Get to know the history of the VMware-IBM partnership

Techtarget | June 27, 2019

Since IBM and VMware partnered in 2016, the two have worked to integrate their cloud and management products. Both companies have benefitted from the agreement, but a rapidly evolving cloud landscape raises questions about long-term viability. Organizations require a system of open, cloud-agnostic tools to develop, deploy and manage multiple clouds. VMware created such a system when it teamed up with IBM to extend its on-premises management tools vSphere, NSX and vSAN to the IBM Cloud.VMware wants to become Switzerland of cloud management systems, said Roy Illsley, analyst at market research firm Ovum, a division of Informa, based out of Boston.

Spotlight

These release notes describe the new features, improvements and changes in release 2.4 of the Cisco Meeting Server software. The Cisco Meeting Server software can be hosted on: n the Cisco Meeting Server 2000, a UCS 5108 chassis with 8 B200 blades and the Meeting Server software pre-installed as the sole application. n the Cisco Meeting Server 1000, a Cisco UCS server preconfigured with VMware and the Cisco Meeting Server installed as a VM deployment. n the Acano X-Series hardware. n or on a specification-based VM server. Note: From version 2.4 Meeting Server software no longer supports Microsoft Hyper-V.


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VIRTUAL DESKTOP TOOLS

Exoprise Customers Achieve Significant ROI With SaaS and Digital Experience Monitoring

Exoprise | September 12, 2022

Exoprise, a leader in Digital Experience Monitoring (DEM) solutions, announced that its customers continue to realize significant Return on Investment (ROI) with Exoprise solutions and achieve positive ROI within six months of implementation. Troubleshooting remote worker issues using traditional tools creates visibility challenges, severely impacting business continuity and productivity. According to the latest Forrester future of work survey, 20% of employees contact the service desk support team weekly, and 10% contact them daily – far too often to remain consistently productive. In current economic conditions, companies have the potential to save thousands to millions in IT costs using features and capabilities offered by Exoprise DEM solutions. As one of the Exoprise customers, a global CRM head at a financial services company, told us, "Upon returning from a weekend, our employees could not access their Salesforce app in the morning. As a result, IT and several other teams spent at least half a day trying to find the root cause, which cost the company about $500K. With Exoprise synthetics, we would have immediately narrowed the problem to a change made by the network team and saved a huge loss to the company." Exoprise customers achieve superior ROI with their DEM investment by: Recovering Service Level Agreement (SLA) credit – IT teams receive Service Level Agreement (SLA) violation credits when Microsoft 365 has downtime. For example, Microsoft services such as Azure, Teams, OneDrive, etc. may not be available due to an outage or technical issue. Service availability less than the SLA of 99.9% requires Microsoft to reward credits to the customer. Exoprise provides actionable availability reports that act as evidence of true downtime, outage length, events, errors, and corresponding service health. Customers quickly verify and claim their credits to recoup the cost of the Exoprise system. Saving Costs on Device Refresh and Upgrades – IT departments often need to upgrade their infrastructure with new hardware or software, so employees remain productive and job satisfaction remains high. However, with a shrinking economy and flat expense budget, businesses struggle to keep up with that mandate. Utilizing Exoprise Service Watch Real User Monitoring (RUM), operation teams are driving upgrade decisions based on hard network and device telemetry data, segmenting different user groups, and auditing remote endpoint devices. The result is an optimized device refresh schedule and cost-effective companywide upgrades. Another Exoprise user, a Microsoft Teams administrator at a manufacturing services company, "We had frequent complaints from users about poor Teams meetings/calls. Initially, we would upgrade the hardware to the latest to fix the problem and spend thousands doing that, but the problems persisted. So, when we started using Service Watch, we could see exactly where the problem was for each user - and avoid upgrading when the problems were due to corporate network or weak Wi-Fi access points." Preventing Network Upgrade Surprises and Downtime – Future proofing the business means frequent network optimization. Enterprises rely on mission-critical services such as Microsoft 365, Salesforce, AWS, and SAP. Delivering these services via ISPs, MPLS, SDWAN, and VPN providers becomes susceptible to performance fluctuations. Exoprise provides end-to-end baseline views of the network for mission-critical applications before, during, and after any network transformation takes place. As a result, network administrators can ensure that the end-user experience is improved and access is more reliable. Delivering Better Digital Experiences Anywhere and reducing MTTR – The Modern Workplace demands remote flexibility along with the freedom to work anywhere. ITOps teams require end-to-end visibility into apps, the network, and system performance for these Digital Nomads, and the Exoprise platform delivers. Once deployed, Exoprise helps customers safely transition to a hybrid work model. Proactive synthetics provide early outage detection while crowdsourced analytics reduce the troubleshooting time in half. Improving Productivity with Less Dropped Calls for Teams, Zoom, and Webex – Today, knowledge workers collaborate using Unified Communication (UC), VoIP, and streaming applications such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and WebEx. Customers use Exoprise to proactively test and tune their networks for the collaboration platforms and offer complete coverage with Service Watch RUM. As a result, there is a significant ROI in reduced dropped calls and smoother call quality. "Due to Covid, our IT model has shifted from primarily supporting call center operations to supporting a significantly larger virtual environment. That was when we became interested in better measuring digital experiences from the end user's perspective. Synthetic sensors in our central data centers collect performance data on Microsoft 365, but we wanted an even more complete picture. Together with a real user monitoring on-demand solution, we can better understand the issues of our users at any geographic location," said Kevin Santos, Senior Director of IT, Network Operation Center, BCD Travel. "Exoprise has always been at the forefront of supporting our customers with innovative digital solutions and addressing hybrid workforce challenges with a complete view into the end-user experience, Our Service Watch product rapidly isolates call quality problems with VoIP and streaming apps such as Microsoft Teams, WebEx, and Zoom in real-time and ensures smooth collaboration from anywhere. In addition, our technical ability to deliver synthetics and real-user behavior insights in one platform differentiates us in the market." Exoprise CEO Jason Lieblich Read more about the combination of RUM and synthetics in our latest whitepaper and ensure the best digital employee experience for streaming, collaboration, and VoIP apps such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, WebEx, and GoToMeeting. Better Together: Combine Real User Monitoring with Synthetics About Exoprise Exoprise enables IT teams to effectively deploy and manage its monitoring solution and mission-critical, cloud-based applications and services. CloudReady provides real-time performance visibility from behind the firewall to the cloud and back with synthetic monitoring. Service Watch provides location-independent end-user experience insights for SaaS and third-party web applications with real user monitoring. By leveraging proactive network path diagnostics, real user experience metrics, actual app usage data, and crowd-sourcing data analytics, organizations now have visibility, speed, and agility to easily assure the best cloud service performance.

