IT Solutions Blog

Streamlining VMware Workflows with Hitachi HNAS

Posted by Unitiv on Mon, Jan 05, 2015 @ 11:12 AM

It’s hard to believe that it’s only been a little over 14 years ago that VMware hit the market. Coming in at just the right time, it quickly permeated the virtualization marketplace and became the industry’s heaviest hitter. Today, many VMware implementations are reaching maturity, and organizations are looking for ways to not only organize their VMware deployments, but also to make them more cost effective. Hitachi Data System offers one piece to the puzzle with its HNAS line of storage virtualization.

1338365792The challenge faced by any storage provider in a VMware environment today is the ability to make full use of the benefits of storage virtualization. Turing your NAS environment around so that it is, in effect, a single storage pool offers a significant increase in efficiency.

Here are some of the ways that Hitachi’s HNAS products streamline your VMware workflows:

  • Finally be able to achieve the highest possible ROI that you’ve long expected to see from your VMware environment.
  • Be able to manage your VMware environment with much greater ease and with a reduction in performance concerns.
  • Achieve your necessary backup and recovery service levels.
  • Be able to run your most mission critical applications via NAS.

Making some of these changes seems risky. Many enterprises are hesitant, for example, to bring mission critical applications into the NAS world, for fear of a major performance hit. The truth, however, is that Hitachi’s latest iteration of NAS systems will blow you away, and allow literally thousands of virtual machines to fly.

With a NAS solutions that’s powered by VMware, you can achieve what you thought was impossible. You can spin up, back up and recover literally thousands of desktops or virtual machines in just a matter of minutes. Even your most business critical applications can flourish in this environment. With technologies like directory-level cloning, your data is better protected and more accessible than ever before. Even large databases, such as Oracle and SAP, can be snapped in just seconds.

Data migration tools for NAS from HDS help to make it so you can migrate to the latest technology with virtually zero downtime, and achieve the lowest possible TCO.

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Topics: hitachi data systems

5 Ways Dell SonicWALL Secures the Denver Broncos

Posted by Unitiv on Fri, Jan 02, 2015 @ 10:08 AM

Dell_Sonicwall2.jpg-resized-600Like other organizations, professional football teams are ultimately a business that relies on technology. That technology has to be both fast and secure. Whether it’s the 300 employees that work for the team or whether it’s the tens of thousands of fans that populate the stadium on game day, the Broncos needed a scalable firewall solution. To meet their need, Dell turned to Dell and a SuperMassive next-gen firewall. In addition, the club implemented Dell SonicWALL remote access hardware to keep its personnel connected when they’re on the road.

Here are some of the benefits the Dell solution provides to the organization:

  1. Online defense and flexibility are increased. The SonicWALL SuperMassive 9200 firewall is perfect for the stadium’s network traffic. Its solid engineering and plenty of horsepower mean that it can serve to manage the club’s needs for years to come.
  2. Rapid implementation of a new mobile solution. In addition to the firewall equipment, the Broncos installed a Dell SonicWALL Secure Remote Access (SRA) 4600 to allow mobile users to connect. This solution went up in just two days, and was implemented with a Dell engineer who provided training and configuration to administrators.
  3. More ticketing security and better ticketing performance. The SonicWALL equipment installed for the Broncos let them move their ticketing system behind the firewall, adding an extra layer of security and boasting of the equipment’s PCI compliance.
  4. Easier VPN access. The Secure Remote Access appliance allowed the Broncos to offload traffic for their VPN from the primary firewall to the SRA. Setting up the appliance took only about an hour to set up, including a portal for vendors and one for employees.
  5. Greater IT control. This solution gives the Broncos IT staff a greater degree of control over its high speed Internet connections. The SonicWall Analyzer helps to identify which users and services are using excessive bandwidth, and create limitations to make sure everything runs smoothly. In addition, network rules and policies are quick to set up, reducing the commitment of IT to maintenance and overhead.

This implementation for the Denver Broncos demonstrates just how flexible and robust the Dell SonicWALL solutions can be.


