Tag Archives: HC3

Ending the insanity with “The Pencil”

Awhile back, I was asked to have a discussion with someone that was looking into virtualization and SAN storage to build out a traditional virtual environment. The customer – an Equallogic fan – had already settled on a VMWare and Equallogic solution, but was still willing to talk. He had sent us the following excerpt from an email:

“I will be looking feature-wise at snapshot features and integration with Windows and VMWare. I’m sure Jack filled you in so there isn’t a need to belabor the point but I was extremely impressed with features from other vendors and honestly disappointed by the snapshot features on the Scale platform. But I will happily give you another chance to show me something I may have missed.”

This customer’s take was based on demonstrations from Lefthand and his own experience on his Equallogic gear that showed him outstanding integration with Windows and VSS for snapshots as well as tight ESX storage API integration – creating snaps that are application-aware and consistent, creating and managing iSCSI LUNs through vSphere, these sorts of things. He had already mentally accepted that the complexity of such a solution was a foregone conclusion and a necessary evil to realize the benefits of virtualization.

It was time to show him that there is a better way …. Continue reading

The Birth of Your Cluster: Scale Installations

*Guest blogger and Scale employee, Morgan Myers.

There are a few moments in life when you look at the world around you and truly feel connected. That moment when you hold a newborn in your arms and marvel at the complexities and joys of a new being, all of the infinitesimal parts that had to have come together to make the perfect whole, like a well-oiled, natural machine, is one of those moments. At Scale Computing, we want that moment for you when you look at your new HC3™ cluster. We want you to step back with awe and hope for the future, because that is what we believe our software holds for small-to-midsize businesses. Continue reading

Under The Hood: HC³ In Action – Cluster Formation

Previous posts in this series have discussed the ease of use and high availability design goals of the HC³ platform, as well as the hardware and high level software architecture. Now, lets roll up our sleeves and walk through how ICOS (Intelligent Clustered Operating System) takes a set of independent compute nodes with independent storage devices and aggregates them into a single pool of compute and storage resources that are managed as a single, redundant, highly available system.

Once the Scale HC³ cluster nodes are racked and cabled and configured with physical network connectivity, the cluster formation process takes multiple nodes (currently 3 or more) and logically bonds them together to act as a single coordinated system in a process that completes in a matter of minutes. Continue reading

Is VMware Headed for the Le Brea Tar Pits?

I recently received an inbound call from a value-added reseller looking for virtualization solutions for his SMB customers. The conversation began as they normally do: he heard something bout Scale Computing and our technology, but really didn’t understand what we were doing. He said—and I quote:

“It looks like you’ve virtualized all the core functions in the rack: servers, storage, networking. But that’s not really possible. So what is it you do?”

With a smile on my face that he couldn’t see, I simply replied “yes.” Continue reading

VIDEO: The Twelve Networking Truths – RFC 1925 Truth No. 5

RFC 1925 Truth No. 5: “It is always possible to aglutenate multiple separate problems into a single complex interdependent solution. In most cases this is a bad idea.”

So to paraphrase truth No. 5, complexity is a bad thing.  However, this is exactly how virtualized infrastructures are built today. Continue reading

Under the Hood – HC3 Architectural Design Goals

The first two posts of this series discussed the high availability and ease of use requirements that went into the design of HC3.  With those overarching user needs as a backdrop, we will now transition into a more technical look under the hood at the hardware and software aspects of the HC3 system.

HC3 and the ICOS (Intelligent Clustered Operating System) that it runs on were designed to put intelligence and automation into the software layer allowing the system to provide advanced functionality, flexibility and scalability using low cost hardware components, including the virtualization capabilities built into modern CPU architectures.  Rather than “scaling up” with larger, more expensive hardware that also requires equally expensive idle “standby capacity” to operate in the event of a failure, HC3 was designed to aggregate compute and storage resources from multiple systems into a single logical system with redundancy and availability designed in. Continue reading

Vendor Programs: Do Resellers Really Give a Damn Anymore?

In my last post, we talked about the difference between evangelists and missionaries, and how the more innovative your product or solution, the more you need missionaries. The idea here is that missionaries do their job not for glory or riches, or even notoriety, but for the belief in the value of the mission itself to those being “converted.” As I said before, the missionary is fearless – he burns with “missionary zeal”. To bring something to market that potential customers (the unconverted) don’t even know can help them, takes that kind of fearlessness – and not just from the sales team, but from everyone in the company. In Startupland, everyone is in sales, every day.

One major challenge young companies have is how to get your channel partners to buy-in to the mission. After all, your resellers are going to represent you to the customer and if they don’t believe, you may never even have a chance to convert that prospect. Continue reading

KVM or VMware: Why KVM is Right for the Times (Part 2 of 2)

The Holy Grail of IT, especially SMB IT, is to have a datacenter that’s simple and easy to use. Preferably, as easy as an iPhone or Android phone with enterprise software that is as easy to access and run as Angry Birds is from an app store.

Thanks to KVM and Scale Computing, that vision is possible. And, well on its way.

This blog continues where Part 1 left off and describes how KVM is implemented within Scale’s HC3.

Strategic for the Customer and Scale Computing

Both commercial developers and consumers need to worry about the EMC trap. The company owns VMware and is well-known in the industry for its aggressive business moves. VMware storage partners who are developing converged solutions based on VMware are tying their company’s future to their competition. It’s quite probable that EMC could create a hyperconverged version of VMware that only runs on EMC storage gear. All other vendors could be locked out, severely limiting choices for vendors, resellers and especially users. Continue reading

KVM or VMware: Why KVM is Right for the Times (Part 1 of 2)

 

The Holy Grail of IT, especially SMB IT, is to have a datacenter that’s simple and easy to use. Preferably, as easy as an iPhone or an Android with enterprise software just as easy to get and run as Angry Birds is from an app store.

Thanks to KVM and Scale Computing, that vision is possible. And, well on its way.

In August 2012, Scale Computing launched the first and only hyperconverged infrastructure based on KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine) into the marketplace. Called HC3, the multi-award winning solution integrates servers, storage and networking into a clustered appliance with a single operating system called ICOS® (Intelligent Clustered Operating System). Continue reading

Evangelist or Missionary: Which one are you?

In my last blog post, I mused on why we don’t drink bourbon in the office anymore – like JR Ewing of Dallas used to – and why his habits and business dealings made him such a compelling (if sometimes evil) character, and even a guide for certain positive business behaviors.

Today, I want to talk about Technical Evangelists and Missionaries. “Technical Evangelist” is a role aspired to by a lot of people in Startupland, or in the IT industry at large. Guy Kawasaki from Apple made this into a glamor position in the industry a few years ago. After all, it’s fun to get out there and talk about the cool new stuff we are creating in this tech world and how customers should want to hear about it –  and, of course, how great and smart we all are.

Really, what does the Evangelist (any kind, technical or religious) actually do? The Evangelist says he is going to speak on a subject and people will go to where he will be, because they want to hear what he has to say. They may agree with him, they may disagree with him. They may love him or hate him, or what he says and stands for. They may give him their money, or snap the TV off. (Check out any number of religious televangelists and see if you don’t agree.) But the point is, people will go and listen to the Evangelist because they are interested in hearing what he has to say, period. Continue reading