Dell to go Partner route for public cloud

May 20, 2013

As you may be aware Dell has been offering and hosting a public, multi-tentant IaaS cloud offering.  After getting that business off the ground and many customer conversations,  we’ve come to realize that the greatest way we can provide value for our customers is to focus our investments on more strategic components of the cloud and provide our customers with maximum choice and flexibility.

As a result, rather than building out and supporting our own multi-tenant public cloud, we will partner with companies in order to provide customers access to the cloud(s) of their choice.

Enter Enstratius

A sampling of some of the public clouds Enstratius provides access to.

A sampling of some of the public clouds Enstratius provides access to.

With our recent acquisition of Enstratius not only are we are able to provide our customers with the ability to manage and govern a multi-cloud environment but we are now able to offer access to over 20 prominent clouds from Amazon to Rackspace, to Google, to AT&T.

A new Partner Program

Beyond the partners that Enstratius provides access to, today we are also kicking off today a partner program to provide access to IaaS through an ecosystem of options.  The first three partners we are announcing are:  Joyent, Scale Matrix, Zero Lag:

  • Joyent: An IaaS provider for real-time web and mobile applications. Joyent has out-of-the-box compatibility with Enstratius’ multi-cloud management.
  • ScaleMatrix: Cloud hosting platform, Services are offered from proprietary world-class data centers, and leverage enterprise hardware, storage and cutting-edge security and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) mitigation services.
  • ZeroLag: Combines VMware-powered on-demand cloud infrastructure with professional services and custom-designed solutions.

Customers will be able to purchase products from these partners through their Dell sales representatives and you can find out more information at dell.com/cloud-partner-program.

Private Cloud and Project Sputnik

On the Private Cloud front nothing has changed.   We are still huge supporters of OpenStack OpenStack_200.jpg-2f65a9098a7b1dd1and will continue offering our Open Stack-based private clouds.  Additionally  we will continue to provide cloud-to-on-premise connectivity via Boomi.

On the Project Sputnik front the cloud launcher that we continue to work on is being designed to provide access to a host of clouds.

Extra-credit reading

  • Dell to Deliver Public Cloud through Partner Ecosystem – Press Release

Pau for now..


SXSW: Our Saturday night Dev/tech meet up

March 12, 2012

During SXSW Michael Cote and I, on behalf of Dell, organized a series of mini meet-ups focusing on developers, tech and social media folks.  The second event we held was on Saturday on the top level of Speakeasy.  Being Saturday night, this turned out to be the biggest of the three get togethers.

Here is a small sampling of the folks who dropped by (notice the atmospheric lighting, for half of them they were literally lit by candle light):

The Line up

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Architecture Overview: The Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications

February 10, 2011

Last November, Dell announced the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications.   This turnkey offering is composed of Dell systems and Joyent Software along with a reference architecture all supported by Dell services.  This solution enables a private Platform as a Service (PaaS) environment to support the development and testing of languages such as PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby and Java.

This solution is designed for hosters and telcos who are looking to provide public PaaS offerings.  An example of this is Uniserve, a Canadian Internet services provider.  Uniserve has adopted the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications to offer on-demand access to a high-performance Internet application and consumer delivery platform, for customers to develop iPhone apps to commercial storefronts, to hosting and delivering Software-as-a-Service.

Check out the short video above where Dell Data Center Solutions architect Brian Harris  provides a high level overview of the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications architecture.

Some of the areas Brian covers:

  • Purpose build hardware
  • Smart OSs
  • Smart machines
  • Self-service portal
  • Dell Support

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


DCS systems, solutions and MDC steal show at Dell sales kick-off

February 1, 2011

Every year at the end of January Dell holds a giant kick-off meeting for our enterprise and public sales forces.  The event, which has been held in Las Vegas the last two years, is a four-day happening consisting of keynotes, sessions and a full-scale expo where the sales team can touch and learn first-hand about the latest and greatest in Dell solutions and offerings.

Setting up the DCS Modular Data Center on the expo floor

At last year’s sales kick-off, the Data Center Solutions (DCS) group had our big coming out party, letting the sales force know that we would be expanding beyond our elite custom system business, with a specialized PowerEdge C line and a set of cloud solutions.

This year the systems and solutions have been out in the market for a little while and we were able to share actual case studies with the attendees showing how our systems and solutions have been able to solve real customer problems.  The big new addition to the DCS line up was our Modular Data Center (MDC) which, until just a few months ago, was reserved only for a very small group of select customers.

Gearing up for day two of both duty at the DCS booth.

As you can tell from the picture above, the MDC took up a big part of our booth.  It served to house our PowerEdgeC servers and host a selection of our cloud solutions:

Additionally, to provide a peak at what PowerEdge C systems we have up our sleeve, we had several units in an uber secret whisper suite.

