Tuesday 24 April 2012

PureSystems - Flex or Fantasy?

So, IBM have discovered integrated systems with the recent announcement of PureSystems. Link is here if you have a life an not noticed the marketing. If you believe all the hype IBM has had such a real Niel Armstrong moment that IT will never be the same again. So I thought I would take an alternative view to what all this means.

There are a number of sites that have reviewed the announcement. One of my favorites is this in The Data Center Journal by Greg Shulz. I especially love the bulls buzzword bingo wordle! Another good one in the awesome El Reg is here. So I will leave it to you to review the official information and some of the industry commentators and make up your own minds as to what it all really means to you.

To summarize, (and just to be accurate for all the blue bloods out there, this is my personal interpretation and thoughts) an IBM PureSystem is a factory integrated data and compute infrastructure in a cabinet combing cloud, virtualization, servers, data and storage networking capabilities.
The IBM PureFlex system is comprised of various IBM and products and technologies (hardware, software and services) optimized with management across physical and virtual resources (servers, storage (V7000), networking, operating systems, hypervisors and tools).

The IBM PureApplication system builds and on PureFlex systems as a foundation for deploying various software stacks to deliver traditional IT applications, PaaS, SaaS or AaaS along with suitable buzzwords of elastic, scalable, repeatable, self-service, rapid provisioning, resilient, multi tenant and secure among others.


So what makes these different from HP or EMC etc? According to the marketing it is "Built in Expertise", "Integration by Design" and a "Simplified Experience". According to the video messages on the launch site, customers find it easy to write applications but find it really hard and expensive to deploy, run and manage them and the answer to this is IBM PureSystems. 

An alternative view is that IBM has spent the last decades charging customers billions of dollars in services doing what a PureSystem will help them do for a couple of hundred thousand dollars of hardware. An interesting compare to what the real cost of these systems will be. I wonder what the TCO will be when installation, software licenses and support are factored in ? Talking of support, as there is a total reliance on ISV applications what is the reality of a support call going to be .... hardware it's not us, it's software, software it's not us it's the application ... you get the idea.

Built in Expertise - read, customize and run these scripts to get what you thought you were buying from the factory. 

Integration by Design - read, someone managed to get a single PID on the price list.

Simplified Experience - read, it's easier to get your cash for compute and storage resources in one go.


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