Archive

Archive for the ‘Tech’ Category

Running for the OpenStack Board: “All In” on OpenStack

January 5, 2017 Leave a comment

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for SUSE, originally published at the SUSE Blog Site.

In thinking about the OpenStack community, our approach to the project going forward, and the upcoming Board elections, I’m reminded of a specific hand of the poker game Texas Hold ‘Em I observed a few years back between two players.

As one particular hand began, both players had similar chip stacks, and were each dealt cards that were statistically favorable to win.

The hand played out like most other hands – the flop, the turn, the river, betting, calling, etc.  And as the game continued toward its conclusion, those of us observing the game could see that one player was playing with the statistically better cards, and presumably the win.

But then the second player made a bold move that turned everything on its head.

He went “all in.”

The “all in” move in poker is one that commits all of your chips to the pot, and often requires your opponent to make a decision for most or all of their chips. It is an aggressive move in this scenario.

After taking some time to consider his options, the first player ultimately chose to fold his strong cards and cut his perceived losses, allowing the other player to claim the winnings.

And this prize can be claimed almost completely because of the “all in” strategy.

Clearly, going “all in” can be a very strong move indeed.

 

Decision Time in OpenStack

Next week – Monday, January 9 through Friday, January 13 – is an important week for the OpenStack community, as we elect the 2017 Individual Representatives to the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

I’m honored to have been nominated as a candidate for Board Director, to potentially serve the community again, as I did back in 2013.

Back in the summer of 2010, I was fortunate to be one of the few in the crowded ball room at the Omni Hotel in Austin, Texas, witnessing the birth of the OpenStack project. And it is amazing to see how far it has come – but with a tremendous amount of work yet to do.

allinOver the years, we’ve been fortunate to celebrate tremendous wins and market excitement. Other times, there were roadblocks to overcome.  And similar to the aforementioned poker game, we often had to analyze “the hand” we were dealt, “estimate the odds” of where cloud customers and the market was headed, and position ourselves to maximize chances for success – often trusting our instinct, when available data was incomplete at best.

And, as with many new projects that are in growth phase, our community was often put in a position to re-confirm our commitment to our mission. And our response was resounding and consistent on where we stood….

“All in.”

 

Remaining “All In” with OpenStack

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, it’s critical that we stay committed to the cause of OpenStack and its objective.

There are four key areas of focus for OpenStack, that I hope to advocate, if elected to the board.

  1. OpenStack adoption within the enterprise worldwide.  I am in the camp that very much believes in the private cloud (as well as public cloud), and that the open source and vendor communities need to put more effort and resources into ensuring OpenStack is the optimal private cloud out there, across all industries / geographies / etc.
  2. Designing and positioning OpenStack to address tangible business challenges.  The enterprise customer is not seeking a new technology – they looking for things like ways to make IT management more self service, a means to drive on-demand scalability of infrastructure and PaaS, and a way to operate workloads on-premise, AS WELL AS off-premise.
  3. Addressing the cultural IT changes that need to occur.  As cloud continues to permeate the enterprise IT organization, we need to deliver the right training and certifications to enable existing IT experts to transition to this new means of IT service.  If we can ensure these valuable people have a place in the new archetype, they will be our advocates as well.
  4. Championing the OpenStack operator.  The reality of cloud is not just in the using, but in the operating.  There is a strong contingent of operators within our community, and their role is critical to our success – we need to continue to enable this important function.

I’ve been fortunate to be a part of a number of technology movements in my career, just as they started to make the turn from innovative idea to consistent, reliable IT necessity. And this is why I continue to be excited about the prospect of OpenStack – I’m seeing growth with more customers, more use cases, more production implementations.

And, while there are may be detractors out there, coining catchy and nonsensical “as-a-Service” buzzwords, my position on OpenStack should sound familiar – because it hasn’t changed since Day One.

“All in.”

And, if given the opportunity, I hope to partner with you to get the rest of the world “all in” on OpenStack as well.

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

Joseph George is the Vice President of Solutions Strategy at SUSE, and is a candidate for OpenStack Board of Directors.  OpenStack Elections take place on the week of January 9, 2017.
Click here to learn more.