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VIRTUAL DESKTOP STRATEGIES

Kyndryl and Citrix Announce Global Alliance to Help Customers Accelerate Adoption of Digital Workplace Virtualization Services and Solutions

Kyndryl and Citrix | October 03, 2022

Kyndryl the world’s largest IT infrastructure services provider, today announced a global alliance with Citrix to help businesses improve workplace collaboration and employee productivity to address the rapidly changing requirements of today’s hybrid workforce on a global scale. By leveraging the longstanding operational and industry expertise of Kyndryl’s Digital Workplace Services, powered by Citrix DaaS, both companies will continue to develop modernized, end-to-end IT management services and virtual desktop solutions across hybrid and multi-cloud environments for new and existing customers. Through the alliance, Kyndryl will extend the reach of its framework of flexible workplace modernization services designed and deployed for Citrix’s core technologies, including comprehensive desktop and application virtualization managed services that provide secure, remote access to corporate assets from any device or location, while enhancing overall employee satisfaction and end-user experiences. “Kyndryl and Citrix have worked side-by-side as longstanding partners for nearly two decades, and we’re thrilled to continue growing our relationship and customer offerings with Citrix,” said Ivan Dopplé, General Manager, Kyndryl Digital Workplace Services Global Practice. “Both companies have always remained hyper-focused on helping our global customers navigate the complexities of the modern-day workplace and embracing agility as the business landscape continues to shift at unprecedented speed.” Kyndryl currently provides managed application support services for over 400,000 Citrix users to enterprises around the world. The service offerings provided in collaboration with Citrix include: VDI/DaaS/Virtual App Transformation Services: Driving agility and best-in-class user experiences by building and transforming clients through the delivery of modern DaaS solutions Secure Remote Access Services: Delivering DaaS implementations that strengthen security postures and enhance protection of customer data while facing the challenges of growing remote workforces Cloud Migrations with Citrix Cloud: Helping customers accelerate their journey to the cloud by delivering an integrated digital workspace with advanced security capabilities that unifies multiple Citrix Cloud services onto a single, unified platform across on-premises, public and hybrid cloud environments. “Kyndryl is an important and trusted partnership for Citrix, with deep technical expertise in managing and delivering Citrix solutions across public and on-premises cloud platforms, Now more than ever before, workers are the most valuable asset for any organization, but businesses continue to face new challenges in successfully implementing the tools and technologies that foster real collaboration and productivity. With Kyndryl, our combined workplace solutions and skills have the unmatched ability to provide tangible impact and growth for our customers and their employees alike.” Michelle Senecal de Fonseca, Vice President, Citrix Global Cloud Innovation Strategic Partnerships About Kyndryl Kyndryl is the world’s largest IT infrastructure services provider serving thousands of enterprise customers in more than 60 countries. The Company designs, builds, manages and modernizes the complex, mission-critical information systems that the world depends on every day.

