HCI in the container age

  A survey report released by IDC at the end of July 2019 shows that in the first half of 2019, the hyper-converged market achieved a 56.7% growth over the same period last year; the software-defined storage market reached a 52.8% year-on-year growth rate. From the perspective of the hardware market, the market share of hyper-converged system hardware in China’s overall storage market is 17.6%, with a total market value of $ 406 million; software-defined storage hardware accounts for 17.9% of the total storage market, achieving a total market value of $ 394 million . At the same time, the report also predicts that in the next five years, China’s hyper-converged storage system market will reach a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.8%, and the size of the hyper-converged market in 2023 will reach nearly $ 2.56 billion.
  In fact, Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) is getting more and more attention from users and the market. It has a lot to do with the fact that hybrid cloud has become the main mode of enterprise-level cloud computing applications today. The value of first-class users is no longer as simple as “combining computing and storage into the same system platform by running virtualization software (hypervisor) in the data center”. Its greater value is to take advantage of the flexibility and scalability of HCI to achieve unified platform management of the enterprise’s local data center and public cloud, thereby providing the most fundamental foundation for enterprises to meet hybrid cloud applications and increasingly complex business requirements. Architecture support.
  ”Our customers, they are all looking for some strategies to deploy hybrid cloud: bridging on-premise and public cloud deployments.” Lee Caswell, Vice President of Product Marketing, VMware Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Business Unit, recently in Beijing In an interview with reporters, he said that with the trend of cloud-native applications brought about by containerization, the speed and flexibility of containerized application development have put forward new requirements for storage management; at the same time, containers are often deployed in In the public cloud environment, the complexity has also increased. “At present, only VMware can cross the hybrid cloud, providing a unified operating mode for containerized applications and applications running on traditional virtual machines, while also bridging traditional storage and new vSAN storage.”
  Lee Caswell emphasized that VMware expects that 500 million new applications will be developed through cloud-native tools in the next five years. These applications add up to more than the total number of applications built over the past 40 years. “A lot of customers ask us, in a containerized application development environment, is there any place for VMware? Although in fact, 80% of containers today run in virtual machines.”
  However, because of this, With the rise of cloud-native applications, enterprise users have to understand: Under what circumstances can these applications run better? “So they want a unified, common operating model that can cross the hybrid cloud and include traditional applications and cloud-native applications developed with new tools.” Lee Caswell said.
  Anyone familiar with VMware knows that under the framework of the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) strategy, the composition of VMware hyper-converged architecture is mainly storage virtualization software vSAN, computing virtualization software vSphere, and expands to the full stack on this basis Network virtualization software NSX, as well as related management software and platforms SDDC Manager, VMware Cloud Foundation … covering software definition and management capabilities in computing, management, networking and storage.
  In response to the containerization trend, earlier this year, at VMworld 2019, Pat Gelsinger announced the launch of a new product and service portfolio VMware Tanzu, including: Project Pacific Pacific Project and VMware Tanzu Mission Control.
  ”This is very important to us, just like the shocking nature of cloud computing and JAVA in the past, it is a great opportunity: to enable VMware to have a more visionary strategy in the field of multi-management.” Pat at the time Gelsinger spares no effort to express Tanzu’s importance: “VMware Tanzu, Project Pacific and Tanzu Mission Control can provide users with a complete environment to help users integrate development and operations, which is what makes us unique. ”
  Lee Caswell believes that just as VMware began to expand to the public cloud in the past, in order to use local systems to manage the public cloud operation model, the value of VMware Tanzu is to extend VMware’s HCI infrastructure to a cloud-native step. So that container development management can also be consistent with traditional virtual machine development management.
  ”There is always such a gap between the developer and the builders and operators of the infrastructure. When the storage is separated, the gap is even greater, that is, storage configuration, management, and enterprise application development. There is a huge distance between the two. Now we have found a way to make the development speed of containerized applications match the agility of the infrastructure provided by vSAN. “Lee Caswell said.
  In fact, Tanzu can be understood as a new tool layer that supports both vSAN and VCF and traditional storage. Therefore, it is a common and unified management layer tool that spans HCI systems and traditional storage systems. Approach provides users with a cross-cloud, standardized management.
  ”Project Pacific actually provides an architecture similar to the infrastructure provided by vSAN, so it can be integrated at the Hypervisor level, and provides fine-grained control, management, and deployment of containers, which is similar to the control and management of virtual machines. It’s the same as pre-configuration. “Lee Caswell said,” Tanzu is therefore a unified management layer that spans the hyper-converged architecture and traditional storage. In a hybrid cloud environment, containers and virtual machines run side by side, with a highly consistent operating model while minimizing costs. ”

  Increasingly clear real business needs of enterprises, increasingly complex infrastructures, increasingly wide-ranging data sources, more and more solutions and emerging technologies have made the entire IT industry “crowded” .
  From a technical point of view, as emerging IT technologies are widely and deeply applied, the demand from user terminals is continuously promoting the progress of the technology itself. Therefore, whether it is hybrid cloud, container, cloud native, or HCI, it is actually showing a high-speed transformation from technology to applications and IT to business scenarios. In this process, how system providers can efficiently and sensitively respond to market and user needs has become the key to the sustainable development of emerging technologies and to truly improve the business logic of enterprise users-because IT can meet the actual business needs of enterprises Technology, applications and logic are never unique.
  From virtualization to cross-cloud solutions, from software-defined data centers to hyper-converged solutions, VMware actually covers the architecture and fields of data centers, public clouds, and cloud natives. “VMware is actually opening up as much freedom as possible for customers, especially those that are most important to customers: For example, vSAN, of course, our ideal deployment method is that customers use full-stack vSAN plus VCF, but they also VCF can be deployed on other storage. ”In answering the author ’s question, Lee Caswell emphasized that some of the degrees of freedom that enterprise users care most about, including the choice of different clouds, and the choice of different servers and different applications, VMware will Through vSphere, it provides maximum flexibility from VCF and other perspectives.
  ”Hyperconverged architecture originated outside the data center, but now it has gradually entered the enterprise. It needs to be very resilient. VMware can provide this flexibility and the reliability of the infrastructure,” said Lee Caswell.