Our overall message at the booth was that although these components can be used individually, if you want to run “the world’s most efficient hyperscale data center” you’ll want to combine these optimized solutions and systems with the MDC into one hyper-efficient, integrated system.

Well received

Now as a member of the DCS team I may be a little biased but I really think we had the coolest booth there :)  It was great to hear comments from the sales force such as “this is awesome!” and “why didn’t I know about this?!”

We’ll have to start now to figure how we will top this next year.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Dell brings Joyent to the world

November 19, 2010

Joyent has been a provider of cloud services for the past five years, longer than the term cloud itself has been around.  Today at a press conference in San Francisco, Dell announced the availability of the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications which offers the software from Joyent as a turnkey platform-as-a-service offering.  This private cloud offering is offered on Dell’s specialized cloud servers and is targeted at IT service providers, hosting companies and telcos.

Up and running

One of the first customers to pick up and run with this offering is Uniserve, a Canadian Internet services provider.  Uniserve has adopted the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications to offer on-demand access to a high-performance Internet application and consumer delivery platform, for customers to develop iPhone apps to commercial storefronts, to hosting and delivering Software-as-a-Service.

Thoughts from the top

Joyent CEO, David Young is featured in the short video above addressing the following questions about the Dell/Joyent solution:

  • Why is he excited about today’s announcement
  • Why have they focused on web applications
  • Who are the potential customers of this solution
  • What customer pain points does this solve
  • Why partner with Dell

Pau for now…

Extra-credit reading


Dell Cloud Solutions up and running!

November 19, 2010

Back in March we announced Dell’s cloud solutions.  Today at a press conference in San Francisco we announced their general availability along with some examples of customers who are employing them. (Woohoo!)

What’s the big idea

The idea behind these offerings has been to leverage the experience we in the DCS group have gained over the last several years providing custom systems to some of the world’s largest cloud providers.  These new solutions are targeted at organizations the next tier down (the “next 1,000″) from the hyperscale customers we have been working with.

Who’s using these solutions, a couple of examples

  • Uniserve, a Canadian Internet services provider, has adopted the Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications to offer on-demand access to a high-performance Internet application and consumer delivery platform, for customers to develop iPhone apps to commercial storefronts, to hosting and delivering Software-as-a-Service.
  • InsightExpress, a leading provider of digital marketing research solutions, has deployed the Dell Solution for Data Analytics. The solution combines analytic platform software from Aster Data with Dell PowerEdge C servers with joint service and support, enabling InsightExpress to measure the effectiveness of advertising and brand communications for clients to drive high performing marketing campaigns.

How we got here

We started our expansion by creating a line of specialized PowerEdge C servers patterned after the custom systems we have been designing for the “biggest of the big.”  What we realized though is that, unlike the biggest players who write their own software, the next 1000 don’t just want servers, they want solutions that also include software and services as well.

The three integrated solutions that are available today are:

  • Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications: A turnkey platform-as-a-service offering targeted at IT service providers, hosting companies and telcos.  This private cloud offering combines Dell’s specialized cloud servers with fully integrated software from Joyent.
  • Dell Cloud Solution for Data Analytics: A combination of Dell’s PowerEdge C servers with Aster Data’s nCluster, a massively parallel processing database with an integrated analytics engine.
  • Dell Cloud Solution for Data Warehousing: PowerEdge C servers and Greenplum Database 4.0 for building enterprise data warehouses and consolidating data marts in massively parallel processing environments.

Stay tuned for more news and more solutions!

Pau for now…

Extra-credit reading:


Dell’s hyper scale cloud efforts — Everything you wanted to know in 3 minutes

October 14, 2010

Last week a couple of us went down to San Antonio to help represent the OpenStack project at Rackspace’s partner summit.  While there I met up with the VAR Guy.   Mr. Guy got me chatting about Dell’s Data Center Solutions group, where we’ve been and where we’re going.  Below is the resulting video he put together featuring myself and San Antonio’s greenery. (See the original article this came from).

Some of topics I tackle:

  • How Dell’s Data Center Solutions Group is designing servers for high-end cloud computing
  • How Dell is integrating hardware with software in cloud servers
  • Coming soon: Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications/Leveraging Joyent‘s software
  • Dell’s cloud partner program – where Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud, Aster Data and Greenplum fit in.
  • Dell’s commitment to OpenStack

Extra-credit reading:

Pau for now…


The Dell / Azure Cloud & Appliance

July 12, 2010

Several months ago in the press release that announced our Cloud Solution offerings, there was a particularly cloudy paragraph that talked about Dell’s relationship with Microsoft.  The paragraph ended with the sentence: “Dell and Microsoft will collaborate on the Windows Azure platform, with Dell and Microsoft offering services, and Microsoft continuing to invest in Dell hardware for Windows Azure infrastructure.”  What the heck did that mean?  Well today we can be a bit clearer.