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VIRTUAL DESKTOP STRATEGIES

3Cloud Data Solutions Make Healthcare Compliance Concerns a Thing of the Past

3Cloud LLC | September 13, 2022

3Cloud is transforming the healthcare, pharmaceutical and life sciences industries by modernizing data estates and applications while driving interoperability with the Microsoft Azure cloud. 3Cloud's broad array of offerings, including high performance computing, bioinformatics, application modernization, modern data platform, FHIR and interoperability have led them to become the go to partner across the industry. With forward-thinking data estate and app modernization solutions, 3Cloud enables physicians and other healthcare providers to see a more complete view of their patients and develop a better understanding of their utilization rates and demand for services. 3Cloud is empowering decision-makers across the industry to look at how healthcare providers access and use health information to drive better models of care, improve patient safety and clinical outcome, and enhance the overall patient experience. Healthcare systems must always balance the delivery of care with operational efficiency. Clinical outcomes, revenue cycle management, progressive research, and administrative efficiency compete for attention. 3Cloud helps providers create modern data platforms to improve revenue cycle analytics, supply chain management, nurse schedules, reimbursement rates and more to ensure that their internal operations run smoothly and effectively. Insurers often have a large variety of sources and levels of complexity when it comes to data. A leading U.S. healthcare payor whose tens of thousands of employees serve millions of members is working to transform their business by embracing a nimble, elastic modern data architecture. By partnering with 3Cloud to launch their business transformation, the insurer saw almost instantaneous benefits, including rapid access to accurate data and predictive analytics. 3Cloud is also helping healthcare payors and providers tackle data integration challenges and comply with the CMS interoperability requirements under the 2016 Cures Act. 3Cloud's solutions for Fast Health Interoperability Resources (FHIR) are designed to create a modern, secure and highly flexible environment. By implementing a framework leveraging Azure Health Data Services for the consumption, storage and aggregation of data with industry-leading architecture and data design patterns, they provide a simple and digestible way for developers to interact with healthcare data. This allows for the focus to shift more towards innovation and less on managing infrastructure supporting interoperability use cases. Once this framework is established, focus can be shifted to advancing innovation through SMART on FHIR application development, complex integrations, and advanced analytics, all of which lead to a better patient or member experience. Their experience building, managing and migrating HIPAA-compliant applications on the cloud helps organizations create and execute the right plan to modernize their applications, without affecting current business operations or compromising proprietary applications. Prioritization is put on reducing operating costs and gaining the agility to iterate and innovate with ease. The cloud offers opportunities to perform bioinformatics analyses interactively and at-scale, helping to overcome the struggle for genomics research to analyze vast amounts of data in an efficient way. 3Cloud has perfected this by using Azure Synapse to analyze millions of variants quickly as opposed to the old way of using large, on-premise high performance computing (HPC) cluster jobs. Another method 3Cloud utilizes to pave the way for genomics research is by using Azure Data Lake to centralize data and automate bioinformatics pipelines in the cloud, while also providing enterprise-grade data security. 3Clouds' Azure Data and Analytics Platform solution makes creating new research enclaves for research projects a templatized, automated process, taking research startup time from days to hours. It also provides researchers with the ability to use traditional frameworks or High Compute (HCP) services, streamlining the process of delivering results. The strong relationship with Microsoft is a cornerstone of 3Cloud's proven success. This year they were awarded Microsoft Partner of the Year across multiple categories, including: Worldwide Winner Migration to Azure Worldwide Winner Solution Assessments US Winner Solution Assessments US Winner Modernizing Applications Worldwide Finalist Analytics Worldwide Finalist Healthcare & Life Sciences 3Cloud was selected from over 3,900 worldwide and 1,800 national partner nominations, for demonstrating excellence in digital innovation and modernizing clients' data estates and applications on the Microsoft Azure platform. About 3Cloud As a top Microsoft services partner focused 100% on the Azure platform, 3Cloud helps clients build, migrate, modernize and manage their applications, infrastructure, data and analytics in the cloud. Founded by Mike Rocco and Jim Dietrich who served over 15 years together at Microsoft, 3Cloud combines a team of highly experienced cloud architects and technologists with a strong network of Microsoft sales and engineering relationships to deliver the ultimate Azure experience for clients. 3Cloud is headquartered in Chicago and serves clients throughout the U.S.