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Topics: dell sonicwall

5 Ways the Nutanix VCP Beats Traditional Datacenter Infrastructure

Posted by Unitiv on Fri, Dec 19, 2014 @ 10:04 AM

When it comes to your data center, flexibility should be a major priority. While converged infrastructure, traditionally, often serves to limit flexibility to one degree or another, that isn’t necessarily the case with the Nutanix Virtual computing platform. The Nutanix solution takes the compute (server) function and the storage tier and combines them into one integrated device.

Based on the kind of web-scale technologies that provide the backbone for most of the major cloud services, Nutanix brings world-class flexibility down to enterprises without having to reinvent your entire IT environment.

Here are five ways of implementing the Nutanix Virtual Computing Platform can be deployed:

  1. Converged. With a converged datacenter infrastructure, you can deliver your services much more efficiently and economically, and you’ll use fewer resources to do so. We know from service leaders like Google and Facebook that old-fashioned Storage Area Networks create limitations that converged infrastructure solves. With storage and compute in a single system, Nutanix Virtual Computing Platform nodes all I/O and operations are handled via a local, industry-standard hypervisor. This gives you the kind of flexibility and scalability you need in today’s world.
  2. Scale-out. Being able to scale a datacenter in the past meant deploying more and more powerful (and more and more expensive) servers, networks and storage. Rather than scaling up, you need to be able to scale out, horizontally. Simply add additional Nutanix notes when you need more storage or compute, one at a time, with no system disruption.
  3. Software defined. Nutanix software-defined solutions separate policy control from your hardware substrate. The distributed software layer controls intelligence, making management and programmatic control easier and more centralized. The Nutanix Virtual Computing Platform lets you take storage from being a passive data keeper into an active system.
  4. Server-attached flash. Flash gives you dramatically faster I/O performance. Nutanix VCP gives you enterprise-grade flash in every node, giving you the best possible application performance and a fully persistent data tier in flash.
  5. Hybrid. Today’s data centers are evolving in many directions, including both private and public clouds. Your team is embracing multiple virtualization technologies, and Nutanix is the right solution for this kind of environment. It functions independently from storage media, and runs on all of today’s top hypervisors, giving you seamless hybrid cloud environment. 

A datacenter infrastructure built on Nutanix VCP is just the kind of infrastructure that can take you into the future.

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Topics: nutanix

20 Ways Hitachi Content Platform Helps Leverage Cloud Environments

Posted by Unitiv on Mon, Dec 08, 2014 @ 01:47 PM


Traditional storage implementations have a tough time offering the kinds of integration that today’s IT leaders want when it comes to S3 public cloud environments. Traditionally, IT has been constrained to rely on cloud solutions separate from their own enterprise environment. This makes it hard to leverage the economy of cloud technology with enterprise-level security, and connect with multiple private and public clouds in an agile way.

Today, Hitachi Data Systems offers a way out. The Hitachi Content Platform brings a level of flexibility, fluidity and agility that’s hard to find elsewhere. Here are some of the features you’ll find in HCP that helps you leverage your cloud environments:

  1. Storage that is both high-density and high-efficiency. It implements cloud tiering technologies in order to utilize capacity from Hitachi Data Systems storage services, as well as a number of other popular cloud storage options.
  2. Reliable topology architecture that creates reliability and offers global access.
  3. Scalability and multi-tenant capabilities.
  4. Active data protection.
  5. Easy set-up, management and change procedures.
  6. Advanced tools for gathering metadata and intelligence.
  7. Full support for both IPv4 and IPv6 Internet protocols, in addition to a variety of legacy, contemporary and even emerging storage protocols as well as various media types.
  8. File sync and sharing via the Hitachi Content Platform Anywhere.
  9. Integration with Hitachi Data Ingestor, which allows you to connect remote as well as branch offices.
  10. A lower footprint in floor space, power use and cooling needs, while being able to store greater amounts of data.
  11. Utilization of cloud economics as well as technologies like cloud bursting
  12. Customized hybrid cloud architecture using public cloud services, or a combination of several different public cloud services.
  13. Maximized performance and availability due to the inclusion of enterprise class components.
  14. Elimination of one of the most expensive elements of traditional backup: tape-based backup solutions.
  15. Greater amount of data managed per admin.
  16. Automation of operations and preparation for big data analytics.
  17. Automatic hardware changes.
  18. The ability to evolve to cloud, big data and Web 2.0 applications while addressing current storage issues.
  19. Empowerment of the mobile work force.
  20. Improved branch and remote office efficiency.

