Looking to take data center automation to a higher level, Hitachi Data Systems this week launched a series of management tools that leverage Big Data analytics to automate IT operations.
The company also added more servers to its lineup while also extending the number of platforms supported by the Hitachi Storage Virtual Operating System.
Bob Madaio, senior director of product marketing at HDS, says the goal is to make it simpler for IT organizations to provide departments within their organization the ability to self-service their own IT requirements within a set of parameters defined by the internal IT organization.
The data center automation framework is based on technologies that HDS gained through the recent acquisitions of Avrio, oXya, Pantascene, and Pentaho.
Hitachi Live Insight for IT Operations enables IT organizations to analyze all the machine data in their data centers. Via a Big Data analytics application, Madaio says IT organizations can use Hitachi Live Insights for IT Operations to identify the root cause of any data center outage.
Hitachi Clinical Repository for Connected Health provides a similar set of Big Data analytics for medical systems. According to Madaio, healthcare is only one of several vertical industry segments that HDS will apply its core Big Data analytics against machine data.
Hitachi Live Insight Center of Excellence is a set of consulting services that HDS provides around Hitachi Live Insight for IT operations.
The new systems launched by HDS include the Hitachi Hyper Scale-Out Platform. Designed primarily to run Hadoop, this platform combines Hitachi file system technology with open source management and virtualization software. Designed to fit in a 2U rack, it is based on two Intel Xeon E5-2620 processors packaged around 192GB of memory.
HDS also made addition to the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform family of servers in the form of a hyper-converged Hitachi UCP 1000 for VMware EVO:RAIL software and the converged Hitachi UCP 2000. Both systems are rack servers aimed at small to medium businesses or remote or branch office environments.
Finally, HDS launched Hitachi Automation Director, an application that provides access to service templates for the provisioning of storage resources in various application-specific environments, and Hitachi Infrastructure Director, a storage configuration and management application that uses application programming interfaces from Hitachi VSP systems to automate storage management.
While many IT organizations have historically resisted data center automation, Madaio says most of them are coming to terms with the fact that IT environments can’t scale simply by continuing to throw administrators at the management problem. Madaio says IT administrators want to be able to govern those environments to prevent them from spinning beyond their control, while at the same time reducing the complexity of the overall data center environment.
Collectively, Madaio says the HDS IT automation tools are moving IT organizations much closer to creating software-defined IT infrastructure environments that finally enable IT to be managed as a true service.
“IT organizations are moving towards delivering IT as a service no matter how bumpy that road might be,” says Madaio. ““Some of the historic resistance to automation is starting to go away,”
Naturally, it remains to be seen to what degree IT organizations will allow the level of IT automation provided by any given vendor influence their ultimate infrastructure decision. But whatever path they decide to take increased reliance on IT automation is all but inevitable at this point.