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SERVER VIRTUALIZATION

Verge.io Launches New Wiki and Training Modules for Quick-Start and Self-Guided Knowledge

Verge.io | October 13, 2022

Verge.io, the company with a simpler way to virtualize data centers, today launched a new online wiki and self-paced training modules to help onboard new users and allow prospective customers to better evaluate Verge-OS software prior to a test drive. The new wiki, located at https://wiki.verge.io, contains technical overviews of features such as storage, snapshots, hypervisor, synchronization, and GPU support plus dozens of knowledgebase articles drawn from more than five years of real-world customer deployments. Six new online training modules, each with multiple individual training sessions, give detailed explanations and demonstrations such as networking, snapshotting entire data centers, setting up synchronization between Verge-OS installations, and more. Each training session can be completed in only a few minutes, thanks to the simplicity of Verge-OS and its UI. Customers can also use the robust search function to look for a word or phrase across all the content in the wiki, knowledgebase, and training modules. “We set out to make Verge-OS the simplest and most powerful single piece of virtualization software in the world, and these investments in the wiki, training, knowledgebase and videos provide the supporting content to deliver on our purpose, I appreciate the contributions of our team members and our longtime customers in developing these materials for the benefit of the community.” Greg Campbell, CTO of Verge.io Verge-OS software enables virtualized data centers with greater savings and efficiencies than competing platforms. Verge-OS abstracts compute, network, and storage from commodity servers and creates pools of raw resources that are simple to run and manage, creating feature-rich infrastructures for environments and workloads like clustered HPC, ultra-converged and hyperconverged data centers, DevOps and Test/Dev, compliant medical and healthcare, remote and edge compute including VDI, and multi-tenant private clouds. Verge-OS is the only single piece of virtualization software that can provide a common platform from the edge to the public cloud and everyplace in between. It is easy to install and uses AI/ML for self-management so it can be managed by an IT generalist. A single license replaces separate hypervisor, networking, storage, data protection, and management tools to simplify technology stacks. Secure virtual data centers based on Verge-OS include all enterprise data services like global deduplication, disaster recovery, continuous data protection, snapshots, long-distance synch, and auto-failover. They are ideal for creating honeypots, sandboxes, cyber ranges, air-gapped computing, and secure compliance enclaves to meet regulations such as HIPAA, CUI, SOX, NIST, and PCI. Nested multi-tenancy gives service providers, departmental enterprises, and campuses the ability to assign resources and services to groups and sub-groups. About Verge.io Verge.io provides a simpler way to virtualize data centers and end IT infrastructure complexity. The company’s Verge OS software is the first and only fully integrated virtual cloud software stack to build, deploy and manage virtual data centers. Verge-OS delivers significant capital savings, increased operational efficiencies, reduced risk, and rapid scalability.

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Spotlight

These release notes describe the new features, improvements and changes in release 2.4 of the Cisco Meeting Server software. The Cisco Meeting Server software can be hosted on: n the Cisco Meeting Server 2000, a UCS 5108 chassis with 8 B200 blades and the Meeting Server software pre-installed as the sole application. n the Cisco Meeting Server 1000, a Cisco UCS server preconfigured with VMware and the Cisco Meeting Server installed as a VM deployment. n the Acano X-Series hardware. n or on a specification-based VM server. Note: From version 2.4 Meeting Server software no longer supports Microsoft Hyper-V.

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