Dell EMC First to Qualify External Enterprise Storage Arrays for VMware Cloud Foundation

As digital transformation initiatives become pervasive across every industry, organizations are often turning to cloud solutions to help increase business agility. In fact, over 93% of companies are deploying their workloads across two or more clouds, which can create IT complexity arising from multiple operational silos and disparate management and orchestration tools. VMware Cloud Foundation can help address this complexity by providing a consistent operations experience across clouds (both public and private). Not surprisingly, VMware Cloud Foundation is becoming an increasingly important part of our customers’ IT infrastructure and operations strategy. With that in mind, I am extremely pleased to announce that Dell EMC has qualified the interoperability of Dell EMC PowerMax and Dell EMC Unity external storage arrays with VMware Cloud Foundation. Dell EMC continues to lead the way being the first vendor to qualify external storage solution for VMware Cloud Foundation.

Enterprise Storage meets Cloud Operating Model

VMware Cloud Foundation provides the simplest path to consistent cloud operations through an integrated software platform that is the foundation for both private and public cloud environments. With this announcement, customers can now combine the benefits of VMware Cloud Foundation with Dell EMC storage, which has been the backbone of most companies’ high value mission-critical workloads for the better part of the last three decades. VMware Cloud Foundation now delivers improved flexibility supporting new storage classes – both NFS and Fibre Channel (FC) – with Dell EMC Storage solutions (in addition to VMware vSAN, which is included in VMware Cloud Foundation).

This jointly qualified solution offers the following benefits:

  • Reduce TCO: Leverage existing Dell EMC storage investments and skill sets along with the agility of software-defined services for compute, network and security available in VMware Cloud Foundation
  • Provide independent storage scaling: Offer greater flexibility for scaling storage independent of compute to meet varied application workloads demands, e.g. transactional application workloads demanding very high IO density solutions
  • Extend the reach of VMware Cloud Foundation: Embrace specific application use cases that rely on unique external storage-specific functionality (e.g. high availability enterprise storage architectures, Machine Learning-based service levels, advanced snapshot and data reduction capabilities etc.) that isn’t available within Cloud Foundation today.

Customers have the flexibility to set up different workload domains managed by VMware Cloud Foundation. One workload domain could utilize Dell EMC Unity (NFS and FC support from a single storage system) as its storage platform, supporting moderately scalable application use cases such as Microsoft SQL Server, SharePoint, Exchange etc. Yet another workload domain could be set up to utilize Dell EMC PowerMax as the storage platform, supporting mixed workload consolidations of several demanding applications. The management domain will continue to be powered by VMware vSAN.

The qualification of Dell EMC Unity and PowerMax for VMware Cloud Foundation is an important milestone in VMware and Dell EMC’s long history of collaboration, dating back to VMware’s early days. Today, Dell EMC Storage not only integrates with core storage enablement primitives offered by VMware but also supports VVols and VASA for the next-generation VMware environments enabling finer control at the VM-level, streamlining storage operations and offering policy-based management to facilitate the cloud operating model on-prem. It also offers additional integrations via Virtual Storage Integrator (VSI) plug-ins to ensure a complete integrated user experience across the VMware and Dell EMC platforms.

Next Steps

For further information, check out this white paper as well as contact your Dell EMC or VMware sales teams to learn more.