Today's spotlight is a year in review of Oracle's Virtual Compute Appliance and a look to the future.
Virtual Compute Appliance is a converged infrastructure solution that combines preconfigured networking, servers, and storage into a convenient package that system administrators can easily deploy into an existing data center. Combined with the virtualization power of Oracle VM, the Virtual Compute Appliance provides the perfect general-purpose solution for a wide range of applications and operating systems. Customers around the world are using Virtual Compute Appliance systems for their virtualized environment of mixed workloads or private cloud.
The most visible benefit of the Virtual Compute Appliance is rapid deployment. The Virtual Compute Appliance automatically configures compute, storage, and network resources when it is powered up, and users can start running virtual machines in a matter of hours. "Time-to-application with Oracle’s Virtual Compute
Appliance was remarkable. In a matter of minutes, not days or weeks, we were operational and in a position
to instantly respond to our customers’ needs,” said Raul Chico, head of business development, BT Spain.
View the complete story.
The Virtual Compute Appliance can be used with Oracle VM Templates, which provide pre-built virtual machines containing OS images and pre-installed application and database software. Together, they provide ready-to-run physical and virtual infrastructure, so customers can start running workloads in hours, not days or weeks. Secure-24, a managed services provider based in Michigan, United States, was able to deploy Oracle Database 12c within 10 minutes by using template. Watch the video here.
The Virtual Compute Appliance leverages wire-once Software Defined Networking (SDN) using Oracle Virtual Networking over an InfiniBand backplane and the Oracle ZFS Storage Appliance for robust, high performance networking and storage.
Since its release in 2013, the Virtual Compute Appliance has been updated with several product enhancements. Among the most notable are:
- Addition of X4-2 servers, providing investment protection for customers by supporting a mixture of X4-2 servers and X3-2 servers in the same rack.
- Support for external storage using either InfiniBand or Fibre Channel technology. Customers now have more options to expand storage to the Virtual Compute Appliance. Customers can now connect the Virtual Compute Appliance to their Fibre Channel storage (e.g. EMC, HDS, NetApp storage), in addition to their existing NFS or iSCSI storage. They can also expand storage of the Virtual Compute Appliance by connecting
to Oracle ZFS Storage Appliance externally, using InfiniBand.
- Management VLAN support: The VCA management network now supports the use of VLANs.
- Improved management capabilities, including an Integrated Command Line Interface: Several command line utilities are now consolidated into a single command line interface (CLI), which is accessible from the Oracle Linux shell on the management node. Customers can use the CLI to script actions that may need to be performed on a regular basis, or to write integration scripts for existing monitoring and maintenance software not directly hosted on the appliance.
- Synchronization Service to eliminate configuration mismatches: Throughout the life cycle of the Virtual
Compute Appliance, software updates, capacity extensions and configuration changes will occur at
different points in time. To eliminate configuration mismatches, we implemented a synchronization
service to allow configurable parameters to be set and maintained across different components
within the Virtual Compute Appliance.
At a live event on January 21, 2015, Larry Ellison announced the Virtual Compute Appliance X5, offering
highest performance at the lowest price.
Watch Larry's video or read the press release.
With this announcement, Oracle continues to provide further product enhancements to deliver more value for
customers purchasing the Virtual Compute Appliance.