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HCI – what it is and how it can help your business


20th October 2018

Every few years, a new techy buzzword or phrase is invented. Virtualisation and digital transformation have been up there for a while, but the latest sounds even more futuristic and hard to fathom: hyperconvergence.

People in the technology industry have been excited about the Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI) for a couple of years, but it doesn’t mean very much to those outside.

Hyperconvergence is great for business because it makes companies more agile. Even though it sounds like something out of a sci fi movie, it’s actually been created to help ordinary business people do their jobs.

What HCI means

In a nutshell, HCI is an IT framework that puts all your storage, computing and networking solutions into one single system. The ideas is to make things easier, faster and more cost effective than traditional data centre architectures – the clue is in the word “hyper”. Not only does it bring all your key systems together, it does it in super-quick time.

The main difference between a traditional converged infrastructure and HCI is that the original relies on hardware building blocks, while hyperconverged systems are software based. This instantly makes them more scalable and bank balance-friendly, because you don’t have to keep investing in new machinery to meet the needs of a growing business.

Standard converged systems are attached to physical servers, whereas an HCI system works on virtual servers and shares storage space among all virtual machines and connected devices. Everything is all fused into single appliances called “nodes” to scale up or down, all you need to do is adjust the number of nodes you use.

The benefits of HCI include:

  • Less downtime– because each node has its own storage, if one becomes unavailable, work can continue on one of the others.
  • More freedom – because all workloads are in the same place, it’s easier to transfer workloads from one user to another.
  • Scalability – HCI can grow with you, putting even small start-ups on a level playing field with big, well established companies.
  • Disaster recovery – data is easy to restore even after a cyber attack or accidental loss, making it much easier to get back on track.
  • Cost efficiency – any kind of virtualisation gives companies huge potential to save a lot of money, because there’s much less need for expensive in-house equipment or large on-site support teams.

How to begin

Any kind of new way of working takes time to get right. You’ll need to work with a supplier who understands how your business operates and will talk you through all the different options available to you. As a proud member of the Dell EMC partner program, Couno is perfectly positioned to advise you on the most cost effective ways to improve your IT infrastructure. To find out more about how HCI can work for your business, contact us today for a no-obligation chat.