Evolution of Monitoring

Having started my IT Career in the 80’s, I’ve had a front row seat to the ever-evolving landscape that makes up IT Infrastructure. In the days of centralized systems, with Dumb Terminals, monitoring and managing systems was simple relative to today’s environments. As distributed computing made its way into the data center and across desktops, monitoring and management became far more challenging. Troubleshooting, software/hardware upgrades, and deployment often means visiting each desktop in the organization.

As centralized and distributed infrastructures began to converge over time, we never got back to the simplicity of centralized systems. We saw day-to-day monitoring and management improve with centralized software distribution and updates, remote desktop access, centralized alerts and notifications, etc. However, the management solutions that evolved to support a world in which Hypervisors, co-location, and multi-site infrastructures rule, have themselves become large, complex, infrastructures to deploy and maintain. Today, managing the IT Infrastructure means dealing with a multitude of device managers and monitoring tools across a siloed environment of storage, compute, network switches, and firewalls.

 

Simplify the Monitor Experience

Our IT Infrastructures are becoming more diverse and geographically distributed than ever before. It’s no surprise that we are now starting to see solutions that simplify the Monitoring and Management experience. These solutions are going to be mandatory as IT Infrastructure continues its evolution to a hybrid, compute anywhere landscape.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise has embraced the idea of managing and monitoring a compute anywhere environment. They have underscored their commitment based on tools like InfoSight. They have recently announced new solutions in the spring of 2021. To get to the point where they are now, there were many HPE developed technologies and hardware/software acquisitions along the way.

One of their most visible and telling acquisitions was Nimble Storage. While the Nimble Storage technology has been a solid solution by itself, we were told from the start that HPE really purchased Nimble because of its InfoSight AI/predictive analytics platform.

 

HPE InfoSight

In 2017, InfoSight was a tool used to monitor and report on Nimble storage arrays from anywhere you could access a browser. But, at the time, Nimble was the only device included. Today, HPE InfoSight has expanded its use cases. Most all HPE Storage and Compute as well as the virtualized environments are supported by InfoSight.

InfoSight uses cloud-based machine learning to build Global Intelligence and insights for IT Infrastructure. The platform simplifies IT operations by predicting and preventing problems across the infrastructure stack. It makes decisions that optimize application performance and resource planning. This intelligence is based on telemetry data from many of HPE’s global installed base. I can personally attest to the power and usefulness of InfoSight. It has helped many of our clients troubleshoot issues and plan for expansion using the information provided through HPE InfoSight.

HPE continues to grow the capabilities of HPE InfoSight predictive analytics and monitoring across their compute and storage solutions. They have also been working on tools to improve the deployment, provisioning, and management of those solutions. Starting in April of 2021, HPE has made announcements for solutions built on a cloud-native architecture. It manages infrastructure components through a SaaS-based control plane that abstracts infrastructure control from the physical infrastructure.

 

Aruba ESP

In April, HPE announced The Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform), designed to address fragmented network operations and simplify the network management lifecycle. ESP converges the management of wired, wireless, and WAN networks across campus, branch, remote worker, and data center locations. It will be no surprise, to those who have managed Aruba environments, that the Unified Infrastructure announced with ESP is based on Aruba Central, a cloud-native, microservices-based platform that has been part of the Aruba portfolio for some time.

With the inclusion of ESP, Aruba Central provides a full range of management services for the network.
To continue the theme of SaaS management solutions, in May, HPE announced their Data Services Cloud Console. Data Services Cloud Console is based on the Aruba Edge Services Platform. Because Data Services Cloud Console is delivered as SaaS, there is no software to deploy, manage, or maintain. You can constantly stay current on the latest software features, without any action or involvement required.

 

New Solutions

Data Services Cloud Console (DSCC) is a subscription service integrated with the new Alletra platform and will also support Primera and Gen 5 Nimble Arrays. It is deploys, provisions, and monitors supported storage arrays through role based access controls. DSCC delivers global unified management. It enables customers to manage and monitor geographically distributed systems across edge to cloud from a single web interface. So, managing hundreds of systems is as simple as managing one.

 

 

In June 2021, HPE announced an expansion of the Cloud Console with its Compute Cloud Console solution. Like ESP and DSCC, Compute Cloud Console is another part of the SaaS platform that will allow you to manage your Compute environments from anywhere and wherever they are across your infrastructure.

Hybrid infrastructure is here to stay. It is essential that we find ways to deploy, manage, and monitor  infrastructure without proliferating the siloed tool sets and manual processes that have become common in geographically limited environments. Since our infrastructure is geographically dispersed, it is likely that those who manage that infrastructure will also be spread across, the country, and around the globe. So, role-based, self-service deployment, management and monitoring should also be part of how we plan to support our IT Infrastructure.

With InfoSight, Edge Services Platform on Aruba Central, Data Services Cloud Console and Compute Cloud Console, HPE has provided a suite of tools that will support our journey to the next evolution of the IT Infrastructure landscape.

Contact Zunesis to find out more about the solutions discussed throughout this blog.

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