Enabling The Green and Virtual Data Center

Greg Schulz

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Part V Dell Technology World 2018 Server Converged Announcement Details

Part V Dell Technology World 2018 Server Converged Announcement Details

Part V Dell Technology World 2018 Server Converged Announcement Details

This is Part V Dell Technology World 2018 Server Converged Announcement Details that is part of a five-post series (view part I here, part II here, part III here and part IV here). Last week (April 30-May 3) I traveled to Las Vegas Nevada (LAS) to attend Dell Technology World 2018 (e.g., DTW 2018) as a guest of Dell (that is a disclosure btw).

What was announced:

  • PowerEdge gen 14 four-socket rack mount servers
  • Preview of PowerMX Gen-Z enabled composable data infrastructure resources
  • Converged Infrastructure (CI) and Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) updates
  • Wyse 5070 Thin Client and other VDI related updates
  • VMware and NSX Cloud Updates

PowerEdge Servers Updates

PowerEdge servers enhanced with generation 14 technologies initially announced last May at Dell EMC World 2017, along with Intel July 2017 technology announcements. New PowerEdge R940xa and PowerEdge R840 are designed to support AI, ML, DL along with other analytics-related demanding workloads. In addition to new PowerEdge R940xa and PowerEdge R840 models, Dell Technologies also announced Dell Precision Optimizer 5.0 with enhanced ML algorithms to intelligently tune performance while boosting productive of Dell Precision workstations.

PowerEdge Rack Servers – New PowerEdge R940xa and R840 gen 14 servers. Dell announced two new four-socket servers that are part of the 14th generation of Dell PowerEdge server portfolio initially announced at Dell EMC World 2017 leveraging new Intel Xeon Scalable processors. These new four-socket servers support up to 112 combined cores (e.g., 4 x 28), along with 6TB of DDR4 memory as well as Non-Volatile DIMM (NVDIMM) options. Other standard features include NVMe drives for high performance, low-latency flash, and other emerging SSD or SCM media.

Dell PowerEdge R840

The Dell PowerEdge R840 2U rack server, features up to 26 2.5” HDD or SSD (24 in front, two in rear bays), of which up to 24 can be NVMe U.2 small form factor (SFF) drive form factor SSD devices. Other storage options include a mix of SAS/SATA HDDs and SSDs, as well as NVMe SSDs. Also supported are up to 48 DIMM DDR4 (RDIMM or LRDIMM up to 2666MT) slots, 12 of which can be for NVDIMMs enabling up to 6TB of memory.

Networking options for the R840 include 4 x 1 GbE, 4 x 10GbE, 2 x 10GbE + 2 x 1GbE, or 2 x 25GbE. Other options include support for two double wide graphics processing units (GPU) or two Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA) for data-intensive computations. Other R840 features include integrated Intel ultra-path interconnect (UPI), smart adaptive cooling, secure instance erase of HDD and SSD devices, along with Dell OpenManager enterprise management software, as well as agent less iDRAC (Integrated Dell Remote Access Controller) for automated server management. View additional Dell PowerEdge R940xa speeds, feeds, slots and watts specifications here (PDF).

Dell PowerEdge R940xa

The Dell PowerEdge R940xa  rack server has the same CPU and memory configuration as the R840 however in a larger 4U package. The larger packaging of the R940xa enables 12 PCIe Gen3 slots (six x16 or two x16 and ten x8), dual M.2 boot devices, network options (4 x 1 GbE, 4 x 10GbE, 2 x 10GbE + 2 x 1Gbe or 2 x 25GbE). Other components include up to 32 x 2.5” SAS/SATA HDD and SSD, and four direct-attached NVMe devices, as well as four double-wide GPUs or 8 FPGAs. With the additional resources, the R940xa is designed for accelerating databases along with other onsite high-performance workloads combines up to four CPUs along with GPUs or FPGAs. View additional Dell PowerEdge R940xa speeds, feeds, slots and watts specifications here (PDF).

