Datacenter Trends

Hitachi Launches Vantara, Unveils Smart Data Center Suite

The new suite will include increased support and security tools for datacenter managers.

Hitachi, the multinational Japanese IT company, announced a major reorganization last week that could impact datacenter managers in a big way. The Tokyo-based conglomerate is combining three of its U.S.-based business units -- Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), Hitachi Insight Group and Pentaho -- into a single company called Hitachi Vantara.

The combined business units will sell HDS's datacenter infrastructure, Insight's big data software and Pentaho analytics. The new organization is expected to generate $4 billion in revenue and employ about 7,000 people. It will be based in Santa Clara, Calif., in the heart of Silicon Valley.

The big news here for datacenter managers is Vantara's Smart Data Center, a suite of tools for managing datacenters and infrastructure via sensors and analytics. The suite comes with of dashboards for risk management, planning and optimization, the company said.

"Our Smart Data Center technologies and services provide powerful new tools and approaches so the next-generation datacenter administrator can manage more, manage better, and improve IT's ability to become an agile and responsive resource for the business," said Bobby Soni, Vantara's chief solutions and services officer, in a statement.

Hitachi envisions Vantara's Smart Data Center as "the ultimate approach to optimize all aspects of IT operations across datacenters, reduce cost, manage risk and increase agility to respond to business change," the company said. It combines cutting edge infrastructure management, predictive analytics and internet of things (IoT) capabilities "to address the challenges customers face in managing today's complex IT environments."

What differentiates this approach from traditional IT administration is the level of automation; the Smart Data Center suite centralizes control and automates processes that span systems, datacenters and clouds, effectively automating decision-making, insight and guidance through predictive analytics, IoT and prescriptive intelligence. The suite centralizes the management of IT infrastructure for simple tasks, such as provisioning, as well as more complex operations, such as optimization and self-healing across datacenters.

Among other things, the Smart Data Center suite reduces the time it takes to deploy IT resources and complete administrative tasks; streamlines changing and adding new infrastructure technology; and provides holistic, dynamic datacenter operational and commercial views, on-demand, for data-driven decision-making, risk management and planning.

The new Vantara organization puts Hitachi in more direct competition with companies like Dell EMC, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IBM and Lenovo. Hitachi says it has an advantage over those companies, because of its depth of understanding about the operational needs of vertical markets. But it will also compete with General Electric, Microsoft, Amazon and Google in the Internet of Things (IoT) space.

The company unveiled Vantara at its Hitachi NEXT conference last week in Las Vegas. The Smart Data Center suite is available through an early customer adoption program, and the company made a strong pitch for customer input. The program "is designed to provide an opportunity for initial customers… to cocreate the final capabilities with our partners and us before the solution is standardized for general availability."

About the Author

John has been covering the high-tech beat from Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area for nearly two decades. He serves as Editor-at-Large for Application Development Trends (www.ADTMag.com) and contributes regularly to Redmond Magazine, The Technology Horizons in Education Journal, and Campus Technology. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including The Everything Guide to Social Media; The Everything Computer Book; Blobitecture: Waveform Architecture and Digital Design; John Chambers and the Cisco Way; and Diablo: The Official Strategy Guide.

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