If you are planning to deploy the compute and storage features into your data center, you have two noted alternatives. One is to tread the converged path and the other is to go by the hyper-converged way. Both these are proven choices of infrastructure which comes with their innate benefits and limitations.
With the advent of server virtualization, the backdrop of IT infrastructure registered a major overhaul. This was because of the prime fact that virtualization came with a promise to deliver a much more integrated infrastructure. This change prompted the evolution of the two models of infrastructure that we are currently discussing and their striking differences.
If you are looking to understand the differences between these two infrastructure models, you can study these two models in detail under their respective heads.
As the name suggests, a converged infrastructure essentially deals with the delivery of networking, storage and server hardware. All these are packaged as a single rack which is pre-tested and certified by the supplier. That means, all these different products concerning infrastructure are effectively packaged as a single product and sold as a single piece.
Now, to understand this system closely, let us view the benefits of this procedure which can be enjoyed by the customer.
- Technical Benefits
Technically speaking, this system thrusts a great deal of involvement from the supplier. The onus is on the supplier to check whether all the components are working together in perfect harmony. The supplier (partner) is entrusted with a responsibility to validate all the updates before launching the product to the end-user market. Employing a management software, it is on the strength of this software that the partner will be able to deliver a harmonious composition of the various hardware components and virtual machines (VMs).
- Operational Incentives
The customer will be happy to get a single product which is completed authenticated by its supplier. If you are looking to sign up for the offerings of converged infrastructure, you will be in a comfortable position to make the most of the single point of contact. You just need to contact your supplier for any queries and you are all covered. This way, you can deliver systems meant for specific business needs through the use of virtual desktops and email services. And all these can come with a cost cutting that is of major consequence to you.
- No Room for “Blame Game”
From multiple hardware components that can lead to an infrastructural failure, you have the convenience of error-tracking with just one single component. It makes it a breeze to track the fault in one component. This feature is instrumental in offering robust and complex infrastructure deployments. This way, a single support contract with your supplier can help you hold him responsible for any omissions or commissions.
- The Two Styles of Converged Infrastructure
You have the luxury of choosing between the two styles of converged infrastructure. The first one is a product stack which you receive as a single product shipment. Reference architecture is the second style that categorically mentions all the platforms that were pre-tested by your supplier and are authenticated to work in unison. This style bestows you a purchasing freedom when you can zero-in on a specific product that can be purchased along with a strong and validated supplier support mechanism.
Let us now shift our focus to learning about Hyper-Converged Infrastructure; the second part of our topic.
To be one step ahead of converged infrastructure is the promise that is kept up by the Hyper-Converged Infrastructure model. So you can expect a little more than what converged infrastructure has in store for you by signing up for a hyper-converged infrastructure contract. Along with the storage and hardware features that are packaged as a single product, Hyper-converged infrastructure comes embedded with the features of server virtualization. All these are packed as a single hardware product that you can make the most of.
Here are the obvious benefits offered by Hyper-converged infrastructure:
- Going by the mere definition, you must have understood that hyper-converged infrastructure is a perfect solution for operational and managerial issues concerning datacenters. You can effortlessly simplify your storage requirements when you can integrate them into the node.
- Ease of deployment comes as the second benefit of hyper-converged infrastructure. With the addition of nodes, you will be able to carry out deployment activities with a simple “plug in and move on” act. This procedure does not call for strenuous configuration activities as well.
- Speaking of the budgetary benefits, a hyper-converged infrastructure comes with a promise to deliver scalability when you can add nodes one at a time. This can be a huge incentive to entrepreneurs who are heading small and medium-sized enterprises.
When and Why to Choose a Particular Infrastructure Option?
By now, you must be clear that both these options are meant to simplify your hardware deployment activities. However, it makes sense to chalk out the difference between these two options based on practical situations. So, here they come!
Situations Demanding Converged Infrastructure
- Larger applications like SAP installations and Microsoft Exchange can be tagged well to converged infrastructure since this system promises higher scalability options.
- If you are majorly concerned about the ill-effects of device failure to the performance of applications, then it is best to tread the path of converged infrastructure. By choosing this option, you can make the most of the available storage, relying on the predictive failure that can help you meticulously replace a damaged disk.
- With converged infrastructure, you are at liberty to expand your data center to any scale without bothering about the threshold of expansion. That means, this option comes as a top choice for enterprises which thrive on dedicated and partitioned resources. It is through converged infrastructure that such companies can exercise better control over their hardware configuration.
Conditions Which Prompt the Use of Hyper-Converged Infrastructure
- As mentioned earlier, a hyper-converged infrastructure essentially relies on node-based recovery. This paves way to generate more network traffic from storage rebuilds.
- If you are looking to implement small-scale deployments that need smaller virtual machine requirements that will increase with time, then it is best to sign up for a hyper-converged infrastructure contract. You can effortlessly add the compute and storage resources in a clustered configuration.
- All those small-scale organizations that do not demand dedicated storage and networking skills can do wonders with hyper-converged infrastructure.
Wrapping It Up
With these two options that simplify your hardware deployment activities now available, it is only after you arrive at your deployment requirements that you can pick and choose a befitting option. Looking at the conditions enlisted above, you can check out those constraints and match them against your requirements to make an appropriate choice.