The Software-Defined Data Center Era is Here

The software-defined data center era is here.

Companies are steadily moving from legacy data centers, deploying and adopting the software-defined data center stack and transforming their data centers into highly agile IT delivery systems, which allows for increased automation and flexibility.

As technology analyst Gartner says, “the future of the datacenter is software defined.” Yet while a software defined data center, once deployed, is turnkey, the path to get there is anything but. To manage the complexity and re-architecture, enterprises are turning to managed service providers to deploy SDDC architectures.

But what is a software-defined data center, and how did we get here?

A software-defined data center allows all infrastructure to be delivered as-a-service, which increases flexibility by building more automation. This is important to not only address growing pains for an enterprise but also lets the business be more agile in making technology decisions.

The software defined data center era started with virtualization, or virtualizing workloads and maximizing hardware utilization. It then moved into converged infrastructure, or highly integrated solutions built in a rack that could be instantly provisioned and consumed.

Now, hyper-converged infrastructure has led to the software defined datacenter stack, which can run on any compatible enterprise grade hardware.

More companies are realizing that the software-defined datacenter is crucial to the long-term strategic vision and evolution of a digital business, because datacenter space is limited and scaling of infrastructure to keep up with the business demands is critical.

Because of these benefits, many virtualization platform vendors are providing software defined datacenter architectures by offering hyper-converged stacks, or by providing a complete software stack built on standard hardware.

VMware, for instance, provides NSX for its software-defined networking, vSAN for its software-defined storage and vRealize automation to enable end-to-end life cycle automation and management. All of these allow any server to be SDDC ready, meaning a customer can now bring in these three powerful tools and deploy an SDDC in a box and scale infinitely.

software defined data center, VMware

Gartner predicts that by 2020, the software-defined datacenter will become standard in at least 75 percent of global datacenters. With the fast adoption of the DevOps model, and a readily available SDDC API, the pace to on-demand hybrid clouds has risen significantly — and this has only increased the need for managed SDDC services.

For many years, the networking industry was slow to innovate. Software-defined data centers didn’t begin to take off until the emergence of software defined networking software, which allowed for rapid deployment of software-driven networks and eliminating any network related bottlenecks.

For instance, VMware’s NSX and NFV software have matured enough for enterprises to truly rely on these as their primary backend networking backbone. But most companies don’t possess the in-house talent or resources to adopt and manage an SDDC on their own.

For companies seeking rapid adoption of SDDC architectures, it is imperative to choose a strong partner with many years of SDDC experience to assist in the transition. With VMware’s technologies, SDDC deployment may be easy, but adopting new methods of management, scale, interaction and chargeback can be overwhelming.

Recently, Rackspace launched the SDDC platform on VMware, which combines NSX, vSAN and vRA on enterprise grade hardware, allowing customers to scale into Rackspace seamlessly. Enterprises migrating out of their datacenters using a managed provider like Rackspace Private Cloud powered by VMware are finding it a very compelling option for their growth and scale.

Learn how Rackspace implements the VMware SDDC

Rackspace offers a complete suite of product and support offerings — unheard of in the industry. For example, other managed providers lack complete VMware support along with Guest OS and Application support (for certain applications). Rackspace also customizes your environment to a greater extent, so the transition is largely seamless, with little or no changes to the end user experience.

And it’s all backed by Rackspace Fanatical Support, making SDDC adoption easier, safer and more secure than ever. Learn more about the SDDC and Rackspace Private Cloud powered by VMware. You can scroll down to request a free quote, or have a Rackspace specialist contact you.

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Ranjit “RJ” Singh is a VMware vExpert, working as a VMware Cloud Solutions Architect specializing in architecting Enterprise cloud solutions. He worked for Rackspace, home of Fanatical Support. RJ holds a Master’s degree in Information Technology-Infrastructure Assurance and an Engineering degree in Computer Science and brought more than ten years of hands-on IT experience to his job. He has presented at numerous VMUG UserCon conferences, Including Boston, Washington DC, New York, Denver and Dallas. He also runs a technology blog, and can be found on Twitter @rjapproves. RJ is also interested in astrophysics, animal welfare and open source projects. One of his favorite quote is from Mahatma Gandhi: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”


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