Is an “Engineered” solution right for everyone?

The Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) sounds interesting, but what if I want to change something?  What if there’s something in the solution that I want to swap out, or modify in the design?  Can I do that?  Will it still be supported?  Great question that the EHC team is getting every day.

The answer lies in the fundamental drivers for what problems your organization is truly trying to solve, and balancing that with the choices that you have in how you want to implement your cloud.

Bottom Line:  If you want the EHC benefits of a rapid install, that’s been tested and validated into a very detailed and repeatable build guide, with ongoing support and a defined upgrade path, then the EHC program sounds like a good fit.

If you want to exercise choice and design something different, that’s OK too…it will just take longer, cost more, and won’t be as easily supported.  Let’s dig into that a bit.

What’s the value of an “Engineered” solution?

As we discussed HERE, EHC is an “Engineered” solution.  That means that EMC and VMware teams worked together to figure out exactly what versions of software from both organizations worked best together at a certain point in time.  That integration was further bolstered by workflows and other integration efforts that were again tested and validated to all work together.

Once that was done, the engineering team wrote and tested a very detailed and prescriptive build guide for the services teams and our partners to use to install the entire software stack.

What is EHC v2It’s this guide that enables the services team to implement the EHC solution in 28 days, to ensure that the solution is implemented properly so that it can be supported, and also to ensure that later upgrades and updates to the solution will be upgradeable.

As part of the build guide and public reference architecture documents, EMC also published a list of software versions that have been tested.  They’ll update that a few times a year and provide guidance to customers to ensure that they stay compatible across the software stack.

Ok…so what if that doesn’t work for me?

Not every customer is going to be a perfect fit to prescriptively follow the EHC Reference Architecture and Build Guide.  What are some examples where this just doesn’t work?

  • The current EHC build (2.5.1) doesn’t support vSphere 6
  • NSX and VCNS are the only virtual networking platforms supported
  • Your team wants to use vSAN rather than an EMC storage array

These are some examples of technical asks or requirements from customers that stray too far from the reference architecture.  It just means that all of the testing, validation, and integration work that EMC and VMware have done in building this solution isn’t “valid” for your configuration.

EMC Services, your partners, and even internal IT teams are more than capable to build a cloud based on a custom design.  These teams have never shied away from offering customers choice.  One new option, in the Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud, is the CHOICE to just get your cloud spun up the fastest and in the most reliable way.

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Want to learn more about the Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud and all the other cool things EMC is doing with cloud, check out http://www.emc.com/cloud.

-jim (@thesanzone)

Full Disclosure:  I work for EMC and am part of the Cloud Solutions Technical Marketing team.  Just trying to spread the word.