Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Web-Scale Infrastructure by Nutanix


For last few weeks I was reading this term a lot on social media and kept wondering what exactly Web-Scale is. Nutanix has released their Hyper converged solution 3 years back to meet the needs of varying industries and which can match variety of requirements too which can range from SMB to Mid Size, or from Enterprise level to Federal customers. Their NX- range of solutions are available to meet varying range of requirements.

Their main components which build up as part of Webscale can be pointed out as follows.

Hyper Convergence on x86 nodes which allows you the Freedom to scale as required. One server at a time.

Now for the organization who has budget for certain department but if its growing then to keep up with the growth, it gives the ability to add the Nutanix Node (server) one at a time. Now this is giving you freedom of not doing a large investment at the same time but you can spread it over period of time in future years to come. Accounting wise and Business Management perspective this is very crucial as you are not stuck with the Investment and ROI aspects of it. Depreciation also counts at some point but Finance Dept. will be happy as they dont have the deal with this kind of situation.

Intelligence - this is provided by their Nutanix's own kernel developed which will run on individual node known as CVM and two CVMs always in connection with each other all the time using the backend network connection. Even if one CVM goes down due to the underlying hardware failure or some other reasons, still the functionality wont be affected in any of the features and operation served by the nodes.
Everything will keep functioning as they supposed to work.

Distributed Architecture - This is another plus point where all the infrastructure related information is stored in the distributed fashion across the Nutanix nodes and such information can contain mostly all the items including data, metadata, operations occurring between virtual machines etc. etc. this information is getting stored within whole cluster so if one component fails still there wont be any information loss. By having this feature you can easily plan ahead and make the infrastructure more scalable without even worrying about the limitation. This scalability gives you the possibility to plan appropriately without wasting resources and time (eventually it involves this factor as we need time to setup/implement and to maintain it later on too) which is very crucial for any organization from small to large size.

Self-healing System : Nodes are built up in such a way that the failures of the components are not becoming responsible for system crash or operational impact of production workload. Fault Isolation and Automatic Recovery allows this facility which keeps the nodes active and keep running the overall system.

API based automation and Analytics : These two features are the pillars where automation in place and if one is using any system monitoring to achieve any data-driven efficiency and REST based programmable interface for the Datacenter management. This is a big one as going forward you can use the feature when working with various cloud based systems which can be Private Cloud, Public Cloud or Hybrid Cloud.

Multi-application support :  On Nutanix Nodes you can run various type of applications working as part of VDI, Big Data, Private Cloud, Enterprise Branch Office etc. etc.

And the following is an extract I have taken from one of the post on Nutanix

  • Web-scale system enables a non-disruptive approach to disruptive tasks, such as rolling or forklift upgrades, expandable clusters, always-on clusters, and all workflows always done online. Examples of Nutanix scalability include ability of adding and removing nodes dynamically, rolling upgrades of one node at a time ( different nodes can be at different version during the rolling upgrade), datastore availability when there is a disk failure and many other features. Nutanix Engineering is adding more features to improve resiliency and simplify workflows.

This allows any IT admin a breath of Relax and upgrades are becoming critical where there are SLAs to achieve which can range from 9999 to 99999 sometimes. Without any disruption you can upgrade or add / scale the Infrastructure which is very valuable to the any type of Industry working 24x7x365.


The above diagram is about CAP theorem (Consistency, Availability and Partition Tolerance) and you can see the clear relationship between the various components and what Nutanix is offering is pretty much aligns with each of them. The diagram again is a courtesy by Nutanix blogpost.

Now finishing here with a pic of the very nice T-shirt received from Nutanix and as its a Wednesday today so it will be a perfect day to Web-Scale it. ;-)

Go and use the Hyper-Convergence with ease using the Web-Scale Infrastructure offered by Nutanix !!

Please share and care !!

Thanks for your time.

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