Dell Cloud based on Windows Azure

Earlier this morning at Microsoft’s Worldwide partner conference, the giant of Redmond announced the limited production release of the Windows Azure technology for a select few tech giants.  Dell is one of these and will be taking this technology and creating ourselves a Platform as a service (PaaS) cloud.  We will in turn use this cloud to deliver both public and private cloud services to customers looking to develop and deliver next generation cloud services based on .Net.   This platform will be targeted at enterprise, public, small and medium-sized business customers as well as be used by Dell itself.

But wait, there’s more: Azure in a box

Dell and Microsoft are also working on a Dell-powered Windows Azure platform appliance.  (Don’t let the term “appliance” throw you, you can’t register for this and it really represents 100s or 1000s of servers plus storage and networking).  Dell will be making this turnkey cloud platform available to enterprises to enable them to set up their own PaaS clouds within their organizations.  Dell has a bit of a leg up here since we’ve been working with Microsoft on Azure as the primary infrastructure partner since its launch back in ’08.  We’re simply packaging this “winning combination” and providing it in a turnkey package for internal use by enterprises.

A little context: adding to our cloud portfolio

So how does this fit in with some of the other cloud solutions that we have announced?  At a high-level, Dell is providing cloud solutions to help customers take either an evolutionary approach that makes their existing applications more efficient or a revolutionary approach with new applications written for cloud scale (we actually believe customers will do both).

We have already been working with Microsoft to offer evolutionary cloud services based on Microsoft’s Hyper V platform.  We are now complementing this with a revolutionary Windows Azure appliance.  This turnkey PaaS cloud platform will be in addition to the turnkey PaaS cloud platform that we announced with Joyent.   Whereas the Joyent-based offering, “the Dell cloud solution for web applications” is targeted at folks developing in Java, PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby on Rails etc. the Azure appliance will naturally be targeted at the .Net world.  BTW we also offer solutions based on VMware Redwood/ Spring, EMC Atmos and BMC among others.

Stay tuned for more!

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Talking to Joyent’s CTO and co-founder: Jason Hoffman

June 3, 2010

When I was out in the Bay Area for our launch a while back I stopped by Joyent‘s new headquarters (I actually visited them on their very first day in their new digs). I chatted with CTO Jason Hoffman about his background, what Joyent’s all about and what they are doing with Dell.  Take a listen:

Some of the topics Jason tackles

  • What Joyent does (hint: they provide virtual datacenters)
  • Joyent customers: they range from the top facebook applications, on line media companies, movie, music and tv studios, online retailers…
  • Your next computer is the data center — which needs operating environment, an open API and a good set of developer tools.
  • How Jason got to where he is: via a Doctorate in pathology where he was an end consumer of compute.  He realized that a lot of the efficiencies that they had developed in his field could be applied to a hosting environment.
  • Dell as Joyent’s “private cloud arm:” Joyent software running on Dell’s hardware where Dell can come in and set up the entire environment enabling departments within companies to act as service providers within their organizations.

To put it in perspective…

And since we’re talking about Joyent and Dell and Joyent working together I thought I would include this excerpt from a post that Redmonk analyst Stephen O’Grady recently wrote about the private cloud:

At the present time, however, most of that which we call Platform-as-a-Service – the layer currently serving as middleware – is public cloud only. The PaaS fabrics tend to be proprietary and not available for private consumption. Salesforce.com, for example, doesn’t let you replicate Force.com on your servers. Ditto for Google App Engine. Microsoft Azure features may be trickling back into Windows, but you’re not going to be running Azure in your local datacenter. This is why Dell’s distribution of Joyent’s cloud software came as such a surprise to many; you just don’t see these fabrics being made available locally.

Extra-credit reading

  • Survey Shows More Than Half of Dynamic Language Developers Are Looking To Build Cloud-based Applications in Next Year

Pau for now…


Dell’s New High Performance Analytics & Cloud Server

April 21, 2010

Last but not least in our tour of the first flight of servers in Dell’s PowerEdge C line is the C2100.  This was filmed last month at our launch right after we closed down our whisper suite.  Click below and join solutions architect Rafael Zamora as he leads you through the thrills, chills and spills of this cool new machine.

Spoiler Alert! A few Highlights

  • This machine is a great high performance data analytics and cloud optimized storage server.  It’s perfect for use in conjunction with software from our Cloud ISV partners Joyent, Aster Data, Canonical or Greenplum.
  • The entire front can be jam-packed with disk drives for mega storage.  You can get up to 24TB by loading twelve 3.5inch 2TB drives.
  • While the C2100 has same system board as the  C1100, it comes with twice the real estate in a 2U form factor.
  • There’s even a platform for two additional drives that you can use for a bunch of different purposes such as separating production and non-production traffic.

