SAP HANA and EMC Technology: Architecting for the Future

Debajit2By Debajit Banerjee — Technical Architect SAP, SAP HANA, Big Data Solutions, EMC IT

A few months ago, EMC IT successfully migrated its mission-critical, SAP Business Warehouse (BW) from an Oracle database to SAP HANA, an in-memory, relational database management system that offers several benefits over our existing system.

Not only is SAP HANA providing us with speed and efficiency needed to meet today’s growing demand for real-time business analytics, it is also allowing us to showcase how several EMC technologies can be leveraged in combination with HANA to create a contemporary IT architecture.

EMC implemented an SAP-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system in 2012, to replace its decades-old, Oracle-based ERP system. However, since SAP HANA was still very new and developing at that time, we waited more than a year to migrate our Business Warehouse database from Oracle to a now-evolved SAP HANA-based system. In the meantime, our data volume grew and our business reporting process to analyze and report on key data was slow and not so efficient.

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Architecting the Cloud with Vblock: New Data Center Shows Value

By Stephen Doherty, Principal IT Project Manager

There are big IT projects at every company and in everyone’s career.  I was fortunate enough to be a part of the largest IT infrastructure project in EMC’s history.  Simple, open a datacenter, migrate all of the applications, close a data center.

One of our Massachusetts data centers had served EMC and Data General well for decades.  However, we were constrained by power, cooling and space.  It was also far too close to our other data center to protect EMC from a regional disaster like Hurricane Sandy.  EMC selected Durham, North Carolina to build out a new 20,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art data center.

First mover advantage

We’ve written a lot about our Durham Cloud Data Center in the past. We purchased the Durham site in October 2009 and planned to close the near-capacity Massachusetts data center by December 31, 2012.  If the migration took longer, we estimated that it would cost EMC millions of dollars in 2013 to extend the lease and staff, power, cool and insure the facility.  Three years, no problem—except the Durham facility was a warehouse, not a data center.  The facility remodel wouldn’t be ready until October 2010, giving us eight quarters to migrate more than 2,500 servers and 500 applications and a ninth quarter to decommission the Westborough facility.

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Another Progress Report on EMC IT’s Journey To The Private Cloud

Reposted from Chuck Hollis’s blog entry on 5/7/2010:

By now, you’re probably aware that our IT organization is in the process of pivoting from a traditional IT model to one where they look like an internal service provider — using IT infrastructure that’s built differently, operated differently and consumed differently.

Our IT organization is no different than many others. EMC is a global, diverse and fast-moving technology company. We want our IT to be better, faster and cheaper just like everyone else.

But they’ve got a special challenge …they’re part of an extremely aggressive IT infrastructure company: EMC. Continue reading

To Vblock, Or Not To Vblock

I recently had a conversation with Paul Divittorio, EMC IT’s Director of Enterprise Systems and Application Hosting Architecture. He’s the guy responsible for designing the next generation hosting platforms being installed in our production data centers here at EMC. When Paul is talking with EMC customers about our IT organization’s journey to Private Cloud, he’s often asked about Vblock. Where does EMC IT think it makes sense to use it? Where is EMC IT using it now? Continue reading

Getting More For Less By Virtualizing Oracle

My EMC colleagues and I often advise IT leaders to begin their own Private Cloud journey by virtualizing everything. That includes “Tier One” applications. When IT people hear “Tier One,” a few brands immediately pop into our heads. When I describe how EMC’s internal IT organization is aggressively building a Private Cloud, I’m not surprised when asked, “What about Oracle?” Continue reading

Why EMC IT Is Going “All In” On Private Clouds – Part 5

This is the final part of a series of posts outlining how our IT organization started its aggressive journey to private clouds. Previously, I described IT’s strategy shift, the trigger for its urgency, navigating through “cloud fog,” and the unusual path IT decided upon.

In this post, we’ll take a look at EMC IT’s overall strategy for actually making this journey. Continue reading

Why EMC IT Is Going “All In” On Private Clouds – Part 4

This is the fourth of a multi-part series exploring why our IT organization is aggressively transforming EMC’s corporate datacenters into Private Clouds. Previously, I described IT’s strategy shift, its newfound sense of urgency, and navigation through some “cloud fog.”

In this post we look at the unusual course EMC IT charted for its Private Cloud journey, and how the team approached selling its plan to our top execs. Continue reading

Integrating RSA Security in EMC’s Private Cloud

Join Nirav Mehta, Senior Manager of Product Management at RSA, as he describes RSA’s view on virtualization security and how EMC’s security division is participating in EMC IT’s Journey to the Private Cloud. It includes some examples, such as ways EMC IT is using RSA technology to secure virtualized desktops.

