HPE Synergy Gen 10 – Composable Infrastructure

September 1st, 2017

Thomas Gardner
HPE Technologist
Mainline Information Systems


Back in Dec 2015, in London, HPE announced its future technology called Synergy. On the surface, this new solution represented the next level of the very successful modular play of its C7000 BladeSystem. However, it was anything but “just that.” It was a far more efficient and future-looking concept that brought customers a true data center option, representing several of the strategic pillars on which HPE’s long term strategy is firmly planted – A hybrid world, on-prem cloud economics, a new ‘composable’ model that would be based on a purpose-built industry-first, called Synergy.

We at Mainline saw the value early, investing in 15 engineers visiting HPE labs in March 2016. The formal product was demonstrated at HPE Discover in June 2016 and from there Mainline began its journey with HPE Synergy as the first HPE partner to place it into a true production environment.

Check out this video of Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System and Mainline, as business partners, successfully leveraging the Synergy product.

Today, along with many other HPE x86 products, Synergy Compute Modules rolled to Gen 10 in July – adding security, performance and the continued drive of HPE’s OPEX value in this space.

So, what is Synergy?

Before I answer that question, it might help to understand this chart. This continuum represents a quick view of how HPE’s strategy has evolved to address the specific needs of so many customers. From left to right, traditional IT models with silos of apps on bare metal, in containers and VMs, and the trending storage patchworks created to address old and new challenges; to a Converged offering where pre-tested Reference Architectures (RA’s) were bundled in building blocks to assure ease of acquisition with assurances around performance and scale; to Hyper-converged to further drive value-add in the virtualized arena with a VM Vending Machine-type approach, based on modular RA’s leveraging Software Defined Storage to completely maximize the quantum of potential efficiencies; to the New ERA of Composable Infrastructure.

I see this chart as a set of paradigms of enterprise computing or overarching themes, under which specific solutions reside. In that view by example, the Converged realizes the CS500 SAP HANA RA, or CS700x AFA VMWare RA…Under Hyper-converged, we’d see HC 380, HC 250 to virtualization-specific solutions (now including HC 380 SimpliVity – blog to come shortly).

But let’s focus on the latest… Composable which currently has 2 notables, but I can see more solutions, in the near future, as well:

  1. Synergy, which is here today, and
  2. The Machine, a future state leveraging HPE’s Synergy Photonics connectivity – coming from new open standard ‘Gen Z,’ work, as a memory-focused platform.

Composability is the newest paradigm in enterprise computing. It lets you simplify IT with a unified foundation for all workloads. In this Hybrid IT model, resources can be configured and reconfigured in seconds to support new and existing workloads as their unique requirements evolve. More importantly, they can be added at any point, without integration complexities to create a pay-as-you-go private infrastructure.

Now let’s take a peek at Synergy itself.

The Synergy platform was built from the ground up, to bridge traditional and new IT with the agility, speed and continuous delivery needed for today’s applications. Organizations can now optimize DevOps, with infrastructure as code, for breakthrough time to market and deployment flexibility.

  • Synergy will leverage fluid resource pools. Orchestrating access to stores of compute, storage and fabric, which ensures all resources are instantly accessible and configurable. This begins the shift away from, or need for, traditional infrastructure siloes.
  • Synergy adopts software-defined intelligence that gives IT generalists a template-based approach for rapidly provisioning, updating and scaling applications.
  • Synergy is an API-driven management solution that leverages a single line of code and a bare metal interface to create a fully programmable, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) compute model.
  • I’ve added a few component names as well so you can logically construct an image:

– Synergy Frame
– Synergy Fabric
– Synergy Composer
– Synergy Image Streamer
– Synergy Compute Modules
– Synergy Storage Modules

Hopefully, the vision is becoming clear – a composable infrastructure is a framework in which physical compute, storage and network fabric resources are treated as services. In your composable infrastructure, your resources can be logically pooled so that administrators are not required to physically configure hardware to support a specific software application. Keep this in mind as well, while this advanced technology is somewhat available through multiple vendors, there is only one platform that was purposely architected for composable infrastructure, HPE Synergy.

We continue to see this technology embraced for both the composable attributes and as a natural migration or upgrade to existing blade environments.

I look forward to sharing more HPE insights here in the Mainline Blog. Thanks for spending a few minutes.

Please contact your Mainline Account Executive directly, or click here to contact us with any questions.

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