Despite the shift towards hyper-converged infrastructure, Dell EMC is reaffirming its belief that converged infrastructure still has a part to play with its latest announcement.

At Cisco Live last week, Dell EMC announced the release of VxBlock Central 2.0 next month. It includes new licensing options, as well as new integrated Cisco compute (UCS) and storage (MDS) 32G options being released later in June. This was accompanied by an extension of its factory-integrated, on-premises integrated protection solutions for VxBlock to hybrid and multi-cloud environments (including AWS).

Mitchell Watts, the senior product marketing manager at Dell EMC, spoke with IT World Canada and said that converged infrastructure still has a role in the modern IT landscape; despite an industry shift towards hyper-converged infrastructure.

“It’s here, it’s strong, and it has a specific market. Organizations around the world rely on it for mission-critical business and mission-critical business is not going away,” said Watts, adding he views the two infrastructure models as two separate entities that are complimentary of each other. “In our view, this is the perfect platform for those customers with those high-value mission-critical workloads, such as SAP Oracle, for example. And we see this market, remaining strong.”

Watts said that the new licensing options being offered with VxBlock Central 2.0 are what excites him the most.

“We’re making it easier for customers to buy the automation and analytics capabilities that we’ve bundled into the software. So previously we had a tiered licensing model where customers had to buy the automation… or with that analytics plugin. Now they can buy either or,” he explained. “So it’s a bit simpler. That’s really the key benefit of the new licensing model with flexibility.”

The licensing options now include:

-Base: The base license, which comes with the purchase of a VxBlock, provides inventory reporting and alerting.

-Workflow Automation: Through vRealize Orchestrator, this provides engineered workflows, including Cisco UCS server expansion with Unity and XtremIO storage arrays.

-Advanced Analytics: This provides view capacity and KPIs to allow for deeper insights through vRealize Operations.

-Lifecycle Management (available later in 2019): This license allows you to apply “guided path” software upgrades and includes new multi-tenant, cloud-based database on Cloud IQ that will collect and store the CI component inventory structured by the customer.

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