or starting a new project, it makes more sense to invest in HCI than either traditional storage or SDS.. Because HCI already abstracts the storage layer completely, it is a natural fit for any container workload running on a virtual infrastructure.. If you’re looking at HCI and SDS, you’re almost certainly trying to minimize storage complexity and cost by replacing traditional storage arrays and increase flexibility.
Hyper-Converged Infrastructure is a software-defined IT infrastructure. Compare features of the top HCI Vendors now.
Hyperconverged infrastructure is an approach to data center architecture that combines storage, compute, and networking resources in one solution.. Hyperconverged infrastructure has the same goal — combining the three data center technologies into one solution — but it uses virtualization to accomplish this instead.. Hyperconverged infrastructure is a virtualization solution for businesses that need to scale their computing resources quickly.. Users can deploy the HCI solution on multiple clouds and on-premises infrastructure.. One of the most popular HCI solutions, Cisco’s HyperFlex hyperconverged platform offers users an option to use only NVMe in its HX220c M5 All NVMe.. Azure Stack HCI runs Windows and Linux virtual machines in either a data center or an edge environment.. Microsoft calls its hybrid-cloud style service simply “Azure hybrid.” The HCI solution also integrates with other Azure programs, like virtual machines, and all of these Azure programs can be managed alongside the Stack.. The best HCI solutions should provide maximum visibility — which workloads don’t have the resources they need, when nodes or clusters fail, how virtual machines are performing.. If you’re looking to really save money, choose an HCI solution that allows users to scale their storage and compute needs separately.
Hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) is a paradigm shift in data center technologies that aims to:
IT Operations Blog Organizations using on-premise infrastructure struggle to optimize data center capacity and performance, especially when traditional virtualization mechanisms lead to unmanageable, complex, and under-optimized resource islands.. With HCI, a private data center can now operate as a scalable, high-performance, reliable , and always available cloud-like infrastructure.. With the traditional converged infrastructure, the underlying elements of the virtualized system are preconfigured, prepackaged, and bundled into a single virtualized system.. The resulting VM-centric operations make the data center more elastic to meet varying business demands, help protect data amid fault-prone infrastructure operations, and ensure high IT service availability.. By applying the principles of virtualization and convergence to discrete elements of the infrastructure individually, not as a prepackaged or bundled product, we create opportunities for new data center concepts.. The processing, networking, storage and other hardware resources are federated and can be provisioned, managed, and configured automatically within a software-defined and virtualized environment.. HCI lets organizations replace monolithic storage and networking environments with consolidated infrastructure resources to make the most of their data center investments.. Organizations can increase system capacity by adding nodes to the existing HCI system without individually applying the configuration, security, and management protocols for every hardware or device.. With software-defined infrastructure operations, policies that govern workload processes aren’t tied to specific underlying infrastructure hardware components.. Unlike converged infrastructure, where storage is tied to the hardware components, the hyperconverged infrastructure may distribute the storage controller functionality across the infrastructure nodes as a software service .. For infrastructure systems operating a distributed data plane, and virtual machines (VMs) or container-based apps running compute, storage, and networking across a cluster of nodes, HCI offers a single and unified management plane.. Unlike traditional converged or standard virtualized infrastructure deployments, you don’t need individual management consoles for different hardware or virtualized resources.. While the nodes continue to operate as individual federated systems, the infrastructure and data management operations are standardized across the aggregated resources and controlled within a single, unified user interface (UI).. Market trends suggest that HCI will continue to attract IT spending as organizations seek the technology solution as a next logical step toward radical improvements in virtualized, converged, and software-driven infrastructure environments.
HCI stands for hyperconverged infrastructure. HCI is made up of virtual networking, administration, and storage and computing components that share resources.
VDI software runs on a virtual machine (VM), which is hosted on a centralized server.. Data centers use HCI capabilities to store, to manage, and to analyze large volumes of data because HCI makes it easy to add storage nodes.. Virtual file, database, and application services can run simultaneously but run separately on one server.. Data centers that use HCI can easily be scaled up or down because new nodes can be quickly added or removed.. HCI benefits include lower deployment, maintenance, operational, and management costs.. HCI allows multiple virtual environments with different operating systems and functionality; in non-virtualized systems, only one operating system can be run at a time and it requires its own server.. HCI systems are easier to manage because all components – computing, networking, and storage – are located in the same place, namely on the host server.. Unlike traditional virtualization solutions, HCI solutions enable the automatic configuration and provisioning of all system components at the same time.. Block-level storage is often used in cloud storage solutions.. SAN is different to HCI in that computing and storage functions are separate.. SAN configurations need additional servers to deliver application functionality as applications do not run on a SAN storage server but require additional servers.. HCI replaces traditional data center structures that have separate storage servers, networks, and arrays.. Software cannot run without hardware.
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What Is Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI)?. With HCI options, does the option have an easy way to run containers?. Best Hyper-Converged (HCI) Solutions for 2022. This requires being able to run containers.. The Star, Wind HCA appliance supplies an incredibly high-performance all-flash option that comes as an entirely preconfigured turnkey hyperconverged option.. With this option, you can have 1 node and 1 disk failure and still keep uptime of your workloads.. What is hyperconvergence?
A hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution is a primary tool for connecting, managing and operating interconnected enterprise systems in a
A hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution is a primary tool for connecting, managing and operating interconnected enterprise systems in a hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI).. The end result is a more flexible, agile and scalable computing framework that makes it simpler to build and manage private cloud , public clouds and hybrid clouds .. An HCI solution should provide support for setting up and configuring a diverse array of storage frameworks, managing them and adapting them as circumstances and conditions change.. Offers strong storage management, backup and data replication capabilities.. Delivers strong manageability, granular controls and a high level of flexibility for HCI within a single pane of glass.. Strong and easy-to-use management capabilities through a single user interface.. The HCI solution is designed to manage complex IT environments that require a high level of extensibility and scalability.. vSAN is an enterprise-class, storage virtualization solution that manages storage on a single software-based platform.. The solutions connects to a broad ecosystem of cloud providers, including AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, Oracle Cloud and Alibaba Cloud.
Hyperconverged Infrastructure Best Practic
The item can scale up to numerous countless VMs on a fully filled cluster (64 nodes) w/ 640 TB of functional storage, 32TB of RAM, and 1280 calculate cores (hybrid node-based cluster), with the all-flash designs supporting substantially more storage.. 2/ Vx, Rail 3.. v, SAN presently does not support storage-only nodes in the sense that all nodes taking part in v, SAN needs to run v, Sphere.. v, SAN does support compute-only nodes, so Vx, Rail could probably launch a supported compute-only option in the future.. In the Vx, Rail 3.. You will have the ability to blend different types of hybrid nodes or different types of all-flash nodes in a single cluster as long as they equal within each 4 node enclosure.. The present Vx, Rail version (Vx, Rail 3) works on v, SAN 6.. There is a significant quantity of both official and non-official paperwork on v, SAN offered for you to take a look at, but in summary, local disks on each Vx, Rail node are aggregated and clustered together through v, SAN software application that runs in the kernel in v, Sphere.. Although I have actually seen a number of consumers buy v, SAN, along with their chosen server vendor to create v, Sphere clusters for little workplaces or specific work, I have actually not seen substantial data centers powered by v, SAN.. Hyperconverged Infrastructure Part 2 – What’s Included. As pointed out above, FTT settings address data resilience within a Vx, Rail cluster.. Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI): Which solution is best?. VMware Log Insight aggregates detailed logs from v, Sphere hosts.