The concept of the software defined data centre (SDDC) has been with us for a few years now, but it is only recently that the network virtualisation platforms needed to make it happen have matured to point where real time deployments become possible.
VMware has done more than most to advance the technology, developing its EVO SDDC platform to combine infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) elements within a unified private cloud architecture.
Officially unveiled at the vendor’s VMworld 2015 event earlier this year, EVO SDDC (which builds on products formerly known as EVO:RACK and EVO:RAIL) offers ready built components hosted within containers provided by its vSphere virtualisation/hypervisor, Virtual SAN storage, and NSX network virtualisation platforms.
The intended benefit for cloud service providers and their business customers are simple: VDI services built on pre-qualified hardware and software and managed which can be automatically provisioned in a matter of hours using a new VMware orchestration tool, EVO SDDC Manager.
For any service provider struggling to spin up large volumes of VDI workloads on demand, the ability to create a single virtual rack spanning multiple physical resources – everything from network switches and services to power distribution units (PDUs) to cut time and manpower from the whole operation – could certainly help them streamline their operations.
Making the EVO SDDC hardware management services tool available under an open source license also allows equipment manufacturers to write their own APIs, which means multi-vendor hardware environments characteristic of most data centre environments can be accommodated.
Back in August, VMware estimated that more than 2,000 customers had adopted EVO SDDC and/or its predecessors, although we don’t know how many of those were cloud service providers and how many big enterprise customers hosting their own cloud services. But with the solution supporting up to 1,000 IaaS VMs and 2,000 virtual desktops simultaneously, the scale certainly looks like a service provider sell.
Written by Martin Courtney for Axians