Go Beyond HyperConverged with HPE dHCI
Andy Spencer
Private Cloud Presales Specialist
10/05/2021

The benefits of HyperConverged Infrastructure (HCI) have been discussed for some time, but HCI is not always the right fit for all organisations. HCI uses server nodes in a cluster with a virtualisation hypervisor to provide compute and storage capacity to Virtual Machines running on the nodes.

But there are drawbacks to the HCI approach. Scalability and flexibility are not as simple with HCI as some organisations need. If additional resources are needed, either compute or storage, then both must be scaled at the same time through the addition of extra nodes. This leads to what is known as the HCI Tax, which could mean additional hypervisor licences to run on those nodes, stranded resources when one component requires expansion but not the other, and the cost of additional network ports when a new node is added to satisfy additional capacity requirements.

HPE’s Nimble Storage disaggregated HCI (dHCI) offering gives the flexibility to scale compute and storage independently. Deployment can be done in one of two ways: a “Greenfield” deployment or a “Brownfield” deployment. Both approaches use the same fundamental building blocks, namely good quality 10/25GbE Top of Rack (ToR) switches, HPE DL based servers, and HPE Nimble Gen5 iSCSI storage. The Greenfield approach uses brand new kit in all these areas, whereas the Brownfield approach allows customers to utilise existing good quality switching from multiple vendors, with new or existing HPE servers and new HPE Nimble Gen5 iSCSI storage. Existing equipment must be supported and use an HPE provided ESXi image.

Need more compute capability? Add another server into the cluster without disruption to the running VMs. Need more storage capacity? Add more storage to the Nimble array without disruption to the running VMs. You can even add existing hosts to the dHCI configuration, allowing you to repurpose existing equipment that may currently be sitting idle.

HPE’s dHCI solutions are designed to be Simple to deploy in 15 minutes; Simple to manage through the VMware tools you already know like vCenter; Simple to scale with new servers auto-discovered and added to the cluster; Simple to support using HPE’s Infosight AI -Ops platform; Simple to protect with app aware copy data management; Simple for Multi-Cloud working alongside HPE’s Cloud Volumes to allow data portability; and Simple to upgrade.

Want your weekends back? Upgrades to the cluster are done with 1-click, based on a catalogue of available upgrades for the full stack.

Software Components

Catalog 1.0

Catalog 2.0

Catalog 3.0

Nimble OS

5.1.x.x

5.3.x.x

5.4.x.x

vCenter Server

6.7 U1

6.7 U2

6.7 U2

ESXi

6.7 U1

6.7 U3

6.7 U3

NCM

6.0.0-650030

6.0.0-650030

6.0.0-650030

SPP

2019.03.0

2019.03.0

2019.03.0

Note: Catalogs are hosted on HPE Infosight, will allow for dHCI private clouds to be “Allowlisted / Denylisted” from potential bad upgrades within a specific catalog version.

This pulls every piece of compatible firmware and software, with the exception of the vCenter Server which is upgraded manually, and applies all of the necessary components in order in a fully non-disruptive manner. VMs are evacuated from the host they are running on as that host is upgraded, and run on a different host while the upgrade completes.

HPE Nimble dHCI solutions use the power of HPE’s Infosight AI-Ops monitoring and management platform to give an unrivalled support experience. Over 1250 Trillion data points from real world deployed environments which allow HPE Nimble support to remediate potential issues before they even occur.

Still not convinced? Don’t just take our word for it. Nimble dHCI was voted Virtualisation, Cloud Infrastructure and DevOps winner at VMworld 2020.

In conclusion, if you want the simplicity of a Hyperconverged Infrastructure, with the flexibility to grow your solution independently; and the simplicity of 1-click upgrades from a best in class solution provider, then HPE Nimble dHCI is for you.

Ultima's HPE Partnership

As an HPE Gold Partner, we have wide ranging capabilities from pre-sales advice and design through to installation. With experience across multiple areas within HPE’s portfolio, we can provide you with a bespoke end-to-end solution, or platform for specific products. We have been recognised as the Top Value Partner 2019 as well as Intelligent Edge Partner of the Year for 2018.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note – 1-click upgrade currently requires vSphere DRS available on Enterprise+ licencing models.

Note – existing equipment used for Brownfield deployments must meet required specifications.

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