At Trustmarque XPO South 2019 we spoke to Lee Dilworth, Chief Technologist for Storage and Availability within VMware EMEA, about how VMware is supporting the next generation of applications.
What topics are VMware bringing to the table at XPO?
The purpose of being at XPO is to help customers understand what the VMware solutions are. For a lot of customers the challenge they’re facing isn’t necessarily product specific, it’s more about application management and application transformation. That can be scary for some customers as they are used to dealing with traditional known applications like SQL and Oracle and they need to now understand how they move into the next generation of applications.
What is VMware’s main area of focus right now?
VMware’s strategy has remained the same for the past 5 years. To deliver on a true hybrid cloud vision takes time. We’ve been working diligently in the background to bring a platform to market that can provide consistent infrastructure and operations, not only on-premise but for a multitude of cloud providers; AWS, Azure, IBM cloud and just recently we announced support for Oracle cloud. Right now, VMware is the only platform that gives customers the flexibility to any one of the six big clouds.
To do that takes time. But is testament to engineering effort and our research and development programme that we can deliver that to customers today.
What are the main challenges customers come to you with?
The most common challenge is overcoming the hurdle of moving from where they’ve come from as a traditional VMware customer to this second phase where they are now part of an infrastructure team who are facing all the cliched IT challenges; do more with less, less training, less time away from the office. At the same time they are facing an ever-increasing mix of applications, many of which they’ve never heard of. However, they’re still being asked to deliver enterprise level SLA’s like performance, maintenance, security, Backup, DR.
This is a challenge that everybody is wrestling with. Nobody is out there looking or a product, they are looking for help with solving that challenge. VMware has fundamentally built a platform to run all applications.
What do you think is driving the rise in Hyperconvergence?
Obviously, things like Opex and Capex are crucial, but fundamentally it is about agility and being able to provision a resource in the same way that you do with other resources. To cater for ever-changing applications, you need the same agility for networking resources and for storage resources which HCI provides. When you’re talking about deploying thousands of things that might be deployed every day, every hour and could be destroyed and stood back up again, you need a platform that can provide the resources dynamically but also have the same constraints around that provisioning model that you need for an enterprise-class deployment. That’s why HCI is one of the bedrocks of that architecture.
How have you found XPO?
It’s been a fantastic event. I’ve met customers from every stage of the journey. It’s one of the things I tried to get across in my session, that nobody is excluded from the journey. Whether you’re starting out now with a few modes and it’s your first HCI cluster, or you’re an existing customer moving into the hundreds or thousands of nodes and looking for different options of hybrid cloud. There are people from all walks of life and from all parts of that journey.
About Lee Dilworth
Lee Dilworth is the Chief Technologist for Storage and Availability within VMware EMEA. Specializing in Software-Defined storage and hyper-converged (HCI, vSAN) and converged infrastructure solutions, Lee works closely with both customers and partners to implement next-gen storage and availability solutions.
In a disruptive market and constantly changing business landscape, Lee is increasingly working with customers to ensure they have the best of both worlds – the freedom to choose and move applications across any cloud but also the control to manage risk, cost and security.
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By Katherine Murphy, content enthusiast