Hyper-Converged Infrastructure and the MSP Advantage Explained 

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Hyper-Converged Infrastructure and the MSP Advantage Explained 

Optimizing the performance and capacity of data centers has its challenges when you utilize local infrastructure or on-premises technology. This is especially evident when using traditional virtualization methods, as they create resource allocations that are difficult to manage, complex, and not fully optimized.

Integrating Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) into your business offers numerous possibilities, enabling significant expansion in your organization’s functionalities. Let’s explore how HCI can greatly expand technological and organizational capabilities.

 

Unlocking Value: The Power of Managed Services in Business 

Managed services providers (MSPs) are typically sought after for their extensive knowledge and experience in technology. To remain competitive and maintain their edge, Managed Service Providers, like Strategic Systems, need to adapt and adjust their processes, technological infrastructure, and management practices.

According to Kearney, 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies outsource work to MSPs.¹ In 2019, Gartner revealed that 85 percent of leaders in the logistics field anticipated a rise in their outsourcing budget for the year 2020.² The worldwide market for managed services reached an approximate value of 279 billion US dollars in 2022, indicating that global managed services market is anticipated to exceed $400 billion by 2026.³

Companies globally recognize internal resource limitations in handling specific processes and business functions. MSPs play a vital role in ensuring efficient business operations and aiding companies in staying current with evolving market trends and industry regulations.

Moreover, HCI can align effectively with MSP services. This combination of technologies can significantly enhance business processes and maintain adaptability in response to changing market dynamics.

 

What Is Hyperconverged Infrastructure? 

Hyperconverged Infrastructure represents an IT framework that includes the virtualization of all hardware components in a conventional data center environment. This facilitates the centralized management of integrated infrastructure resources through a software-defined architecture.

Hyperconverged solutions are created to deliver economic and performance benefits to data centers. Through HCI, a private data center can function as a scalable, high-performance, dependable, and continuously accessible infrastructure, resembling the characteristics of a cloud environment.

 

What Makes HCI “Hyper”? 

The term “Hyper” in the name might be somewhat misleading. HCI doesn’t necessarily outperform converged infrastructure. However, for larger companies with a focus on virtual machines, HCI can provide:

  • Enhance effectiveness.
  • Eliminate downtime.
  • Simplify scalability.

 

Converged Infrastructure (CI) is an approach based on hardware. It streamlines data center management by consolidating various business processes using hardware components that function like building blocks. Each component can be detached and reverted to a more traditional model.

In contrast, HCI is “Hyper” due to its fully software-defined nature. In HCI, all technologies are seamlessly integrated, making it difficult to break them down into distinct components. Opting for the software-based approach in HCI may present difficulties in reverting to a more traditional model.

 

Is HCI More Effective Than a Standard CI? 

If HCI is perceived as superior to a standard converged infrastructure, it is typically due to these factors:

 

1. Simplified Configuration

In the traditional converged infrastructure, the underlying elements of the virtualized system come preconfigured, prepackaged, and bundled into a single virtualized system. These systems need reconfiguration, optimization, and protection to adjust to diverse operational requirements.

 

2. Effortless Management

CI primarily addresses purchase and upgrade cycles, leaving technical challenges unresolved. In contrast, HCI provides seamless management and integration of infrastructure components with minimal user intervention.

 

3. Improved Elasticity

Virtual machines enhance data center flexibility to adapt to varying business demands, protect data in fault-prone infrastructure operations, and ensure high availability of IT services.

 

4. Facilitated Multi-Vendor Approaches

HCI relies on virtualized software integration of computing, storage, and networking devices, potentially supported by various vendors. This makes it possible for your infrastructure to use a multi-cloud approach, having access to different cloud providers.

 

Benefits of Hyperconverged Infrastructure 

Here are the common benefits that organizations experience when transitioning to a Hyperconverged Infrastructure:

 

1. Lower Costs

Bringing components together on a single platform reduces the need for storage space, energy consumption, maintenance expenses, and the total cost of ownership. HCI also eliminates the need for overprovisioning to accommodate expansion and facilitate the scalability of data centers in small, manageable components.