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Topics: storage

How To Manage a BYOD Environment

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Tue, Dec 02, 2014 @ 09:57 AM

If you’re like most organizations out there, chances are pretty good you’re already knee-deep in a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) environment. While BYOD can be good for your business in that it allows your users to identify and use the too they believe is best for the job, it can create a management nightmare. Mobile Device Management solutions that make managing the new workplace a snap.

Companies like Airwatch and MobileIron offer a number of solutions for a mobile BYOD environment. From Mobile Application Management to Mobile Content Management to Laptop Management and Mobile Email Management, these solutions can cover just about any environment you can dream up.

Here are some of the important principles:

  • Today’s enterprise has a diverse fleet of devices. Mobile devices are becoming more and more common, and this is a good thing. Users are able to do what they want and need to do in a much more efficient way than ever before. Airwatch is based on the idea that users know what devices work best for them, but that it’s up to the organization to effectively manage the unique threats created by this new reality. 
  • A single management console. Airwatch provides a single management console that lets you view all of the devices, no matter what platform or type of device, used by and connected to your enterprise. This includes employee-owned as well as corporate-owned devices. With directory integration services for both AD and LDAP, the custom roles that already exist in your corporate structure can be implemented into your mobile device management, as well. In addition, the single management console creates a single point of enrollment for devices in your enterprise, as well.
  • Real time data. Airwatch uses real-time dashboards that give administrators a high-level graphical view of the deployment of devices in their fleets. From there, they can drill down into the enrolled devices and look at all of the user information details, as well.

Through Unitiv, we can help you find a comprehensive way to get a handle on the new reality of the BYOD enterprise.

Topics: byod, EMM, Mobile Device Management, airwatch, mobileiron

7 Ways HDS Supports the Remote Office

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Mon, Nov 24, 2014 @ 01:04 PM

Remote offices have long presented a number of challenges to companies. Today, however, technology has advanced to the place where there are more options available than ever. Unfortunately, complex remote office backup solutions create not only a significant potential for the loss of data, but can also be something of a security risk.

If your enterprise could benefit from eliminating back up at your remote locations while maintaining security and mitigating the risk of data loss, Hitachi Data Systems may have a solution that fits your needs.

The Edge to Core data protection solution from HDS is a cost-effective, small-footprint way for your remote offices, branch offices and cloud users to reach the cloud. It replaces the infrastructure you would otherwise need for local backup and archiving and enables the dynamic movement of data to the proper storage tier.

Here are seven of the ways that the HDS edge to core solution reduces your costs and complexity:

  1. Reduces the footprint of IT external to the data center, delivering tiered storage services via a single data center infrastructure. 
  2. Removes the need for edge backups via a reliable and on-ramp to your centralized storage solution, providing access to the full suite of storage management as well as content governance features. 
  3. Secures content via encryption at rest and in transit. 
  4. Fully integrates with Microsoft Active Directory as well as LDAP, streamlining cloud deployments. 
  5. Supports hundreds or even thousands of edge devices via one single core system. 
  6. Provides the ability to share content between your edge sites, aiding greatly in collaboration and content distribution. 
  7. Increases performance and access times via content pinning and bandwidth optimization.

The seamless Edge to Core solution, ultimately, provides a low-cost onramp for those remote users. It gives edge users access to the deep storage containers of the entire organization, and it offers new and useful capabilities. This solution thereby reduces the time required for management, allowing your organization to focus on capacity, utilization and performance at the core rather than at every remote location.

