In Conversation with Aruba's Larry Lunetta at Atmosphere 2018 (Video)

I recently attended the Aruba Atmosphere conference. As my blog and the ESG On Location Video report from the event (that I did with my colleague Bob Laliberte) both cover, this was definitely a cross between a tribal event and a family reunion, wrapped in the feel (but not the purpose) of a sales kick-off! Bob’s blog from the event does a good job of suggesting how broad the range of coverage and announcements was. That said, vendors in IT can often continue to be perceived by their initial offerings rather than their complete abilities. In that light I sat down to chat with Larry Lunetta, the VP of marketing for the security side of Aruba.

Topics: Storage Aruba Aruba Atmosphere Larry Lunetta

In Conversation with IBM's Eric Herzog at Think 2018 (Video)

At IBM’s recent Think conference I grabbed the chance to spend a few minutes with Eric Herzog; his title is as long as his shirts are colorful, but basically he runs all storage marketing for IBM.

Eric is one of the most infectiously enthusiastic execs in the industry, and it means a lot can be packed into the six minute video interview. While the main topics are storage-focused, the conversation was broader, as clearly IBM recognizes the value of integrated offerings....not only because that’s what users increasingly want these days, but also because - conveniently! - IBM is one of very few vendors that can deliver a wide range of integrated solutions off of its own shelves.

Topics: IBM Storage IBM Think Eric Herzog

In Conversation with IBM's Ed Walsh at Think 2018 (Video)

At the recent IBM Think conference I managed to find some time to sit down with Ed Walsh, the GM of the storage division at Big Blue. As one of the company’s senior revenue-production-responsible executives, this 8 minute interview provides not just some crisp commentary on the division he runs but also some fascinating insights into the contemporary approach to business at IBM.

Topics: Storage IBM Think Ed Walsh

Thoughts Ahead of Dell Technologies World (Video)

It's just a couple of weeks before Dell Technologies World - DTW being another acronym for our industry to embrace. 

DTW is guaranteed to be big and impressive - with so many moving parts within Dell and so many thousands of customers, partners, and employees in one place, there's an inherent dynamism that drives the event itself....even before the Vegas production values and stage/expo scale kick in. But there are underlying big questions about the nature of both Dell's business and the nature of the market in which it competes that are also fascinating. I sat down with ESG's Founder, Steve Duplessie, to chew over what we're expecting, and what intrigues us about DTW. 

Topics: Storage Dell Technologies World

Mid-range vs. Enterprise Storage: Is Size All that Matters?

We often hear small and mid-sized organizations talking about how management constantly urges them to “do more with less.” Keeping competitive requires them to squeeze all they can out of their infrastructure, and their staff. ESG research bears this out; respondents chose cost reduction as one of the business initiatives that will drive the most technology spending at their organizations this year, appearing second on the list, only bested by strengthening cybersecurity.

Topics: Storage ESG Lab

Aruba Creates an Infectious (in the good sense!) Atmosphere -- includes video

I must say that any place where being an “airhead” is a good thing is probably going to get my attention! At Aruba’s Atmosphere event, the airheads (Aruba user-community members) are what it’s all about. It’s easy to dismiss such terminology as just an amusing collective name except for two simple facts: first, there’s a lot of them….tens of thousands globally with plenty of them milling around the Mandalay Bay; and second the flip side to such a name cannot obscure the “raving fan” aspect that seems to permeate this company and its culture. Yes, I’m well aware that most attendees were actually Aruba customers, but the event retained the feel of a sales kick off (you know, the “we’re all in this together” type of atmosphere).

Topics: Storage Aruba Aruba Atmosphere

THINK-ing about IBM (includes video)

The month of March in the US signifies its eponymous “Madness” (it’s big college basketball tournaments for those of you reading from places it does not reach); perhaps to give a nod to that, IBM did a few things to create its own madness at its “Think” event in Las Vegas. There was the frustration type of madness with the registration system for a unified-and-therefore-very-big event…there was the amusing type of madness from seeing IBM execs trying to look comfortable in jeans…and there was the messing-with-our-minds type of madness from seeing a truly cohesive story, and event, and wondering if it actually was dear old IBM that we were witnessing!

Topics: IBM Storage IBM Think

The Need for Speed and Automation: Enterprise Storage in 2018 (Video)

Recently, I was able to get some time in front of a camera to discuss my predictions for enterprise storage in 2018. The video is below, but let me provide a brief spoiler with two of the top highlights.

  • Flash continues its dominance with the rise of NVMe: I will talk more about NVMe as the year goes on, but in a nutshell NVMe unlocks the true potential of flash, and that potential is far more than just high performance.
Topics: Storage data storage cloud storage automation NVMe hyperconverged All-Flash Array 2018 Predictions

Making Infrastructure Less Visible Shines a Light on Other Issues

In my recent blog and video covering my predictions for infrastructure in 2018, I promised to return to the key themes, saying that I thought their simplicity could obfuscate their importance. So, here goes on adding a little more color to the first one.

The onward march from IT as infrastructure technology [back] to IT as information technology makes for memorable semantic fun…but it covers way more than that. Yes, it’s important to have IT focused on the overall delivery model, SLAs and – most important of all – the achievement of relevant business outcomes. However, the move of individual infrastructure elements somewhat out of the immediate spotlight and more into the (literal and figurative) IT shadows should never be interpreted as any lessening of the value associated with, or attributed to, these elements. Quite the reverse. As we increasingly rely on more integrated IT systems – convergence, cloud services, and software-defined being three common contemporary manifestations – so we inevitably also increasingly rely on those systems being “better.” In this context “better” does not necessarily mean things like price-performance – which remain nice-to-haves of course – but absolutely means things like reliability, ease of use, automation, and interoperability.

Topics: Storage IT Infrastructure

Kaminario Goes Software

There has been an understanding held by those inside the storage industry for some time now that enterprise storage is a software business. To those on the outside, though, it has looked like a hardware business. People see the mass of HDDs, SSDs, controllers, enclosures, power supplies, etc, and think "I am buying hardware." But inside the industry, vendors have known for decades that what separates the winners and the losers has long been the software.

Topics: Storage flash flash storage Kaminario All flash cloud software