HP’s Midsized Push
Seagate Optimizes Drives for Digital Video Surveillance Systems
VMware Next Gen Hypervisor in Server Hardware
Sun Announces Quad-Core
Sun Beefs Up Security and Reduces Costs of Virtual Desktops
HP has announced new products, solutions, and services targeting
midsize companies, the Global 500,000, to help accelerate growth and reduce
operating costs. Highlighting the launch is “Shorty,” the compact HP
BladeSystem c3000 enclosure for smaller technology sites, branch offices, and
remote locations. Implementation of the c3000 requires no special power,
cooling, or staff, easing midsize customers’ ability to gain the benefits of a
fully bladed environment. According to HP, The BladeSystem c3000 delivers power
and cooling savings of up to 30%,
On the software front, the company announced its HP Midsize
Business Solutions, which are tested blueprints for workloads including mail
Midsized businesses from an opportunity perspective are big
business and the IT systems vendors have known this for some time.
The availability of several key technologies including HP
Insight Control, HP Thermal Logic power and cooling, HP Virtual Connect, and
the HP NonStop midplane serve to illustrate that the c3000 is in the same
competitive league as other HP blade chassis, and the midsize focus does not
equate with a stripped-down solution. In addition, if needed, many of the
components can be relocated into a c7000 chassis should corporate growth
dictate scaling up the blade solution. Along this same modular way of thinking,
the BladeSystem Solution Blocks offer a “self contained” application solution
that can be housed within a BladeSystem. We see this as a clever approach to
address the reality that most midsized organizations do not view applications
as a collection of technology, but rather as a business process. Hence, selling
With this announcement, and the recent SMB-focused blade
Seagate Technology has announced that its SV35 Series hard drives, specifically designed for optimal performance in digital video surveillance systems, now have a top capacity of 1 terabyte, providing thirty-two full days of high-resolution video streaming. In addition, Seagate is broadening its hard drive offerings targeted at video surveillance applications to include the Seagate Barracuda ES and EE25 Series hard drives, now providing a complete range of products addressing the security needs of large and small organizations across a wide range of markets. Surveillance digital video recording systems are overwhelmingly replacing closed-circuit television and non-technical surveillance and security systems. S-DVR market growth is driven by the needs of the homeland security, retail, casinos/hospitality, and financial and utility industries, among others. Digital video security systems now enable sophisticated software capabilities to automatically preview and flag security events in seconds, where manually reviewed images might take days or even months to locate similar information. Hard-drive storage is a critical component in S-DVR systems, and high-resolution image capture moves the quality of stored video from grainy and marginally useful to crisp and detailed. The resulting improved images can used more effectively to combat crime and improve business practices in a wide variety of industries. The Seagate SV35 Series, the Seagate Barracuda ES and the Seagate EE25 Series are engineered for continuous use and promise reliability, ruggedness, and capacity.
Seagate SV35 Series hard drives make use of the company’s latest advancements in hard-drive technology with features designed specifically for digital video surveillance recording. With about eight times the capacity of a 160GB hard drive, a single 1TB SV35 enables a multitude of video cameras to be deployed. In addition, the larger capacity enables longer archival periods and allows the S-DVR to take full advantage of the high-resolution, capacity-intensive video streams to deploy intelligent video applications. The Barracuda ES hard drive provides Serial ATA storage for multi-drive enterprise network surveillance applications where storage system redundancy is often required. The new generation of Seagate SV35 Series hard drives are scheduled to begin shipping in December 2007. The EE25 Series and Barracuda ES Series hard drives are currently shipping in volume to customers worldwide.
There are several complementary trends feeding the demand for specialized disk drives in digital video surveillance. The transition from CCTV to digital format has helped to mature the marketplace and establish digital as the standard format. In addition to the physical security implications, remote monitoring and optimized search capabilities also contribute to the move toward digital format. There is an observable need for video monitoring beyond security. For instance, in some industries there is a perceived need to document sales transactions so that dealers can establish that their sales and finance people provided complete and accurate disclosure.
In addition to these trends there is a growing recognition that any type of investigation in today’s world requires a combination of electronic/information procedures along with traditional investigation. Many investigations of wrongdoing involve the simultaneous video recording of an individual at a special workstation along with the data forensics capture of his or her activity. We believe that this holistic investigation methodology will be another stimulus for the kind of specialized disk introduced by Seagate in this announcement. We will leave the sensitive issue of employee monitoring for another discussion.