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Topics: hds, remote office, ldap

5 Reasons Hosted Collaboration Works for You

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Wed, Nov 19, 2014 @ 02:55 PM

bigstock The words Next Big Thing on a  46760632 (1) resized 600Today’s technological trends offer a number of opportunities for collaboration and streamlining of your IT business processes. One of the most powerful value propositions in this area has to do with unified communications and collaboration. UC&C lets you get the right data to the right people at the right time. It allows you to collaborate with various stakeholders both inside and outside of your organization.

Here are seven of the top reasons you should consider hosted collaboration for your organization today:

  1. Deployment flexibility. In the recent past, communications infrastructure had to be implemented in a case by case basis. Every branch office and remote office had their own PBX, their own voice mail and their own features. As more and more organizations migrate to an IP communications base, this model becomes much more limiting in its flexibility. A hosted solution gives flexibility to the entire organization in terms of deployment, wherever the end user may be located.
  2. Centralized management and administration. Premise-based applications have scaling administrative tasks and functions that management has to account for. This includes things like user management, profile changes, software patches and more. The process is replicated at every premise, creating greater overhead and greater margin of error. Hosted collaboration brings all of these tasks into a centralized location, and changes that take place can be made companywide without all of the extra overhead.
  3. Cost efficiency. Hosted collaboration offers a lower barrier to entry, the ability to more accurately plan budgets, a lower overall Total Cost of Ownership than traditional models, and greater efficiency in the areas of IT staffing and IT resources.
  4. Greater business continuity. Disaster recovery and business continuity are critical in today’s worldwide, 24x7 marketplace. Collaborative applications must be made to be available whenever and wherever a worker is located. Because hosted solutions aren’t tied to one specific geographic location, they offer a greater degree of reliability in the event of disaster.
  5. Agility. Traditional deployments take time and resources, and must be planned well in advance. Hosted collaboration services let the IT department meet the needs of the organization’s business leaders faster and more efficiently than ever before.

If you’re not yet using hosted collaboration, now may be the time to take a look.

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Topics: Cloud, box, hosted collaboration, hcp anywhere

Structure and Consolidate data with Hitachi Data Discovery Suite

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Mon, Nov 17, 2014 @ 10:47 AM

It’s a simple fact of how organizations grow: inevitably, you’re going to be looking at application data living on heterogeneous storage platforms. This creates data silos that prevent your organization from consolidating information and making it searchable across multiple platforms. Fortunately, Hitachi Data Systems offers a way out of this naturally-occurring inefficiency.

Hitachi Data Discovery Suite gives you a central repository for your content that will allow users to store their data on a single platform. It can leverage metadata to allow your searches to be content-aware, and to offer structure to data queries. This will, in the end, greatly improve the overall search capability of your enterprise.

Petabytes of data, cross-platform, at your fingertips

What exactly is it that HDDS can do for you organization? Simply put, it will give you a single point of access to data across your entire information infrastructure. HDDS lets you:

  • Search across data platforms without having to rely on a separate search engine for each one.
  • Create complex searches that span both text and meta-data, including custom meta-data.
  • Search across various data silos in order to find the data that you need for your business and in order to maintain compliance with various regulations and regulatory agencies.
  • Employ a single point of access to mine content – even unstructured content – throughout your entire organization and in literally hundreds of unstructured data formats.
  • Index, as well as search, across objects numbering in the millions or even the billions, across Windows file shares, Linux and non-Hitachi systems.

Keeping big data compliant

HDDS is scalable and based on Hadoop technology, giving you some of the most powerful, secure content-aware searches possible. This lets you be proactive when it comes to litigation, for example. It makes e-discovery a relatively simple and quick task, eliminating barriers that can cost you both time and money.

Hitachi Data Discovery Suite also empowers you to meet compliance and corporate governance needs in an efficient way. It’s built knowing that you’re going to be working with the needs of big data, and provides you with a compliance safety net.

