Not all infrastructures are created equal, and not only because different sectors have vastly different requirements. So far there have been 5 VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF for short) deployments in the Netherlands, and RedLogic was there for 2 of them. These two deployments are in very different sectors; healthcare and education. Today I’d like to share a bit about our healthcare customer and why they chose VCF.
A hospital manages data differently than, say, a retailer or a university. Healthcare is very sensitive in regards to privacy and patient data. There are some serious requirements to data and network security, and privacy, which are some of the toughest issues in IT today.
As part of a regular hardware refresh this customer decided it wanted to move away from traditional storage-compute-network approach for a more hyperconverged setup. At the end of 2018 they asked VMware to give some suggestions as to what they could deploy. A few months after this initial workshop RedLogic was asked by VMware to perform this VCF deployment from start to finish. At this moment (October 2019) we’re in the final stages of the deployment and we have migrated 80% of their old environment to the new (fully automated, of course).
As with all good projects, it all starts with a design. And the best design for your VMware environment is the one that comes straight from the source; VMware Validated Design. One of the good things about VCF is that it is almost completely based on this document, but in a fully automated way. So instead of having you and your engineers tune your deployment to get it to that level, just let the SDDC manager do it for you!
On top of using a tried-and-true design they wanted to/had to move into a more secured environment. Perimeter security is no longer a viable option these days, as you should know. Therefore NSX is a must-have. In the VCF stack NSX is a completely integrated solution. When you create a workload domain (WLD), a new vCenter and NSX manager gets deployed, as well as the 3 NSX controllers. In this WLD, each cluster gets its own distributed vSwitch, so the swath of logical wires your virtual network accumulates becomes more manageable per cluster.
The fact that each WLD comes with a vCenter, NSX manager and controllers is also part of why VCF was such a great fit for this customer; the ease of scaling up. Segmentation (macro and micro) is paramount to a secure environment. If you have a need to completely separate an environment from the rest, why not make it really separate and give it an entire SDDC? Bonus: you can still manage it centrally from the Management WLD where all your vCenters are stored.
A bright future
These three points (don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot more I could write about, but I got to save some for the other blog posts) made the choice for VCF completely obvious. It’s flexible, secure, and easy to manage. From what we at RedLogic have seen so far from the developments of VCF, with how fast new features get developed and where we were a few months ago versus now, there’s a bright future ahead. VCF is being heavily developed as we could see from this year’s VMworld and it appears VMware has taken a keen interest in getting people to adopt this package.
You can also find me at VMworld Europe 2019! I’ll also be presenting to a select number of TAM customers alongside our customer mentioned in this article. If you have any questions at all you can message me through the VMworld app, or on Twitter. See you there!