VMware, Inc. has introduced VMware ESX Server 3i, the
industry’s next-generation thin hypervisor that will to be integrated in server
hardware from Dell, Fujitsu, Fujitsu Siemens Computers, HP,
Overall, we are quite pleased with this announcement as it addresses one of the limitations of current VMware technology, namely that the hypervisor is software- as opposed to firmware- or hardware-based. With early implementations of virtualization, having a software-based hypervisor was generally a non issue as many of the workloads and servers being consolidated through VMware technology were so pitifully underutilized that any virtualization scheme netted significant improvements in overall utilization. Over time as organizations have become more virtualization- and consolidation-savvy, larger and often more strategic workloads are being deployed on virtual servers while systems vendors have simultaneously begun delivery of mutlicore and mutlithreaded server architectures. It is amazing the difference a few years has made.
The execution speed and inherent security of hardware-based
hypervisors to us are the two leading reasons for our preference for hardware-based
approaches. Until now, such solutions were largely limited to the domain of
In highlighting its support for the new Quad-Core
Perhaps September is to be the month for quadcoremania. In all seriousness, these and other vendors’ core processors are significant in that their modest price points and likely high delivery volumes will change fundamental assumptions about what kind of processing technology will be the default in servers, and increasingly desktops. The days of single-core processors as the modus operandi of the industry are rapidly ending. Yet at the same time, unleashing the performance of these types of processors in many cases will remain largely underutilized until software designs catch up with the multicore hardware architecture. Granted, ever faster chip clock rates will deliver some performance gains in and of themselves, but the inherent parallel processing of the hardware will not be fully exploited until operating systems, and applications in particular are redesigned to take advantage of the new multicore reality.
Developing multithreaded software is a non-trivial task that
requires not only new developer knowledge and techniques, but also IDEs,
compilers, and other technologies that are capable of creating multithreaded
applications. This is one area where Sun is ahead of the curve; having
delivered the Sun Studio 12 tools. These tools are the keys to unlock the
latent multithreaded performance of the latest Sun,
With the significant price performance offered by the
Sun Microsystems has announced new software to provide a more secure and manageable virtual desktop environment. Sun Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Software 1.0, installed on the Solaris OS, helps enable organizations to move applications and operating systems off of personal computers, consolidate them in the datacenter, and present them to end users on a wide array of devices through high-performance display protocols. Sun VDI Software offers a highly-secure platform for accessing virtualized Microsoft Windows desktop environments from a wide variety of client devices. When Sun VDI Software is coupled with VMware Infrastructure software, desktops can be consolidated onto servers in the datacenter, with each user enjoying a dedicated virtual machine that is isolated from other users and customized to individual needs.
Utilizing Sun Fire x64 systems and VMware ESX Server, multiple desktop environments can be hosted on a single server, to allow users to access their desktop environments from traditional clients such as Windows and Mac OS X computers, as well as thin clients. Each virtual desktop functions as though it were running directly on the user’s computer, but critical data is kept in the datacenter where it can be more easily managed by IT and is less susceptible to loss or theft. Sun VDI software helps enable IT managers to set up new users, workgroups, or departments in minutes, controlling and managing desktops and updates centrally, reducing costs normally associated with a traditional distributed desktop model. Through this approach, users can seamlessly shift a desktop session between any supported device. Planned for availability in early 2008 as a component of Sun Virtual Desktop Solutions, the initial release of this VDI connector will support VMware Infrastructure deployments, with future versions planned to support other popular virtualization solutions. Sun VDI Software will be available in October 2007, priced at $149 per user, and will support Solaris and Linux.
The virtual desktop is bound to accelerate in popularity as more organizations move to a point where they have to make a decision about migration to the Windows Vista environment. While this decision may be in the offing, the window for making significant technology decisions has a way of accelerating. There also appears to be a subtle, yet clear movement of leading edge technology users to Mac laptops and over time the population of Macs at high-tech and security-sensitive companies in particular is likely to increase. Globalization trends and concerns about proprietary applications are additional factors inducing organizations to centralize their applications off local PCs. We believe that Sun is correctly reading the technology work pattern tealeaves and that fortune for this class of infrastructure is bright.