Digital Transformation (DX) is the way in which businesses deal with the ever-expanding creation of data – stemming from phenomena such as social media, the internet of things, AI, big data and analytics. According to IDC, worldwide spending on digital transformation technologies will expand at a CAGR of 17.9% by 2021 to more than $2.1 trillion[1]. As clients look toward accelerating their digital transformation in order to sustain competitive advantage, they look to utilize the benefits of hybrid cloud and multi-cloud environments. But the successful response to the digital transformation happening in the industry today depends on many factors. One of them is the ability to architect solutions that can run across public and private cloud infrastructures in a way that provides the greatest flexibility and lowest risk to their businesses.

Clients today are seeking to transform their businesses to take advantage of hybrid cloud. But they are seeking to do so in ways that extends their current technology and helps solve the pain points of integration and interoperability with their existing IT environments. IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud software is positioned to help clients both extend their current technology to hybrid clouds and multi-clouds, as well as solve the integration/interoperability pain points.

First introduced in December 2017, IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud is software that can be deployed on public cloud Infrastructure to create enterprise class, virtualized, cloud block storage for applications (virtualized or physical) that are running in the public cloud. Through native capabilities featuring synchronous or asynchronous mirroring and IP –based replication (without additional gateways), clients can mirror their data and manage their data across private and public clouds. IBM Spectrum Virtualize on premises (offered today as software only, in IBM SAN Volume Controller—SVC—or in a number of IBM Storwize family, FlashSystem, and VersaStack solutions) can be used to not only manage data, but also act as a data services layer to send that data to a public cloud IaaS, initially supporting IBM Cloud.

Enhancements in Release 8.1.3

Now data management and storage virtualization capability on the public cloud (IBM Cloud) can be implemented in the same configuration as on premises, with the added support of up to 8 node Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud clusters. With this capability, the software is now enhanced to provide the same level of scalability that clients use today on premises, up to 8-node clusters, the same as in SVC, Storwize, FlashSystem, or VersaStack products.

Release 8.1.3 also improves write performance with IBM Cloud block storage infrastructure. The new capability extends more of the compute resources on cloud servers to IO, giving a 20-30% increase in write throughput. This improvement benefits clients using cloud for DR, which is primarily a write workload.

Use Case

The primary use case is disaster recovery using IP replication between on-premises storage arrays and an instance of IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud on IBM Cloud infrastructure, rented monthly. This approach allows clients to reduce their CAPEX and OPEX budgets by foregoing expensive secondary data center equipment, real-estate, and administration. Instead a smaller foot print of ‘pilot light’ cloud infrastructure can be used to house the most critical data needed in case of a disaster. New capabilities in IBM Cloud block storage allow clients to easily expand performance and capacity on demand, when a disaster strikes.

IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud enables real-time disaster recovery, data replication and migration between on-premises storage and the IBM Cloud, and also

    between IBM Cloud data centers

. Ability to scale to 8 Nodes in a Spectrum Virtualize cluster brings many benefits, notably among them the ability to scale I/O performance of shared storage to the applications.

Enterprises enjoy a common set of enterprise-class data services and features across all storage resources, on premises or in the cloud. With this common set of services, IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud helps clients bridge the interoperability and integration gap between on-premises data centers and the public cloud. By doing so, this also provides clients with a way to extend their current investments on premises to the public cloud, and with lower risk.

“Our clients are working more and more with multi-cloud storage deployments,” said Michael S. Adams, Director of Storage and Professional Service, Lighthouse Systems. “They are searching for more ways to leverage public cloud to complement their on-premises IBM Storwize systems. With IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud, they are able to use IBM Cloud as a flexible alternative for disaster recovery and have the benefit of consistent management for on-premises and cloud storage.”

Summary

Data is the lifeblood of enterprises. Companies are quickly shifting to a cloud-first strategy that must take into account the management, protection, and availability of data. According to IDC, “Organizations’ abilities to master a multicloud environment will be a key contributor to the company’s success or failure. The ability to integrate and manage multicloud environments will be a fundamental requirement for operating — not just as an IT group but as a business. Applications and users need to be able to interact with data in a platform-independent manner”.[2] IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud is a cross-platform, hybrid cloud solution that helps clients achieve their goals of a cloud first strategy, with enterprise-class reliability, scalability and data management.

Click here to learn more about IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud.

For complete information about the IBM Storage announcements on May 10, see our blog.

[1] IDC Press Release, Worldwide Spending on Digital Transformation Technologies to Reach $1.3 Trillion in 2018, December 2017, https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS43381817
[2] IDC, Worldwide Data Services for Hybrid Cloud Forecast, 2017–2021, September 2017, https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=US43004417

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