Guest Blogger Series: Our Move to Hyperconvergence - Part 1/5

We are kicking off a new guest blogger series with one of our Scale Computing customers, David Roden. David is the Director of Technology at Goodell, DeVries, Leech & Dann, LLP. In a five-part blog series beginning today and then following for the next four weeks, David will be sharing his experience moving to Scale Computing HC3. Without further ado, here is David's first blog post in the series.

Beyond Virtualization: Our Move to Hyperconvergence Begins

We virtualized our first server in 2008. By 2011 we were operating a robust Hyper-V shop. When our firm expanded to Philadelphia, we opted for an IBM BladeCenter S. This gave us Hyper-V hosts, storage, remote management, and networking, all in one convenient package. This unit also served as a replication target for VMs from our Baltimore office. Seven years later, IBM is out of the blade business. The BladeCenter S has been a workhorse and has served us well, but the time has come to move on. Next stop: Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI). 

But which one? After a lengthy and detailed analysis of several available options, we selected Scale Computing’s HC3 system. As I mentioned, we are replacing the BladeCenter S in Philadelphia. In Baltimore we are also implementing HC3, replacing a BladeCenter H along with a few other physical servers.

The solution from Scale Computing provides the benefits of HCI you would expect, such as unified management of compute, storage, network and virtualization resources. The nature of HCI provides a level of high availability hardware protection we’ve not had previously. In our analysis, we found that, besides improved performance (our server hardware is at least 6 years old!) Scale Computing offered the right mix of features we were looking for. This includes: replication, failover/failback; hybrid storage with automatic hot & cold data management; simplified management; and reduced licensing costs. We found that not all of these were achievable in every HCI platform we considered. In a future post I will revisit our selection process in detail. 

The services, applications, and security requirements of our network continue to increase in complexity. For us, Scale offers the opportunity to simplify by eliminating the need for several existing tools, including SCVMM, a 3rd party VM backup and replication system, and an online backup service. This gives us reduced management complexity (which pleases the IT staff) and lower costs of operation (which is always popular with the partnership).  

More next time.