 

Advertisements

OpenStack, Now and Moving Ahead: Lessons from My Own Personal Transformation

December 15, 2016 Leave a comment

.

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for SUSE, originally published at the SUSE Blog Site.

It’s a transformative time for OpenStack.

90lbsAnd I know a thing or two about transformations.

Over the last two and a half years, I’ve managed to lose over 90 pounds.

(Yes, you read that right.)

It was a long and arduous effort, and it is a major personal accomplishment that I take a lot of pride in.

Lessons I’ve Learned

When you go through a major transformation like that, you learn a few things about the process, the journey, and about yourself.

With OpenStack on my mind these days – especially after being nominated for the OpenStack Foundation Board election – I can see correlations between my story and where we need to go with OpenStack.

While there are a number of lessons learned, I’d like to delve into three that are particularly pertinent for our open source cloud project.

1. Clarity on the Goal and the Motivation

It’s a very familiar story for many people.  Over the years, I had gained a little bit of weight here and there as life events occurred – graduated college, first job, moved cities, etc. And I had always told myself (and others), “By the time I turned 40 years old, I will be back to my high school weight.”

The year I was to turn 40, I realized that I was running out of time to make good on my word!

And there it was – my goal and my motivation.

So let’s turn to OpenStack – what is our goal and motivation as a project?

According to wiki.OpenStack.org, the Openstack Mission is “to produce the ubiquitous Open Source Cloud Computing platform that will meet the needs of public and private clouds regardless of size, by being simple to implement and massively scalable. OpenStack is open source, openly designed, openly developed by an open community.”

That’s our goal and motivation

  • meet the needs of public and private clouds
  • no matter the size
  • simple to deploy
  • very scalable
  • open across all parameters

While we exist in a time where it’s very easy to be distracted by every new, shiny item that comes along, we must remember our mission, our goal, our motivation – and stay true to what we set out to accomplish.

2. Staying Focused During the “Middle” of the Journey

When I was on the path to lose 90 pounds, it was very tempting to be satisfied during the middle part of the journey.

After losing 50 pounds, needless to say, I looked and felt dramatically better than I had been before.  Oftentimes, I was congratulated – as if I had reached my destination.

But I had not reached my destination.

While I had made great progress – and there were very tangible results to demonstrate that – I had not yet fully achieved my goal.  And looking back, I am happy that I was not content to stop halfway through. While I had a lot to be proud of at that point, there was much more to be done.

OpenStack has come a long way in its fourteen releases:

  • The phenomenal Newton release focused on scalability, interoperability, and resiliency – things that many potential customers and users have been waiting for.
  • The project has now been validated as 100% compliant by the Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII) as part of the Linux Foundation, a major milestone toward the security of OpenStack.
  • Our community now offers the “Certified OpenStack Adminstrator” certification, a staple of datacenter software that much of the enterprise expects, further validating OpenStack for them.

We’ve come a long way.   But there is more to go to achieve our ultimate goal.  Remember our mission: open source cloud, public and private, across all size clouds, massively scalable, and simple to implement.

We are enabling an amazing number of users now, but there is more to do to achieve our goal. While we celebrate our current success, and as more and more customers are being successful with OpenStack in production, we need to keep our eyes on the prize we committed to.

3. Constantly Learning and Adapting

While losing 90 pounds was a major personal accomplishment, it could all have been in vain if I did not learn how to maintain the weight loss once it was achieved.

This meant learning what worked and what didn’t work, as well as adapting to achieve a permanent solution.

Case in point: a part of most weight loss plans is to get plenty of water daily, something I still do to this day. While providing numerous health advantages, it is also a big help with weight loss. However, I found that throughout the day, I would get consumed with daily activities and reach the end of the day without having reached my water requirement goal.

Through some experimentation with tactics – which included setting up reminders on my phone and keeping water with me at all times, among other ideas – I arrived at my personal solution: GET IT DONE EARLY.

I made it a point to get through my water goal at the beginning of the day, before my daily activities began. This way, if I did not remember to drink regularly throughout the day, it was of no consequence since I had already met my daily goal.

