News in brief: HP’s new Odyssey

HP unifies Unix and x86 architectures with its newly announced computing project roadmap, Odyssey; VMware releases its first vSphere 5 patch, fixing a bug that produced long boot times in iSCSI virtual machines; other news in brief

In what appears to be an effort to gain some face after all the recent missteps, HP announced a new mission-critical computing project roadmap dubbed “Odyssey” last week. The project unifies Unix and x86 server architectures with a roadmap that includes ongoing improvements to HP Integrity servers, NonStop systems, and HP-UX and OpenVMS operating systems. HP will also include Intel Xeon processors for HP Superdome 2 enclosure (DragonHawk) and c-Class blade enclosures (HydraLynx). 

HP says the 32-socket DragonHawk system answers user requests for HP-UX reliability on x86 servers. With it, users can run mission-critical workloads using HP-UX on Intel Itanium®-based blades while also running Microsoft Windows or Red Hat Enterprise Linux on Intel Xeon-based blades in the same Superdome 2 enclosure.

vSphere 5 patch for iSCSI bug released
VMware has released its first patch for vSphere 5. The patch fixes a bug that was causing long boot times for virtual machines attached to iSCSI storage systems.

According to VMware Knowledge Base documentation, the problem occurs “because ESXi 5.0 attempts to connect to all configured or known targets from all configured software iSCSI portals. If a connection fails, ESXi 5.0 retries the connection nine times. This can lead to a lengthy iSCSI discovery process, which increases the amount of time it takes to boot an ESXi 5.0 host.” In some cases the bug led to boot times of up to 90 minutes.

New Citrix Channel Chief outlines focus areas
New Citrix Americas Channel Chief, Mike Fouts introduced himself to the Citrix channel in his inaugural blog post on Monday. He is taking over for Craig Stilwell, who is stepping aside after eight years in the position. Stilwell has moved to VP of sales in the Southeast United States, the position Fouts is moving from.

In the blog post, Fouts outlined three areas of focus in 2012. The first is providing partners with new tools and information to assist them in sales success in Citrix’s virtualization solutions. The second is to increase the alignment of channel partners and internal sales teams. The last is to increase sales efforts focused on SMBs, amplifying the attention to this market with the SMB Specialist channel program announced at the Citrix Summit in October.

VDI solution for Windows 7 migrations offered by Desktone
Desktop as a service provider (DaaS), specialist Desktone is promoting its virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) to companies looking to migrate to Windows 7. The company is also pitching its solutions to managed service providers (MSPs), cloud integrators and telecom companies.

Desktone CEO Peter McKay recently spoke to Brian and Gabe LIVE, answering questions about the company’s technology and VDI outlook. (The podcast is also interesting as Brian, Gabe and Jack delve into Citrix’s Kaviza purchase and channel strategy and get into VDI strategies.) Desktone recently partnered with VMware to offer its DaaS solution in the cloud, and is using that capability to promote its DaaS service ahead of other companies joining the DaaS fray.

F5 Networks offers solution to long-distance vMotion live migration headache
Working with VMware and storage vendor NetApp, F5 has proposed a solution to the long-distance vMotion problem that combines its BIG-IP load balancing and wide area network (WAN) optimization products with NetApp FlexCache. The approach eliminates roadblocks to performing long-distance live migration. 

The technology can be useful for disaster avoidance, data center migrations, consolidation projects in the wake of mergers and acquisitions, and even capacity planning. But there are still obstacles, including IT perceptions, and physics.

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