Converged Infrastructure and Server

Converged Infrastructure and Server Trends

Posted on 20. Mar, 2018 by in Cloud, Developement, internet, linux, mobile, Open stack, Programming

Converged Infrastructure and Server Trends

Hyperconverged Infrastructure Promises Faster Provisioning


By Tracy Corbo

In coming years, the settling point between on- and off-premises IT deployments will become more defined as various factors such as cost, performance and manageability determine the best execution venue. For now, cloud migration continues, affecting the decisions of IT managers who must efficiently plan for the future of their internal hardware requirements.

The adoption of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) remains mixed, with slightly stronger adoption among larger organizations. Fans of HCI are lured by the promise of reducing the complexity involved in managing and maintaining physical hardware infrastructure. Opponents are more likely to favor off premises cloud-based approaches.

A February survey of 544 members of the 451 Alliance looks at how the role of servers and converged infrastructure are changing and affecting deployment strategies, budgets and the size of the datacenter footprint.

Report Highlights

  • Servers. On-premises servers face challenges from two sides – virtualization and cloud. As the rate of server virtualization container adoption increases, a larger number of organizations will decrease their overall server footprint for the foreseeable future.
  • Provisioning. In general, organizations are finding success in efforts to decrease the time required to provision internal hardware resources. However, much work remains, particularly in large organizations and industries with complex IT environments, and among organizations still mired in manual-centric IT infrastructure management approaches.
  • Impact of HCI. In organizations where use cases of hyperconverged products are growing, the need for traditional infrastructure is declining and most directly affected by the adoption are x86 servers.

Server Trends

The server market is under pressure from two directions – continued virtualization of existing servers and ongoing application and workload migration to public cloud services.

Larger organizations (43%) are more aggressively seeking to reduce the number of on-premises servers than smaller organizations (23%) are in 2018.

Reasons for Decreases. As the rate of server virtualization container adoption increases, a larger number of organizations will decrease their overall server footprint for the foreseeable future.

Nearly half (48%) of organizations with more than 1,000 employees plan to decrease the number of their on-premises physical servers in 2018 due to increased virtualization and higher VM server density. That number drops to 27% for smaller organizations.

The migration of workloads to public cloud services is the top reason for smaller organizations to decrease the number of physical servers on-premises.

Reasons for Increases. Not all enterprises turn automatically to ‘cloud first’ to serve emerging business requirements. According to respondents whose organizations plan to increase the number of on-premises physical servers’ new IT initiatives/project requirements is the primary driver for adding new servers on-site.

The secondary drivers are workload driven but vary slightly by company size. Where new workloads is the catalyst for larger organizations (29%) – expansion of existing workloads is the driver for smaller organizations (24%).

Budget Trends

Spending will increase only incrementally, but server preservation is intact – for now. Although 23% of organizations will increase their number of on-premises servers, the mean budget change in server budgets in 2018 compared with 2017 is just 2%.

The mean budget change is actually shrinking slightly (-1.5%) for organizations with more than 1,000 employees.

Provisioning Hardware Resources Takes Time

The smaller the organization, the less time it takes to provision internal hardware resources such as servers, storage and networking. While 37% of organizations with fewer than 1,000 employees take an average of hours to provision resources – 34% of organizations with more than 1,000 employees take days.

Staying nimble from an IT perspective is difficult as an organization grows. Not only do technology deployments become innately more complex, but the teams required to manage that technology are increasingly dispersed and – in many cases – siloed.

Automation. The more automated the IT environment, the less average time will be required for provisioning. Of the organizations that favor fully autonomous remediation 22% can provision in minutes compared with only 9% of organizations that use a highly manual approach.

Customers that favor a highly manual IT infrastructure management approach may do so as a result of companywide policy that prevents the adoption of technologies that can boost automation.

Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) Trends

HCI technology is currently in use among a quarter of smaller organizations and nearly a third of larger ones. In terms of smaller organizations, 38% are not using HCI and do not plan to and another 22% are thinking about it, but do not have any current plans.

Impact of HCI. Respondents that are currently using hyperconverged were asked if it has resulted in a decrease in spending on other areas of IT. While HCI is affecting spending across several markets – stand-alone x86 servers are the hardest hit across organizations of all sizes.

There is also a significant impact on spending for external storage systems and standard converged infrastructure, especially for larger organizations.

The Role of HCI. As the capabilities and use cases of hyperconverged products expand, the need for traditional infrastructure declines. While cost is a factor, the real appeal for proponents of HCI is reducing the complexity involved in managing and maintaining physical hardware infrastructure.

“If you have a good estimate of what you’re spending now internally in your data center and you can compare that to the cloud and get a good handle on it, it was very easy for us to show that the hyperconverged infrastructure that we would purchase and put on premise was significantly cheaper than trying to go to a cloud service.”

Financial Services   >2,000 Employees    Senior Management

HCI Inhibitors. Not all organizations are convinced that hyperconverged infrastructure will represent an improvement over what they are currently using for workloads–or for what they plan to use.

Of organizations that do not currently, or do not plan to, use hyperconverged infrastructure, 35% say they are satisfied with their existing infrastructure. This is nearly twice the number of respondents who say they are not adopting hyperconverged infrastructure because they are migrating workloads to public cloud services.

However, many organizations that claim to be satisfied with existing infrastructure already have public cloud workload and data migrations well underway.

Appendix: Definitions


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One Response to “Converged Infrastructure and Server Trends”

  1. FLix

    02. Jun, 2018

    Wow! such a worth reading article you explained about converged infrastructure and server trends in a very good manner. Cheers

    From FlixBin

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