We live in a world where open source is getting ever more adopted by more people and open source newbies. From Linux to Hadoop to Ceph to Kubernetes, we are seeing more and more projects find success with a new breed of users.  OpenStack’s role is not to shun these projects as isolationists, but rather understand how OpenStack adapts so that we get maximum attainment of our mission.

This also means that we understand how our project gets “translated” to the bevy of customers who have legitimate challenges to address that OpenStack can help with. It means that we help potential user wade through the cultural IT changes that will be required.

Learning where our market is taking us, as well as adapting to the changing technology landscape, remains crucial for the success of the project.

Room for Optimism

I am personally very optimistic about where OpenStack goes from here. We have come a long way, and have much to be proud of.  But much remains to be done to achieve our goal, so we must be steadfast in our resolve and focus.

And it is a mission that we can certainly accomplish.  I believe in our vision, our project, and our community.

And take it from me – reaching BIG milestones are very, very rewarding.

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

This Week: OpenStack Summit Barcelona!

October 26, 2016 Leave a comment

ossummit-barcelonaThis is a duplicate of a blog I authored for SUSE, originally published at the SUSE Blog Site.

In a few days, Stackers will congregate in beautiful Barcelona, Spain to kick off the bi-annual OpenStack Summit and User Conference, the 14th of its kind.

On the heels of the recent OpenStack Newton launch, we will see a wide variety of people, backgrounds, industries, and skill sets represented, all focused on learning about, sharing best practices on, and working on the future of OpenStack.

There are many great sessions, workshops, and evening events happening at the summit this coming week, but three in particular that I want to highlight.

OpenStack Board of Directors Meeting

Did you know that, since OpenStack is an open community, the OpenStack Foundation board meeting is open for members to attend and listen in to the discussion? It’s great for members to have this level of access , so take advantage of the openness built into the OpenStack community, and take a listen.

While there are some portions of the meeting that will be a closed session (rightly so), most of the meeting you’ll hear about progress in specific initiatives, comments on new members to the community, and hear back on future directions.

It’s a great experience that more of our members need to participate in, so I highly recommend it to members. You can check out the planned agenda and WebEx details here.

 

OpenStack Ops Meetup

I mentioned the OpenStack operator community in my last blog (“Renewing Focus on Bringing OpenStack to the Masses”), and how I feel strongly about championing the cause of the operators out there.

While many of us are focused on code design, quality, new projects, etc, the operators are tasked with implementing Openstack.  This involves the day-to-day effort of running OpenStack clouds, which include readying IT environments for OpenStack deployments, first hand implementation of the project, the ongoing maintenance and upgrade aspects of the cluster, and being driven by a specific business goal they will be measured by.

At this Summit, the Operators will be hosting an Ops Meetup to get into the meat of OpenStack Ops. Now this stands to be an intense, down-in-the weeds discussion – not for the faint of heart! 🙂  So if you are among the many tasked with getting OpenStack operational in your environment, head on over and get to know your peers in this space, swap stories of what works well, share best practices, and make connections you can stay in touch with for years to come.

Learn more about the Ops Meetup here.

Certified OpenStack Administrator (COA)

Are you aware that you can now be CERTIFIED as an OpenStack Admin?

The COA is an exam you can take to prove your ability to solve problems using both command line and graphical interfaces OpenStack, demonstrating that you have mastered a number of skills required to operate the solution.

At OpenStack Summit, there are a few COA activities occurring that you should be aware of:

  • COA 101. Anne Bertucio and Heidi Bretz of the OpenStack Foundation will be hosting a 30min beginner-level session on the topic of COA, touching on the why / what / how relating to the COA exam.  (More info here.)
  • COA booth. The Foundation Lounge at the Summit will feature an area dedicated to learning more about the COA.  A variety of OpenStack community volunteers will be pitching in to answer questions, find trainings, and even sign up for the COA.  I plan on helping out on Wednesday right after the morning keynotes, so stop by and let’s chat COA.
  • COA exams.  If you’re ready now to take the exam, head on over to https://www.openstack.org/coa/ and get the details on when you can take the exam.  The world needs Certified OpenStack Admins!