David Freund also provided some background in this post.

Security: Don’t Leave (Physical) Home Without It

A lot of ink has been spilled recently in the press about cloud security, and even virtualized-server security. Many lead off with alarming headlines like this recent example that declares, “60% of virtual servers less secure than physical machines, Gartner says.”

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Why EMC IT Is Going “All In” On Private Clouds – Part 3

This is the third installment of a multi-part series exploring why our IT organization is so aggressively transforming EMC’s own datacenters into Private Clouds. In earlier posts, I described how our IT strategy shift began, and what gave our senior IT folks a newfound sense of urgency.

In this post, we look at how EMC IT decided how to handle the “cloud issue.”

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Why EMC IT Is Going “All In” On Private Clouds – Part 2

This is the second of a multi-part series exploring why our IT organization is so aggressively transforming EMC’s own datacenters into Private Clouds. In Part 1, I describe how our IT group’s strategy shift began. Despite what you might think, it wasn’t driven by technology.

In this part, we look at what happened to cause our senior IT leaders to second-guess their strategy.

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Why EMC IT Is Going “All In” On Private Clouds

Few people are surprised when they hear our IT organization at EMC has embraced Private Clouds. After all, it’s easy to embrace a vision. It’s another to actually pursue it. But when folks learn how aggressively EMC IT is transforming our current datacenters into a private cloud, I often get reactions along the lines of, “Wow. Eating the food you’re selling to the rest of us. Great move.”

After this sinks in a bit more, I’m often asked: “Wait a minute. How did you manage to make that happen?” One assumption underlying this question is that we’re willing to bet more than merely EMC’s IT-vendor business on Private Cloud. We’re willing to bet our business operations on it.

That’s true enough. We are.

Another frequent assumption is that EMC is haughtily taking operational risks to meet a technology or marketing goal. That one badly misses the mark.

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The [R]evolution Will Be Virtualized

Here’s a phrase you’ve undoubtedly heard far too often: “A major shift in Information Technology is coming.” Most of the time, it’s used merely to introduce some vendor’s new product or technology. It’s also been used to hail the coming of cloud computing and, more recently, private clouds. Cloud proponents—EMC included—love drawing analogies to previous technology waves that transformed business IT.

But let’s be clear about the driving force behind those waves. It was not technology. Each wave hit our shores when new ways were found to address a common and persistent problem: businesses’ need to develop and run applications more quickly and more flexibly than possible using then-conventional means.

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Chronicling EMC IT’s Private Cloud Journey

We at EMC have been talking about private clouds from the perspective of an IT vendor for quite some time. But EMC is also an IT consumer. Our IT organization supports over 40,000 internal users in 61 countries (and 20 languages), and many hundreds of business applications on over 6,000 server instances spanning five data centers worldwide. Never mind the thousands of terabytes of storage, tens of thousands of devices, and hundreds of thousands of network ports used to conduct business every day.

It comes as no surprise, then, to be asked: “is EMC’s IT organization doing this?” when discussing private clouds with enterprise customers. My answer: “of course.” That’s not hubris. EMC IT began its journey a few years ago. The evolution in EMC IT’s thinking and plans—leveraging virtualization as a technology building block, then taking it to the next level—reflects the evolution in thinking and plans that led us to our vision of private clouds and the VCE coalition.

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Server Virtualization Consolidation Part 2

Listen as Adam Wagner, EMC Systems Architect focusing on VMware and Linux, details our internal implementation challenges and gain insights into how EMC IT has overcome these challenges and are developing new best practices to achieve a 40:1 virtualization consolidation ratio.
For more detailed information on how EMC has reduced internal IT costs click here to access ESG’s Lab Audit Report on EMC IT.

Server Virtualization Consolidation

Learn how EMC IT saves 13 Million in cost avoidance and 10 Million in cost savings over the course of 5 years.
Join Paul Divittorio, EMC IT’s Director of IT Enterprise Systems and Application Hosting Architecture, as he introduces EMC’s strategy to aggressively move to a 40:1 server virtualization ratio and save 10 Million of the course of 5 years.

EMC IT’s Journey to the Private Cloud

Interested in learning what EMC IT is doing with virtualization? Join us each month as EMC IT documents its own virtualization journey. Join Sanjay Mirchandani, EMC Senior Vice President and CIO, as he introduces this exclusive, inside-look at EMC’s virtualization status from challenges faced through improvements made to future plans. This documentary series focuses on five key initiatives:
• Server virtualization
• Optimized storage and networks for a virtual environment
• Closed looped automated configuration management and monitoring
• Cloud
The series is an ideal venue for customers and prospects to follow and learn best practices directly from EMC IT.