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HP CloudSystem Matrix: Managing at a Higher Level

This Illuminata Spotlight discusses HP CloudSystem Matrix and its use as an out-of-the-box platform for private clouds suited to enterprise IT.

Many now look to the idea of “cloud computing” as their future ideal state. Clouds emerged first as a mechanism for Web and network computing, but have rapidly captured the imagination of enterprises and service providers as well. But what suits Web and network computing isn’t necessarily what enterprises and service providers need. This Illuminata Spotlight discusses HP CloudSystem Matrix, a ready-to-run IT infrastructure, and its use as an out-of-the-box platform for private clouds suited to enterprise IT.

White Paper Excerpt

The effort to make IT “more manageable” has been going on for decades. The tools, techniques, and strategies introduced over the years have helped us scale from when we could count our computers on our fingers to today, where we count them by the thousands, if not hundred-thousands. But it’s a constant race.  As IT’s economic and social importance ratchets up every year, so do the scale points and service levels required. We have to keep upping the bar.

One of the key problems over the years is that manageability has been thought of, designed, and acquired as an add-on. We buy and deploy tools to monitor and coordinate. But they’re installed after the fact, rather than ”part of the system.”

For years, it’s been clear that to make systems fundamentally more manageable, you have to build manageability in from the get-go. It’s also been clear that no amount of hardware sensing or firmware updating is enough. We must move to a higher level of management—one focused on business applications and delivered service levels, and on the processes that IT and business users participate in.

That’s where HP’s CloudSystem Matrix comes in. Matrix builds on HP’s BladeSystem, storage, and supporting management tools, but combines them in a service-oriented, shared-infrastructure way that changes the nature of IT management. Rather than “BladeSystem plus some management tools,” CloudSystem Matrix is a coordinated system for setting up pools of modular resources and flexibly deploying IT services across those pools. Matrix provides a higher level of abstraction—one in which IT services are first-class citizens, and which is specifically designed to avoid “some assembly required.”

Infrastructure by the Pound

The history of IT has been a long march from roll-your-own to buy-not-build. Most enterprises would today no more build their own systems than they’d perform do-it-yourself dentistry. Even aerospace, finance, and telecommunications —industries once famous for idiosyncratic homebrews have long since recognized the economic virtues of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) solutions. Beyond “building less,” there’s a major trend toward “assemble and configure less.” Every system used to ship in numerous boxes; local admins would then unpack, assemble, load software onto, cable up, connect the storage and test the system—a substantial on-site labor cost and delay.  Continue…

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