(PS – If you need help with some prep, SUSE’s happy to help there – click here to get details on COA training from SUSE.)

I’m looking forward to a great week of re-connecting with a number of you I haven’t seen in some time, so if you’re out at Barcelona, look me up – I’d love to hear what OpenStack project you’re working on, or learn about how you are implementing OpenStack, or where I can help with places OpenStack can further help you in your business objectives.

See you in Barcelona!

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

Living Large: The Challenge of Storing Video, Graphics, and other “LARGE Data”

August 25, 2016 Leave a comment

.

UPDATE SEP 2, 2016: SUSE has released a brand new customer case study on OrchardPark_SUSEEnterpriseStorage“large data” featuring New York’s Orchard Park Police Department, focused on video storage.  Read the full story here!

————–

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for SUSE, originally published at the SUSE Blog Site.

Everyone’s talking about “big data” – I’m even hearing about “small data” – but those of you who deal in video, audio, and graphics are in the throes of a new challenge:  large data.

Big Data vs Large Data

It’s 2016 – we’ve all heard about big data in some capacity – generally speaking, it is truckloads of data points from various sources, magnanimous in its volume (LOTS of individual pieces of data), its velocity (the speed at which that data is generated), and its variety (both structured and unstructured data types).  Open source projects like Hadoop have been enabling a generation of analytics work on big data.

So what in the world am I referring to when I say “large data?”

For comparison, while “big data” is a significant number of individual data that is of “normal” size, I’m defining “large data” as an individual piece of data that is massive in its size. Large data, generally, is not required to have real-time or fast access, and is often unstructured in its form (ie. doesn’t conform to the parameters of relational databases).

Some examples of large data:

LargeDataChart1

 

Why Traditional Storage Has Trouble with Large Data

So why not just throw this into our legacy storage appliances?

Traditional storage solutions (much of what is in most datacenters today) is great at handling standard data.  Meaning, data that is:

  • average / normal in individual data size
  • structured and fits nicely in a relational database
  • when totaled up, doesn’t exceed ~400TB or so in total space

Unfortunately, none of this works for large data.  Large data, due to its size, can consume traditional storage appliances VERY rapidly.  And, since traditional storage was developed when data was thought of in smaller terms (megabytes and gigabytes), large data on traditional storage can bring about performance / SLA impacts.

So when it comes to large data, traditional storage ends up being consumed too rapidly, forcing us to consider adding expensive traditional storage appliances to accommodate.

“Overall cost, performance concerns, complexity and inability to support innovation are the top four frustrations with current storage systems.” – SUSE, Software Defined Storage Research Findings (Aug 2016)

Object Storage Tames Large Data

Object storage, as a technology, is designed to handle storage of large, unstructured data from the ground up.  And since it was built on scalable cloud principles, it can scale to terabytes, petabytes, exabytes, and theoretically beyond.

When you introduce open source to the equation of object storage software, the economics of the whole solution become even better. And since scale-out, open source object storage is essentially software running on commodity servers with local drives, the object storage should scale without issue – as more capacity is needed, you just add more servers.

When it comes to large data – data that is unstructured and individually large, such as video, audio, and graphics – SUSE Enterprise Storage provides the open, scalable, cost-effective, and performant storage experience you need.

SUSE Enterprise Storage – Using Object Storage to Tame Large Data

Here’s how:

  • It is designed from the ground-up to tackle large data.  The Ceph project, which is core of SUSE Enterprise Storage, is built on a foundation of RADOS (Reliable Autonomic Distributed Object Store), and leverages the CRUSH algorithm to scale data across whatever size cluster you have available, without performance hits.
  • It provides a frequent and rapid innovation pace. It is 100% open source, which means you have the power of the Ceph community to drive innovation, like erasure coding.  SUSE gives these advantages to their customers by providing a full updated release every six months, while other Ceph vendors give customers large data features only as part of a once-a-year release.
  • It offers pricing that works for large data. Many object storage vendors, both commercial and open source, choose to charge you based on how much data you store.  The price to store 50TB of large data is different than the price to store 100TB of large data, and there is a different price if you want to store 400TB of large data – even if all that data stays on one server!  SUSE chooses to provide their customers “per node” pricing – you pay subscription only as servers are added.  And when you use storage dense servers, like the HPE Apollo 4000 storage servers, you get tremendous value.

