Business Cloud datacentre virtualisation

Joe Baguley of VMware is guest speaker at CTO Lunch

trefor davies with joe baguleyVMware CTO EMEA Joe Baguley was the guest speaker at my monthly CTO Third Thursday lunchtime discussion session yesterday. These are hugely useful debates over lunch on a subject relevant to today’s IT Director. We have a guest speaker and on this occasion it was Joe Baguley, CTO of VMware.

We heard about developments at VMware and the strategic direction in which the company is going. This isn’t good news for everyone. VMware are currently pushing out software defined networks and software defined data centres. The idea is that all the smarts are provided by VMware and all the end user IT Director has to do is provide low end commodity hardware. Not what the likes of Cisco, who are VMware partners, would want to hear.

The lunch lasted from 12.30 until 5pm so we covered a lot if stuff. I’ll leave you with one interesting snippet. Apparently Googler uses laptops for its cloud services. In this way if the power to the datacentre goes down the machine itself provides the UPS via its own battery. Innovative I say. I don’t know any more detail than that but it certainly sounds plausible.

The header is of me and Joe at the Timico Cloud launch earlier in the year. I forgot to take pics yesterday!

PS very personable bloke Joe 🙂

Cloud datacentre Engineer virtualisation

The Timico Virtual Datacentre #cloud #DCrevolution

I’ve had time to recover from the Timico Virtual Datacentre launch in London on Tuesday night. It was a great evening with a fantastic mix of people there from the IT Director community.

After the talks we had an “unconference” panel session where we discussed the issues of the day in the cloud. One of the things that came out of the discussion was the fact that whilst advantage of the Virtual Datacentre is massive scalability that can quickly be turned on, most standard enterprises don’t need these huge bursts of capacity.

What was interesting is the large increase in servers being used over recent years. One attendee said that he had increased server usage in his business fivefold in as many years. That’s 300 up to 1,500. The beauty of the virtual game is that it is easy and cost effective to do this.

So the question then arose “why not use AWS?”. The simple answer is “throat to choke” and service levels. With Amazon there is nobody to call when it goes wrong and no guarantees. Also AWS does not provide connectivity and the “embedding” of the server infrastructure in the connectivity infrastructure brings real performance benefits.

Another point that came out was the advent of the Platform As A Service. The Virtual Datacentre represents Infrastructure As A Service but starts ups these days don’t want to have to maintain infrastructure. They just want functionality. Office 365 and Google Apps are examples. PAAS is increasingly the domain of both very small and very large organisations whilst the mid-market likes to manage its own services and is the ideal candidate for the IAAS play.

The Virtual Datacentre is another key step for Timico in our onward march in the communications world. It is a sign of continued progress and investment and a recognition of the needs of our growing customer base. If you want to know more check out the Timico landing page here. Press release here. Thanks to Joe Baguley of VMware for his usual terrific talk.

datacentre Engineer virtualisation

242GHz processor with 767GB RAM? oh ok

john milner - top timico applications engineer
Here at Timico’s Newark datacentre we have just expanded our main VMware cluster with a couple more Cisco UCS B200 blade servers (see earlier post ). The cluster is now running at a whooping 242Ghz of Compute power with 767.51GB of RAM! Impressive ou quoi?

It’s a bit mind blowing if your experience with buying computers is based on time spent in PC World staring at specifications trying to decide whether to pay the extra few quid for 2GB more RAM and a slightly faster processor.

This is just one of the many virtualisation clusters needed to run an ISP and another step forward in Timico’s P2V campaign – onwards and upwards. In fact it’s onwards and downwards when it comes to things like data storage space colocation rackspace, power and of course cost. On the back of this work we have just been able to cancel two cages in Docklands datacentres which will save us £100k a year. That’s significant. That’s half a million quid over five years – that’s very significant.

Virtualisation is allowing us to better manage and control our systems so we can always provide the best possible performance to the services we offer. If you’re a Timico customer you may have noticed the improved performance on services such as hosted web and email.  This is because these services have been virtualised with the accompanying improvement in performance.

Gimme a shout if you want to chat more about this or to come and see it in action for yourself. Info courtesy of that fine engineer John Milner again :)) (sorry if this is embarrassing John but you are a good guy 🙂 ). Check out the Enterprise Private cloud page at Timico.

Cloud Engineer virtualisation

Think global act local – vmware survey

vmware surveyI’m not an angry person but some things can certainly irritate the heck out of me. Today it is survey forms. It’s not concept of filling in a survey – I don’t mind doing that sometimes, especially if I have a particularly good or bad experience.

I should explain:

I just downloaded VMware  player for my laptop. I got the usual message “this may take several minutes” and for once it did take several minutes – usually the installation is quite quick regardless of the message. Coincidentally a survey from VMware popped up on the screen as I was wondering whether o believe the message and go off and do something else in the meantime.

I started to fill in the survey, it was a simple one, and fortunately for VMware the installation  finished just as I came to the bit about rating the experience. I didn’t really have anything bad to say. They warned me it might take some time and it did.

What annoyed me though was the fact that when it came to selecting my country of residence the name at the top of the list was the good ole United States of Americay. Now hear this VMware. It doesn’t do anything for me having the USA as the first name on the list. It just it just makes me irritated to think that you, an American company think it is more important for your countrymen to have life made easier for them but not anyone else.

Either they need to have every country in alphabetical order or, more cleverly, their survey system could recognize the country in which the survey was being completed and push that one to the top. It isn’t difficult.

If you want to be a global company you need to change your culture accordingly. Simples.