Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) updated its IT and hybrid cloud management software, OneView and OneSphere, with the latter now supporting Microsoft Azure. And at a swanky event at The Battery in San Francisco, company executives detailed how both products fit into its software-defined and cloud strategy as it works to position itself as a leader in next-generation software-defined compute, networking, and storage.
OneSphere is the company’s hybrid cloud management software-as-a-service (SaaS) announced late last year. It provides a single point to access workloads and compare costs across public clouds and on-premises private clouds. OneSphere works across virtual machines (VMs), containerized workloads, and bare-metal applications, and the original launch supported Amazon Web Services (AWS). Today, HPE added a second public cloud — Azure — and plans to add Google down the road.
OneView is HPE’s on-premises infrastructure management software. “It makes the infrastructure software-defined,” said Ric Lewis, senior vice president and general manager for HPE’s Software Defined and Cloud group. It now has 1 million licenses and saw 160 percent year-over-year grown during the company’s most recent earnings quarter, Lewis added.
The product’s new 4.1. release includes features that automate lifecycle management for VM farms and provide cloud-based support. It also now integrates with Microsoft Azure Log Analytics and VMware vRealize Orchestrator, which should help companies deploy workloads faster. Plus, new reference configurations for Chef automation and reference architecture for HPE Synergy with RedHat OpenShift Container Platform allows users to compose infrastructure and workloads in a few clicks.
Synergy is the company’s composable infrastructure product, which has 1,600 customers and is its fastest growing new technology category, Lewis said.
“[OneView] is also the heart and soul, the engine of composability,” Lewis said. “It provides the software-defined intelligence that makes it so we can deliver this [composable infrastructure] product category where we believe we’re two years ahead of the competition.”
That’s a dig at Dell EMC. Last month Dell EMC debuted products based on what it calls “kinetic infrastructure,” or fully composable infrastructure. HPE, which launched Synergy in 2015, says Dell EMC is three years late to the party.
Hyperconverged infrastructure — namely, the company’s SimpliVity HCI — is another piece in HPE’s software-defined story. Lewis said it has 2,900 customers and is growing 2.4-times faster than the rest of the HCI market.
“What Plexxi brings to the equation: SimpliVity has software-define storage, OneView is our overall composable manager, we needed something to help us do SDN in other form factors than Synergy,” Lewis said. “With the addition of Plexxi we can do composable and deliver that in a rack-form factor — all under OneView control.”
The Plexxi acquisition, originally slated to close by the end of July, is “well ahead of schedule,” he added. Once the deal closes, HPE plans to integrate Plexxi’s software-defined networking (SDN) fabric into its HCI and composable products.
And by the end of the year, Lewis pledged HPE will be “talking about a composable rack solution that we’ll deliver to the market that will be a market first.”
Hyperconverged vs. Composable
While there’s a place in enterprise data centers for both hyperconverged and composable infrastructure, customers are increasingly starting with HCI for its private cloud benefits, and then moving onto composable infrastructure, said McLeod Glass, VP and GM for HPE’s SimpliVity and Composable business.
“Composable takes it the next step with the ability to compose compute, storage and networking,” Glass said. “We see hyperconverged as a stepping stone toward infinitely composable infrastructure — composable across clouds — and really all of it’s driven by the ability to drive software-defined infrastructure with SimpliVity, HPE OneView, and HPE OneSphere. Soon Plexxi will be playing a big role in that as well.”
While HPE’s hyperconverged products focus on VMs, its composable infrastructure supports VMs, containers, and bare-metal based workloads. Despite this difference, Glass said he sees the line between HCI and composable blurring.
“As we extend composability across our infrastructure, you really won’t be able to tell the difference,” he said.
Editor’s Note: After this story posted HPE told SDxCentral that the Plexxi acquisition closed June 1.
Photo: Ric Lewis, SVP and GM for HPE’s Software Defined and Cloud group, outlines the company’s software-defined strategy.