 

Why wait?  It’s time to kick off a conversation with your SUSE rep on how SUSE Enterprise Storage can help you with your large data storage needs.  You can also click here to learn more.

Until next time,

JOSEPH

@jbgeorge

Tech in Real Life: Content Delivery Networks, Big Data Servers and Object Storage

April 6, 2015 Leave a comment

.

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for HP, originally published at hp.nu/Lg3KF.

In a joint blog authored with theCube’s John Furrier and Scality’s Leo Leung, we pointed out some of the unique characteristics of data that make it act and look like a vector.

At that time, I promised we’d delve into specific customer uses for data and emerging data technologies – so let’s begin with our friends in the telecommunications and media industries, specifically around the topic of content distribution.

But let’s start at a familiar point for many of us…

If you’re like most people, when it comes to TV, movies, and video content, you’re an avid (sometimes binge-watching) fan of video streaming and video on-demand.  More and more people are opting to view content via streaming technologies.  In fact, a growing number of broadcast shows are viewed on mobile and streaming devices, as are a number of live events, such as this year’s NCAA basketball tournament via streaming devices.

These are fascinating data points to ponder, but think about what goes on behind them.

How does all this video content get stored, managed, and streamed?

Suffice it to say, telecom and media companies around the world are addressing this exact challenge with content delivery networks (CDN).  There are a variety of interesting technologies out there to help develop CDNs, and one interesting new technology to enable this is object storage, especially when it comes to petabytes of data.

Here’s how object storage helps when it comes to streaming content.

  • With streaming content comes a LOT of data.  Managing and moving that data is a key area to address, and object storage handles it well.  It allows telecom and media companies to effectively manage many petabytes of content with ease – many IT options lack that ability to scale.  Features in object storage like replication and erasure coding allow users to break large volumes of data into bite size chunks, and disperse it over several different server nodes, and often times, several different geographic locations.  As data is needed, it is rapidly re-compiled and distributed as needed.
  • Raise your hand if you absolutely love to wait for your video content to load.  (Silence.)  The fact is, no one likes to see the status bar slowly creeping along, while you’re waiting for zombies, your futbol club, or the next big singing sensation to show up on the screen.  Because object storage technologies are able to support super high bandwidth and millions of HTTP requests per minute, any customer looking to distribute media is able to allow their customers access to content with superior performance metrics.  It has a lot to do with the network, but also with the software managing the data behind the network, and object storage fits the bill.

These are just two of the considerations, and there are many others, but object storage becomes an interesting technology to consider if you’re looking to get content or media online, especially if you are in the telecom or media space.

Want a real life example? Check out how our customer RTL II, a European based television station, addressed their video streaming challenge with object storage.  It’s all detaile here in this case study – “RTL II shifts video archive into hyperscale with HP and Scality.”  Using HP ProLiant SL4540 big data servers and object storage software from HP partner Scality, RTL II was able to boost their video transfer speeds by 10x

Webinar this week! If this is a space you could use more education on, Scality and HP will be hosting a couple of webinars this week, specifically around object storage and content delivery networks.  If you’re looking for more on this, be sure to join us – here are the details:

Session 1 (Time-friendly for European and APJ audiences)

  • Who:  HP’s big data strategist, Sanjeet Singh, and Scality VP, Leo Leung
  • Date:  Wed, Apr 8, 2015
  • Time:  3pm Central Europe Summer / 8am Central US
  • Registration Link

Session 2 (Time-friendly for North American audiences)

  • Who:  HP Director, Joseph George, and Scality VP, Leo Leung
  • Date:  Wed, Apr 8, 2015
  • Time: 10am Pacific US / 12 noon Central US
  • Registration Link

And as always, for any questions at all, you can always send us an email at BigDataEcosystem@hp.com or visit us at www.hp.com/go/ProLiant/BigDataServer.

And now off to relax and watch some TV – via streaming video of course!

