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Ranting on SDDC

by Administrator on October 24, 2012

I just wrote a rant on “software-defined data centers” or “SDDCs” for Enterprise Tech Journal where I was probably too hard on the poor little computing Padawans (like CTO Steve Herrod) at VMware.

Truth is, I don’t get it.  But I don’t believe that not getting SDDC makes me stupid (as one Twitter commentator suggested:  “Where have you been?  VMware has been using SDDC since VMworld in August!”)

I looked into it and didn’t like what I found.  When exactly did companies cease to define their compute platforms and data centers according to their software requirements?  When did we stop following the time honored model:  Business Process Analysis –> Software Definition –> Entity Relationship Diagrams, I/O Flow Diagramming, Systems Requirements Specification –> Platform Requirements Specification –> Request for Proposal –> Final HW Design –>  Hardware Deployment and Testing…

Implicit (or maybe even explicit) in this process is the definition of a hardware kit that meets the requirements of the software workload and business/storage I/O requirements.  SDDC, by comparison to Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC), is a weak sister.

It appears that SDDC, according to Herrod, is also a synonym for “Cloud” (which explains a lot), and is also a metaphor for infrastructure management (better, though this is never explored in any detail).

Bottom line:  SDDC is just more self stroking initialism, used by stupid people who seek to make others feel stupid.  Like BYOD.

I like Steve Sicola’s contribution:  DATA — Drugs Are The Answer.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Ernst Lopes Cardozo November 1, 2012 at 7:24 pm

The “time honoured” top-down design method was abandoned when Mainframes came up: a new business requirement was dealt with by building or buying a new application that was supposed to run on the existing kit. Today, building a new compute infrastructure (storage, backup, servers, networks, etc.) takes many ‘business clock ticks’. If companies have to wait till new hardware has been specified, acquired, installed and tested, the opportunities will long be gone. The design method is bottom up as high as possible without knowing exactly what the business will want and need, then top-down as soon as the business requirement can be formulated. In practice, this means that not only the compute platform (be it mainframe or hypervisor) including storage, BC, DR but also databases, message queuing and all the management instrumentation are in place, running existing processes, with enough spare capacity to accommodate all but the most extravagant new business requests.
I am not fond of such acronyms as SDDC either, but in this case there is some substance behind it. Software will take the place of our IT heroes a.k.a. system administrators, that until now controlled server parks with their bare mouse. IT is finally applying its own recipe to automate its own business.

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