More about Hitachi Data Systems

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Topics: Structured data, hitachi data discovery suite, hds

Secure File Sharing and Synchronization in a BYOD Environment

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Wed, Nov 12, 2014 @ 08:31 PM

BYOD resized 600The sharing of data in the enterprise today has become increasingly complex. With literally thousands of types of different devices that might connect to your network via BYOD policies, you’re faced with providing security and data protection. This security has to extend far beyond the walls of the data center, all the way out to all of those disparate devices.

Making things even more complex is the fact that you’re now pushing and pulling data across not only your own enterprise’s network, but across other networks including public networks. Securing your data in this environment takes the right tool.

What Users Want

One of the big challenges facing IT is offering a file share and synchronization solution for work-related data that matches employee expectation. With the large number of free and low-cost cloud storage and sharing solutions out there, users have come to expect certain things that also can create problems, such as:

  • How to offer secure access from mobile devices, smartphones, tablets, laptops, tablets and desktops while maintaining control and governance.
  • How to keep network and storage infrastructure efficient by eliminating duplication.
  • How to offer the type and volume of storage required, along with backup and data management, at an affordable price. 

The challenge isn’t an easy one. Fortunately, Hitachi Data System offers one possible solution.

Hitachi Content Platform (HCP) Anywhere to the Rescue

Hitachi’s HCP Anywhere is the first on-premises, end-to-end and integrated solution for offering secure and safe file sharing and synchronization for the enterprise. Built on the HCP object store technology, this solution relies on private clouds to offer your end users what they want without sacrificing control and governance.

HCP Anywhere offers:

  • Security. This solution is on-premises, includes encryption and access control, is managed by IT, and even has the capability of remote wipe.
  • Ease of use. Built on Microsoft Active Directory, it integrates with client apps and features ease-of-use traits such as self-registration.
  • Efficiency. HCP Anywhere uses compression, single instancing, spin-down, supports multiple media types and more.

HCP Anywhere can be access from just about any location, wherever you have a web browser. A mobile application is also available for most smartphones and tablets.

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Topics: byod, hcp anywhere, file sharing, hds

8 Key Dell Acquisitions that Make Your Life Easier

Posted by Crystal Nichols on Mon, Nov 10, 2014 @ 01:07 PM

8Dell resized 600The tried and true adage says, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.” In the technology world, that more often than not translates to, “If you can’t beat ‘em, acquire ‘em.”

One of the prime examples in the industry of increasing service and product offerings through purchasing other companies is Dell. Dell’s acquisitions over the years have helped the computer giant bring some of the best and most diverse solutions right to your door.

Here are a few of the acquisitions Dell has made over the past decade or so, and the products these acquisitions have brought you:

  1. SonicWALL. Already a major player in the network security and data protection field in 2012 when Dell bought them out, SonicWALL brought world-class security and performance that would perfectly complement Dell’s server and network offerings.
  2. ASAP Software. Licensing management can be a headache in most enterprise environments. The purchase of ASAP in 2007 gave Dell a comprehensive management tool that handles licensing, purchasing, renewals and compliance of a wide variety of enterprise software. 
  3. RNA Networks. In 2011 Dell acquired RNA Networks, giving Dell a competitive edge with the memory virtualization technology provided by the company. 
  4. Gale Technologies. We’re just starting now to see some of the important results that will eventually come from the 2012 purchase of this converged infrastructure provider.
  5. Wyse Technology. Some were shocked when Dell purchased Wyse in 2012. Those following the overall trends understand, however, that Dell was in desperate need of a desktop virtualization technology, and Wyse had exactly what Dell needed at the time.
  6. Alienware. While many will write off the 2006 purchase of the high-end gaming computer manufacturer in 2006, the fact is that both sides have been able to benefit from advanced performance technologies offered by the other.
  7. Force10 Networks. Dell added a significant component to its network offerings in 2011 when it brought Force10’s networking solutions into the fold.
  8. Boomi/MessageOne/Everdream. The purchase of these three companies from 2007 to 2010 marked Dell’s entry into the SaaS world, giving them a starting foothold in the field.

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Topics: dell, SonicWall, Wyse, force10