Virtualization a Game Changer in Legacy-Burdened Data Centers, Says Stephen Foskett

Tech Field Day organizer Stephen Foskett stopped by theCube during this week’s Dell World convention to chat about data centers and corporate mobile strategies with John Furrier and Dave Vellante. See part one and part two for the full session (full videos below).

Foskett starts off by addressing converged infrastructure.  He says that the “Microsoft server concept” that still governs many IT departments today is far from ideal, but many older, conventional applications only work in these kinds of environments.

To Foskett, virtualization is a game changer. He describes it as means to transit from the old paradigm to a cloud-powered standardized stack that’s based on not converged, but rather modern infrastructure – a redefinition of the term that introduces present-day context. The idea appeals to him because the big innovators in this field are “blowing up the data center”, in his words.

He stresses that the lack of backward compatibility with the legacy apps mentioned earlier is a major shortcoming, but the advantages far outweigh this drawback. Foskett says that scalability is a huge factor: legacy infrastructure, and even modern offerings from traditional vendors, can’t keep up with the volatility of IT resource demand. The real promise is in the smaller firms that completely re-architect the data center to enable rapid scalability and fast access to compute and storage.

In spite of this, the big cloud providers all turn to traditional vendors for their hardware needs. Specifically, most of them turn to Dell – the company even developed a specialty box for this segment that is not available to the general public.

The second topic the trio tackles is mobile, and how it pertains to the vendor. Furrier says that Dell could apply the same approach that won it a huge stake in the PC market to mobile, and develop a reliable device that would differentiate itself with software. Foskett on the other chooses to ponder the BYOD trend as a whole, and makes several observations about enterprise mobility and Apple’s role in it.