Pau for now….


PowerEdge C1100 – Skinny & Dense

April 13, 2010

Here is the third in my series of four videos exploring the new Dell PowerEdge C server line.  Today’s feature, the PowerEdge C1100.

If you’re wondering about the funky game show-like setting, I shot this after hours on the day of our launch in the whisper suite.  Your guide, as before, is the incomparable Dell Solutions Architect, Rafael Zamora.

A few highlights

  • The C1100 is a high memory, cluster optimized, compute node
  • Dont let its slim pizza box looks fool you, upfront you can pack either four 3.5 inch drives or ten 2.5 inch drives.
  • For high memory optimized compute you can get 18 DIMM sticks for 144GB of RAM.
  • Comes with your choice of either Intel’s Nehalem or Westmere processors.
  • Raf also gives a couple of examples of recent customers and how they’ve decide to configure their units.
  • The C1100 will also serve as the cloud management server for the upcoming Joyent solution and the Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud.

Tune in next week when Rafael will take us through the PowerEdge C2100.

Pau for now…


Dell’s New Cloud Server line – An Overview

March 30, 2010

At last week’s Dell Launch, “Solutions for the Virtual Era,” we unveiled the first three systems in our new PowerEdge C line.  These “hyper-scale inspired” systems are based on designs that we have built for our largest scaled-out customers such as Windows Azure, Facebook, Ask.com and Tencent.

The PowerEdge C line is targeted at both Public and Private cloud builders as well as HPC, Web 2.0, gaming and large scaled out web farms.  In the video below, Dell solutions architect Rafael Zamora walks us through the PowerEdge C6100, C1100 and C2100.

Upcoming posts

In the days to come I will be posting individual walk-thrus of each of the three systems.  I will also be posting interviews I did with executives from our cloud partners Joyent, Aster Data, Greenplum and Eucalyptus (who’s not a partner but provides a key component of our partner Canonical’s Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud).

Extra-Credit reading

Pau for now…


Dell Unveils Cloud Solutions (Yippee!)

March 24, 2010

Today is the big day.  The one we’ve been working towards for a long time.  As a part of Dell’s quarterly launch “Solutions for the Virtual Era,” we are announcing the introduction of:

  • Dell Cloud Solution for Web Applications, our first Revolutionary cloud solution.  Partnering with enterprise-class cloud pioneer Joyent, we are offering a turnkey private PaaS solution comprised of pre-tested, pre-assembled and fully-supported hardware, software and services — all sold and supported by Dell.  This integrated solution is targeted at enterprise app developers who are looking to develop “new world” applications in the cloud to be deployed in the cloud.
  • The Cloud Partner Program Working with cloud ISVs we will be offering easy-to-buy and deploy cloud solutions and blueprints optimized for and validated on Dell platforms.  The first three partners we are announcing are Aster Data (providing web analytics), Canonical (offering an open source Infrastructure-as-a-Service private cloud) and Greenplum (self-service data warehousing).   (On the Evolutionary cloud side we will continue to work with VMware and Microsoft  and stay tuned for news on what’s happening on the Windows Azure front :).
  • A new line of hyperscale-inspired PowerEdge C servers including the PowerEdge C1100, C2100 and C6100 targeting HPC, data analytics, gaming and cloud builders.  These are based on the designs we have created for the some of the worlds largest internet companies and cloud providers.
  • A suite of cloud professional services to help customers assess, deploy, design and manage dedicated solutions.

This is just a quick overview of what we are announcing today.  Stay tuned for more details and info in the coming days and weeks.

Extra credit reading: Our Cloud solutions press release

Pau for now…


James Duncan: From Reasonably Smart to Joyent

June 23, 2009

I’m attending Enterprise 2.0 here in Boston and although it’s relatively small, I’m finding it pretty interesting.  Case in point, James Duncan, Joyent‘s Director of platform strategy.  James is staffing Joyent’s pod at the event and an hour ago I dragged him away for a quick podcast.

Some of the topics James tackles:

  • How James got into the cloud in the first place.
  • From Fotango to Zimki to Canon to Ski bum (and his connection with Canonical’s Simon Wardley).
  • How a bad experience with Ruby and an epiphany with the Git version control system made him “Reasonably Smart
  • Open Source and JavaScript
  • Being Acquired by Joyent
  • What he see’s happening in the cloud in the next 12-24 mos.
  • How he enjoys the immediacy the cloud brings of taking a concept from idea to deployed app in hours rather than days and how, at the push of a button, it allows you to “hang your bits out for judgement.”

Pau for now…


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