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

Recognizing the Layers of Critical Insight That Data Offers

March 11, 2015 Leave a comment

This is a joint blog I did with John Furrier of SiliconAngle / theCube and Leo Leung from Scality, originally published at http://bit.ly/1E6nQuR 

Data is an interesting concept.

During a recent CrowdChat a number of us started talking about server based storage, big data, etc., and the topic quickly developed into a forum on data and its inherent qualities. The discussion led us to realize that data actually has a number of attributes that clearly define it – similar to how a vector has both a direction and magnitude.

Several of the attributes we uncovered as we delved into this notion of data as a vector include:

  • Data Gravity: This was a concept developed by my friend, Dave McCrory, a few years ago, and it is a burgeoning area of study today.  The idea is that as data is accumulated, additional services and applications are attracted to this data – similar to how a planet’s gravitational pull attracts objects to it.   An example would be the number 10.  If you the “years old” context is “attracted” to that original data point, it adds a certain meaning to it.  If the “who” context is applied to a dog vs. a human being, it takes on additional meaning.
  • Relative Location with Similar Data:  You could argue that this is related to data gravity, but I see it as more of a poignant a point that bears calling out.  At a Hadoop World conference many years ago, I heard Tim O’Reilly make the comment that our data is most meaningful when it’s around other data.   A good example of this is medical data.  Health information of a single individual (one person) may lead to some insights, but when placed together with data from a members of a family, co-workers on a job location, or the citizens of a town, you are able to draw meaningful conclusions.  When grouped with other data, individual pieces of data take on more meaning.
  • Time:  This came up when someone posed the question “does anyone delete data anymore?”   With the storage costs at scale becoming more and more affordable, we concluded that there is no longer an economic need to delete data (though there may be regulatory reasons to do so).   Then came the question of determining what data was not valuable enough to keep, which led to the epiphany that data that might be viewed as not valuable today, may become significantly valuable tomorrow.  Medical information is a good example here as well – capturing the data that certain individuals in the 1800’s were plagued with a specific medical condition may not seem meaningful at the time, until you’ve tracked data on specific descendants of his family being plagued by similar ills over the next few centuries.   It is difficult to quantify the value of specific data at the time of its creation.

Data as a vector.jpg

In discussing this with my colleagues, it became very clear how early we are in the evolution of data / big data / software defined storage.  With so many angles yet to be discussed and discovered, the possibilities are endless.

This is why it is critical that you start your own journey to salvage the critical insights your data offers.  It can help you drive efficiency in product development, it can help you better serve you constituents, and it can help you solve seemingly unsolvable problems.   Technologies like object storage, cloud based storage, Hadoop, and more are allowing us to learn from our data in ways we couldn’t imagine 10 years ago.

And there’s a lot happening today – it’s not science fiction.  In fact, we are seeing customers implement these technologies and make a turn for the better – figuring out how to treat more patients, enabling student researchers to share data across geographic boundaries, moving media companies to stream content across the web, and allowing financial institutions to detect fraud when it happens.  Though the technologies may be considered “emerging,” the results are very, very real.

Over the next few months, we’ll discuss specific examples of how customers are making this work in their environments, tips on implementing these innovative technologies, some unique innovations that we’ve developed in both server hardware and open source software, and maybe even some best practices that we’ve developed after deploying so many of these big data solutions.

Stay tuned.

Until next time,

Joseph George – @jbgeorge

Director, HP Servers

Leo Leung – @lleung

VP, Scality

John Furrier – @furrier

Founder of SiliconANGLE Media

Cohost of @theCUBE

CEO of CrowdChat

The HP Big Data Reference Architecture: It’s Worth Taking a Closer Look…

January 27, 2015 Leave a comment

This is a duplicate of the blog I’ve authored on the HP blog site at http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Hyperscale-Computing-Blog/The-HP-Big-Data-Reference-Architecture-It-s-Worth-Taking-a/ba-p/179502#.VMfTrrHnb4Z

I recently posted a blog on the value that purpose-built products and solutions bring to the table, specifically around the HP ProLiant SL4540 and how it really steps up your game when it comes to big data, object storage, and other server based storage instances.

