IT & Network Infrastructure : Building Blocks for Cisco Unified Computing System Initiative
Cisco is aggressively pushing for a larger part of the data center space with its UCS (Unified Computing System) strategy, an initiative aimed at unifying the server, storage and networking tiers into a single, cohesive fabric, underpinned by virtualization technology. Launched March 16, the campaign pits Cisco against other data center stalwarts, including IBM, Dell, Hewlett-Packard with its Adaptive Infrastructure approach, and Sun, which April 13 launched its Open Network Systems initiative. Cisco is looking to leverage its strengths in networking, new blade servers powered by Intel's Xeon 5500 series processors and partnerships with such companies as EMC, NetApp and VMware to offer enterprises a unified data center fabric to meet the growing demand for performance and scalability while driving down costs around acquisition, management, power and cooling. Cisco has come under criticism from the likes of HP and Sun, who say that the networking giant's approach doesn't scale, isn't open and is expensive. However, Cisco officials answered that criticism and outlined key components of their strategy during an hour-long Internet presentation April 16 here.