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HCI as a Service Boosts Business Agility

HCI, hyperconverged infrastructure

Like their peers across the globe, Latin American companies are increasingly interested in adopting a hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) for their data centers. HCI simplifies IT management, allowing administrators to pursue new initiatives instead of constantly assessing and upgrading expensive equipment. Organizations become more agile while spending less on hardware and lowering their cost of ownership.

HCI works by virtualizing storage, compute, and networking, and uniting them on a single platform. Once the system is up and running, scaling and adding new features is much easier than doing so in traditional data centers.

But shifting to HCI is challenging in Latin America, where budgets are often tight, internet connections are spotty, and service providers don’t always offer the kind of help companies need. Using HCI as a Service (HCIaaS) allows companies to avoid dealing with these issues and concentrate on ways to excel and grow.

Turnkey HCIaaS

Obtaining HCI capabilities from a single provider that tailors the solution to company needs and provides overarching support is a good choice for many organizations—especially in Central and South America. “HCI as a Service is ideal for companies in Latin America that want to use a cloud-based platform but need personalized service,” says Queberth Soto, chief technology officer of Adistec, a technology distributor that delivers data center and security solutions to companies throughout Latin America.

A provider that handles all aspects of HCI removes the management burden from businesses. Because HCI is a mixed solution of hardware, software, and networking components, troubleshooting problems on a non-HCI converged infrastructure can be tricky.

“If your switches are from Cisco, your servers are from Dell, and your storage is from HP, when there’s a problem, you may need to open three support cases. With our HCIaaS, you only need to make one phone call to us,” Soto says.

Adistec determines the cause of any problems, and deals with the appropriate manufacturers, sometimes sending them logs and other information in formats unfamiliar to client IT teams. It also provides clients support in three languages—Spanish, Portuguese, and English—often from the same support engineers and service representatives they have been working with for years to build and grow their data centers.

To help clients with internet connectivity, Adistec has built data centers for its HCI solutions in Sao Paulo, Lima, Buenos Aires, and other cities where its customers operate. “In some Latin America countries, there’s a potential risk of bad internet connection. With our in-country clouds, companies get more seamless connectivity and greater speed,” Soto says. The company also works with local ISPs to give companies competitive connectivity pricing for service.

As more organizations seek to upgrade their #DataCenters and expand, many will turn to the ease and simplicity of a managed #HCI system like @Adistec’s. via @insightdottech

Lower Costs with VMware HCI

Consolidating data center services with HCI can save companies a significant amount of money – a benefit that is music to the ears of many companies, including those that do business abroad.

Such was the case for Tier4 Services, a Costa Rica-based data center and network management provider serving companies in both Latin America and in far-flung locations, including Egypt, the Netherlands, and South Africa.

Rather than building expensive data centers of its own, Tier4 uses the services of a third-party provider. That solution seemed economical at first, but as the company scaled, it was unable to tailor its services for customers, and its data center expenses soared. Seeking a more agile platform, Tier4 transitioned to Adistec’s vSAN HCI (Video 1). As a result, it now pays for just one cage in the data center, instead of four.

Video 1. Tier4 benefits from a customized, turnkey HCI as a Service solution. (Source: Adistec)

Such experiences are not uncommon. A Forrester study found that VMware-based HCI reduces the use of data center space by 50% and saves more than $800,000 on power consumption, cooling, and maintenance support costs. By making management simpler, VMware HCI also allows IT teams to be more productive. Total VMware HCI benefits can reach $6.5 million over five years, according to the study.

Partnerships Promise Success

To build its personalized HCI solutions, Adistec talks with clients about current compute and storage needs and future plans, creating an HCI architecture that fits each company like a glove—perfectly suited to current needs, but capable of easy expansion.

Deploying hardware based on Intel® technology gives Adistec an important advantage because other vendors fail to provide the same level of customization. “It’s like buying a server from a supermarket,” Soto says. “But we can build something wonderful with Intel because we optimize required resources—disk, memory, and network—for the same price you would get from another vendor.”

The company’s designs are pre-validated and pre-certified by Intel-VMware before installation to make sure Adistec delivers the right architecture to fit customer needs. Intel servers also enable built-in predictive maintenance capability, sending email alerts about looming problems to the Adistec support team, which can replace some damaged parts before breakdowns even occur.

For the software side of its HCI solution, Adistec partners with VMware. Since many Latin American companies already use VMware virtual infrastructure in their data centers, transitioning to VMware’s vSAN HCI is fast and simple. “IT administrators just click to deploy it,” Soto says. Once vSAN HCI is installed, they can use familiar VMware tools to manage their data center infrastructure from a single pane of glass.

“Working together with Intel in the Latin American market allows us to consolidate our leadership in hyperconvergence and brings us closer to first-rate technology directly from the manufacturer, allowing us to offer turnkey solutions available to everyone,” says Micaela Saccone, Adistec Integrated Solutions Brand Manager.

As more organizations seek to upgrade their data centers and expand, many will turn to the ease and simplicity of a managed HCI system like Adistec’s, Soto believes. “Companies can grow their environment using one solution that is hardware- and cloud-agnostic,” he says. “HCI as a Service is the future here.”