Dell Technologies today launched Dell EMC PowerOne, a managed service for on-premises IT environments that leverages a controller running Kubernetes and an instance of the Ansible IT automation framework to remotely configure and manage servers, storage and networks.
The controller comes in the form of an appliance that communicates with a management plane that Dell delivers as a cloud service. Via that control plane, Dell delivers and updates and manages instances of VMware by managing infrastructure as code.
Sam Grocott, senior vice president of marketing for the Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG) of Dell EMC, says PowerOne is available via several different subscription-based pricing models or a consumption-based model enabled by a metering capability embedded within the service. Those options will make it possible to treat on-premises IT infrastructure as an operating expense in much the same manner public cloud services are consumed, he says.
The Dell EMC PowerOne service executes Ansible playbooks that Dell deploys as a set of microservices on Kubernetes to automate the management of IT infrastructure. Those playbooks, which are based on algorithms Dell created by observing best practices implemented by existing Dell EMC customers, not only automate provisioning but also make it easier to scale by adding, removing or reassigning capacity and resources as needed.
In addition, Dell EMC PowerOne is providing access to a centralized console that eliminates the need to log into each server, storage array or network switch separately. Dell has also embedded data protection software to manage the backup and recovery process via the cloud.
Overall, Dell claims Dell EMC PowerOne will reduce by 98% the number of manual steps required to get a system up and running.
Dell is not the only provider of IT infrastructure embracing automated managed services to provide a “cloud-like” experience in on-premises IT environments. The expectation is that if on-premises IT environments become more agile, there will be much less incentive to shift workloads to a public cloud. Less clear is to what degree IT organizations will want to surrender that level of control over IT operations. There’s no doubt a significant number of IT organizations will be content to have Dell manage systems on their behalf. Other organizations, however, prefer to combine best-of-breed server, storage and networking technologies. In those instances, organizations will either opt to automate IT operations themselves or look for an external third-party services provider capable of automating the management of IT operations across platforms from multiple IT vendors.
Even after a decade of public cloud services being available, the number of workloads running on-premises is still easily three times larger than the number of workloads running in public clouds. The rate at which application workloads are moving to the public cloud may have accelerated in recent years. However, so, too, are the number of applications being repatriated from public clouds to on-premises IT environments. In fact, if Dell has anything to say about it, the day when all workloads are running in public clouds will never dawn.