Last month, at the Discover event in Barcelona, we announced the revolutionary HP Big Data Reference Architecture – a major step forward in how we, as a community of users, do Hadoop and big data – and it is a stellar example of how purpose-built solutions can revolutionize how you accelerate IT technology, like big data.   We’re proud that HP is leading the way in driving this new model of innovation, with the support and partnership of the leading voices in Hadoop today.

Here’s the quick version on what the HP Big Data Reference Architecture is all about:

Think about all the Hadoop clusters you’ve implemented in your environment – they could be pilot or production clusters, hosted by developer or business teams, and hosting a variety of applications.  If you’re following standard Hadoop guidance, each instance is most likely a set of general purpose server nodes with local storage.

For example, your IT group may be running a 10 node Hadoop pilot on servers with local drives, your marketing team may have a 25 node Hadoop production cluster monitoring social media on similar servers with local drives, and perhaps similar for the web team tracking logs, the support team tracking customer cases, and sales projecting pipeline – each with their own set of compute + local storage instances.

There’s nothing wrong with that set up – It’s the standard configuration that most people use.  And it works well.

However….

Just imagine if we made a few tweaks to that architecture.

  • What if we replaced the good-enough general purpose nodes, and replaced them with purpose-built nodes?
    • For compute, what if we used HP Moonshot, which is purpose-built for maximum compute density and  price performance?
    • For storage, what if we used HP ProLiant SL4540, which is purpose-built for dense storage capacity, able to get over 3PB of capacity in a single rack?
  • What if we took all the individual silos of storage, and aggregated them into a single volume using the purpose-built SL4540?  This way all the individual compute nodes would be pinging a single volume of storage.
  • And what if we ensured we were using some of the newer high speed Ethernet networking to interconnect the nodes?

Well, we did.

And the results are astounding.

While there is a very apparent cost benefit and easier management, there is a surprising bump in performance in terms of read and write. 

It was a surprise to us in the labs, but we have validated it in a variety of test cases.  It works, and it’s a big deal.

And Hadoop industry leaders agree.

“Apache Hadoop is evolving and it is important that the user and developer communities are included in how the IT infrastructure landscape is changing.  As the leader in driving innovation of the Hadoop platform across the industry, Cloudera is working with and across the technology industry to enable organizations to derive business value from all of their data.  We continue to extend our partnership with HP to provide our customers with an array of platform options for their enterprise data hub deployments.  Customers today can choose to run Cloudera on several HP solutions, including the ultra-dense HP Moonshot, purpose-built HP ProLiant SL4540, and work-horse HP Proliant DL servers.  Together, Cloudera and HP are collaborating on enabling customers to run Cloudera on the HP Big Data architecture, which will provide even more choice to organizations and allow them the flexibility to deploy an enterprise data hub on both traditional and newer infrastructure solutions.” – Tim Stevens, VP Business and Corporate Development, Cloudera

“We are pleased to work closely with HP to enable our joint customers’ journey towards their data lake with the HP Big Data Architecture. Through joint engineering with HP and our work within the Apache Hadoop community, HP customers will be able to take advantage of the latest innovations from the Hadoop community and the additional infrastructure flexibility and optimization of the HP Big Data Architecture.” – Mitch Ferguson, VP Corporate Business Development, Hortonworks

And this is just a sample of what HP is doing to think about “what’s next” when it comes to your IT architecture, Hadoop, and broader big data.  There’s more that we’re working on to make your IT run better, and to lead the communities to improved experience with data.

If you’re just now considering a Hadoop implementation or if you’re deep into your journey with Hadoop, you really need to check into this, so here’s what you can do:

  • my pal, Greg Battas posted on the new architecture and goes technically deep into it, so give his blog a read to learn more about the details.
  • Hortonworks has also weighed in with their own blog.

If you’d like to learn more, you can check out the new published reference architectures that follow this design featuring HP Moonshot and ProLiant SL4540:

If you’re looking for even more information, reach out to your HP rep and mention the HP Big Data Reference Architecture.  They can connect you with the right folks to have a deeper conversation on what’s new and innovative with HP, Hadoop, and big data. And, the fun is just getting started – stay tuned for more!

Until next time,

JOSEPH

@jbgeorge