 

2. Ease and Flexibility

HCI can be deployed faster than traditional IT infrastructure without requiring specialized IT professionals in each resource allocation. Additionally, automation streamlines management, giving staff and administrators more time to concentrate on strategic initiatives.

 

3. Performance

HCI allows organizations to handle different tasks efficiently while maintaining high performance. Many businesses rely on HCI for demanding workloads like enterprise applications and SQL Server.

 

4. Scalability with Flexibility

Hyperconverged Infrastructure easily adapts to scaling needs. You can effortlessly incorporate additional resources by connecting a new node to the cluster. In some Hyperconverged systems, the ability to scale, compute, and store independently is available. New resources are automatically detected and easily integrated into the cluster.

 

5. Support for Multiple Clouds

HCI greatly simplifies the management of hybrid cloud environments, reducing the time and costs of transitioning to such a setup. It also facilitates the smooth transfer of data and applications between on-premises servers and the public cloud.

 

6. Security and Data Protection

On-premises IT infrastructure is already a secured system. However, Hyperconverged Systems can incorporate more robust security measures into your local infrastructure, including self-encrypting drives and tools that offer extensive visibility. They also come with built-in capabilities for backup and disaster recovery.

 

When Is HCI Suitable? 

While it may function effectively in various scenarios, HCI stands out in certain cases. Here are some situations where choosing HCI could be a wise decision:

 

Virtualization

If you intend to virtualize your data center, HCI presents a good choice. The integration of computing and storage resources in HCI simplifies the installation and maintenance of virtual machines.

 

Branch or Remote Offices

HCI can be a suitable solution for businesses with branches or distant offices requiring IT infrastructure. Its compact, modular design makes deployment and administration more straightforward in smaller spaces.

 

Scaling-out

HCI might be a fitting option if you need to scale your infrastructure rapidly and efficiently. Marketed as compact, modular appliances, HCI allows employers to add more computing resources as needed.

 

Consolidation

Opting for HCI can be wise if your goal is to consolidate various data center resources into a single platform. Both computation and storage resources in HCI can reduce the need for separate infrastructure for each resource.

 

The Strategic Advantage of Managed Service Providers 

Still relying on your internal IT team to handle your systems? It might be time for a change and to take advantage of the rapid progress of technology. Organizations often find themselves relying on reactive rather than proactive solutions. In a digital age where businesses are constantly evolving, this can lead to difficulties in meeting the growing demands of a developing business.

When it comes to managing the complex infrastructure of HCI, businesses may assume that the task falls solely on their in-house IT team. However, just as with general network management, this isn’t the only option. Managed IT services or MSP extend their expertise to HCI, offering specialized support and service for this advanced technology.

MSP allows businesses to concentrate on their core activities while ensuring that their HCI environment is optimized and effectively managed. Using managed services with HCI not only brings benefits but also saves costs. This makes it a smart and efficient solution for businesses that want to tap into advanced infrastructure without putting too much strain on their own resources.

Related Article: Managed Services vs. In-House IT: Choosing the Best Path for Your Business 

 

Invest in Future-Proof Technology with Strategic System

At Strategic Systems, our collaboration involves closely partnering with you to develop cloud-native products or transition your current applications to the cloud, enhancing the availability, performance, and security of your applications.

Partner with us and revolutionize your IT capabilities through our managed services today.

 

References 

1. Sayner, Robert. “Launching the next Generation of Business Process Outsourcing.” Kearney, 3 Nov. 2019, www.kearney.com/launching-the-next-generation-of-business-process-outsourcing.

2. Hippold, Sarah. “Gartner Says 85% of Logistics Leaders Expect Their Outsourcing Budget to Increase in 2020.” Gartner, www.gartner.com/2019-12-12-gartner-says-85–of-logistics-leaders-expect-their-ou.

3. “Managed Services Market Size Worldwide 2019-2025.” Statista, 2014, www.statista.com/worldwide-managed-services-market-size.