"It's all about the Cloud" with NetApp and ANS Group at CiscoLive London 2013



As CiscoLive 2013 comes to a close all I can say is what a show ! I don't think I have attended such a comprehensive event in all my career in IT,  and let me tell you that is a long time. The scale of the event is truly unbelievable with sessions on everything from obscure networking protocols to courses on IT management, and everything in between.


For those of you who followed me here from my previous blog I promise to drop the meteorological references this time, but the temptation is still there! See https://communities.netapp.com/blogs/FlashMan/2013/01/16/cloud-types-for-observers


But I did want to carry on where we left off and give you some insight on The ANS / DeVere Group session at Cisco Live. It's been a busy couple of weeks as Andy Barrow, ANSGroup, Technical Director, and I have been involved in several new activities, the most scary of which was the Live Register Broadcast on the 25th Jan. I say scary because doing interviews live to camera, especially to the El Reg. audience is always a challenge.


Please judge for yourself, below is the link to the video, so hopefully some useful insight on real world experiences from customers and partners who have made the journey to cloud. http://mediazone.brighttalk.com/comm/registerzone/e677731b40-34641-5496-39733


And the presentation is here:



Once again Andy and I took the stage at CiscoLive. Andy described how DeVere  had grown through acquisition and the challenges this presented. Many organisations find themselves in this situation, following multiple acquisitions, and having lived through (and survived !)  a couple of acquisitions myself I can safely say the the integration of different incompatible IT systems can be a big headache. DeVere found exactly that, inheriting legacy technology with all the additional complexity and support issues. Storage capacity management was a nightmare and systems could not be relied upon to support core applications, while costs were increasingly becoming unpredictable.


ans group - its all about the cloud


The DeVere Group took time to weigh up the options and then made the decision to work with NetApp partner ANS Group moving their entire operation to a 'Infrastructure 3.0 in the Cloud' Managed Cloud Service from ANS Group. Infrastructure 3.0 (i3) makes extensive use of FlexPod Converged Infrastructure for the Cloud consisting of Certified Validated Designs using Cisco UCS Servers, Cisco Nexus switches and NetApp FAS storage.


The out come of the migration to i3 and FlexPod resulted in immediate benefits, such as the reduction in data centre rack space, from 18 to just 3, with the additional benefits of the reduction in power and cooling. From an operational point of view i3 made a huge and immediate impact and ANS were to offer SLA's that guaranteed availability using NetApp SnapShot technology and VMware's Site Recovery Manager. The most important benefit the transition delivered was the ability to respond almost instantly to changing business needs allowing DeVere to focus on their core business - hospitality.


If you want to find out more about FlexPod one easy way is to download the FlexPod App from the iTunes Appstore. There you will find all the links to the CVD's, experience and case studies.


For those of you at CiscoLive please drop by and visit NetApp on stand D1, there you can see and hear about FlexPod from our technical gurus.


Here are a few useful links to follow:

Follow all the CiscoLiveEurope activity https://twitter.com/ciscoliveeurope

Folow FlexPod https://twitter.com/askflexpod

ANS DeVere case study pdf  http://www.ansgroup.co.uk/case-studies/de-vere

Follow me https://twitter.com/lozdjames

Follow John Rollason https://twitter.com/johnrollason

Follow all the news from CiscoLive https://twitter.com/netappuk

Follow the ANS Group https://twitter.com/ansgroup

Look for hash tag #NetAppCLEUR