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“Enterprises are realising the importance of data centre efficiency”

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In a conversation with Heena Jhingan, S Sridhar, Director & General Manager – Enterprise Solutions Group, Dell India, explains how the company’s new integrated IT solution smoothens convergence in data centres. Excerpts

Convergence has been on top of CIOsminds for a while now. What does PowerEdge VRTX 1.3 bring to the users?
PowerEdge VRTX 1.3 is an integrated IT solution born out of efforts by the research and development team at Dell, to meet the requirements of customers who wish for a scalable, flexible and customisable product for varying workloads. We believe, VRTX 1.3 is the first of its kind converged infrastructure solution, which integrates servers, storage, networking and the management within a compact single chassis for streamlined deployment to remote, branch, and any environment where the requirement is for a scalable all-in-one enterprise solution.

Building on the performance and ease-of-use features from the VRTX hardware platform, which was released last year, we have developed VRTX further and now offer an optional fully redundant storage controller for a highly available solution. In addition, VRTX server node choices now include the enterprise class 4-socket PowerEdge M820. VRTX management systems share a common design with the Dell’s Chassis Management Controller (CMC), providing VRTX users with a familiar management experience across local and remote VRTX deployments alongside CMC data centre systems. VRTX now also supports graphical processing units (GPUs) to accelerate the virtual desktop performance. These new enhancements make convergence simpler, resulting in lesser headaches for the CIOs.

Lastly, but most important of all, the VRTX is designed with the environment in mind, to work within the office acoustics and environmental conditions, without the need for data centre class cooling and power. VRTX brings a converged data centre to the customer at a fraction of the ‘net impact’ both on infrastructure cost and operational efficiency.
What are some of the trends that we can see in the new-age data centres in terms of infrastructure and architecture?
The amount of data generated in India is enormous, owing to the large population and the move towards digitisation of most of the operations in India. Businesses are realising that their operational efficiency is dependent on the effectiveness of their data centres. Hence, the demand for data centres in India is high. According to a study by Nasscom, India’s data centre market was at about US $2.2 billion in 2012. It is estimated to grow by more than 8% over the next three to four years. Enterprises are realising the importance of data centre efficiency over capacity. Companies understand that more than having data centres with large capacity, it is important to have data centres that are efficient, optimise costs, save power and enable automation of processes.

With remote monitoring and management of data centres, IT administrators are able to address problems very quickly. To reduce operational costs and increase IT efficiency in the long term, organisations are implementing many technology approaches such as virtualisation, storage management, etc., which require a different approach to data centre operations.

In terms of infrastructure and architecture of data centre, consolidation has become very important. For most enterprises, their business depends upon a well-functioning data centre and they prefer to reduce the complexity that comes with fragmented facilities in a data centre. Data consolidation helps overcome these complexities and improves operations. A trend around increasing powerful and scalable compute is also visible. The scale of data centre deployments is increasing with the adoption of powerful multi-core processor servers, blade servers and interfaces with higher bandwidth. These large scale solutions lead to increase in network performance.

Today, the data centres are being reshaped by the new application architectures and service delivery models. This enables new bandwidth traffic flow within the data centre and demands high performance from servers. Also, enterprises are increasingly turning to the cloud to improve business agility, reduce expenses, and accelerate business innovation.

How have customers responded to PowerEdge VRTX in India?
It has been well-received by our customers across the verticals. They have used the VRTX offering for a variety of ways from SMBs using it as an alternative for building an expensive data centre, to a large corporation using it as a compute and storage building block for a comprehensive surveillance solution. The new enhancements are designed to further simplify and increase the efficiency of VRTX . Hence, we are positive about the value of  the offering.

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