Converged and Hyper-Converged

Dell Technologies has enhanced its Converged Infrastructure (CI) as well as Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) portfolio with gen 14 servers, GPUs, NVMe along with 25 GbE networking. In addition to VxBlock solutions incorporating PowerMax, XtremIO X2 along with mid-range Dell Technologies storage, VxRail as well as VxRack updates were announced in support of VMware vSAN among other items.

Thin Clients and VDI

New Dell Wyse 5070 thin client workstation for on-site or cloud-based applications. Dell EMC VDI solutions leverage PowerEdge 14th generation servers including VxRail and vSAN ready nodes, as well as incorporate NVIDIA Quadro virtual data center workstation (vDWS) and Tesla P40 GPUs. In addition to Wyse thin clients, Dell has also enhanced OptiPlex PCs.

VMware NSX and Cloud

In addition to the recent April SDDC cloud foundation and March Cloud announcements, VMware also announced NSX software-defined networking enhancements. The VMware NSX updates include NSX Cloud support for applications running in Microsoft Azure cloud, Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN) via its Velo cloud acquisition, along with NSX for container cloud-native and bare metal applications, along with Telco/Network Function Virtualization (NFV) updates.

Introducing PowerEdge MX Composable Infrastructure (the other CI)

Dell announced at Dell Technology World 2018 a preview of the new PowerEdge MX family of data infrastructure resource servers. PowerEdge MX is being developed to meet the needs of resource-centric data infrastructures that require scalability, as well as performance availability, capacity, economic (PACE) characteristics flexibility for diverse workloads. Read more about Dell PowerEdge MX, Gen-Z and composable infrastructures (the other CI) here.

Where to learn more

Learn more about Dell Technology World 2018 and related topics via the following links:

Additional learning experiences along with common questions (and answers), as well as tips can be found in Software Defined Data Infrastructure Essentials book.

Software Defined Data Infrastructure Essentials Book SDDC

What this all means

Dell is moving to converge not only technologies, tools, management of their technologies, as well as the data infrastructures of their client customers; they are also doing the same for their organization. We have seen the combination of Dell and EMC into Dell EMC and now into Dell Technologies. What was also noticed is the reinforcement of the Dell Technologies family or what in the past was referred to post-merger (or acquisition) as the EMC Federation.

Dell Technology World 2018 Party Walk The Moon and Sting
Dell Technology World 2018 Party with Walk The Moon before main act Sting

Dell Technologies World 2018 in some ways was a proof point of where the company is as well as how they have progressed in the twenty-some months since the integration of Dell and EMC. While there are still signs, messaging, naming and vestiges of the former EMC, along with EMCworld, make no mistake, this is a Dell Technologies event. From desktops to datacenters, Dell Technologies is showing its technology breadth as well as product lineup.

There were some questions from the press not answered such as what is going on with Dells financial organizational restructure, which as Michael Dell told the attendees, read the SEC 13D documents ( here, here and here) if you have not, as all the answers that Dell (Michael Dell and Dell Technologies) can talk about are there.

Here are some additional perspectives of what Dell Technologies may or may not due concerning business restructuring:

Via SearchStorage: Dell EMC storage strategy talk buzzes Dell Tech World
Via SearchStorage: Dell EMC storage IPO, VMware merger plans still unclear

Leaving Las Vegas and Dell Technology World 2018
Leaving Las Vegas and Dell Technology World 2018

Overall Dell Technology World 2018 was a good event, and I look forward to hearing more from Dell in the weeks as well as months ahead as they roll out more of what was discussed (or previewed) last week.

Ok, nuff said, for now.

Cheers Gs

Greg Schulz - Microsoft MVP Cloud and Data Center Management, VMware vExpert 2010-2018. Author of Software Defined Data Infrastructure Essentials (CRC Press), as well as Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press), Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier) and twitter @storageio. Courteous comments are welcome for consideration. First published on https://storageioblog.com any reproduction in whole, in part, with changes to content, without source attribution under title or without permission is forbidden.

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2018 Server StorageIO and UnlimitedIO. All Rights Reserved. StorageIO is a registered Trade Mark (TM) of Server StorageIO.

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Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at www.storageioblog.com and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.