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The Egg of Columbus

Which HCI solution is right for you?

Many companies are asking themselves how they can use HCI solutions to refresh and modernize their data center, thus leveraging public cloud services to supplement or replace existing on-premise capabilities.

One of our customers in the international food industry, where we have been a trusted partner in support and technology for several years, was asking the same question. The innovative thinking CIO of the company wanted to go new ways with a future-proof technology and thus reduce the administrative effort at lower costs.

After several discussions, it was decided that we would perform a test installation with Azure Stack HCI for our customer. The pilot installation and all subsequent tests were successful and so it was decided by our customer to deploy this technology in all areas of the business and thus look forward to a well equipped future.

Here is an overview of the Azure Hybrid ecosystem, its individual solutions and the business challenges associated with it:

Azure Stack HCI - For customers who want to refresh, modernize and consolidate their traditional on-premises virtualization platforms and integrate natively with Azure services. It is an option for customers moving to a hybrid cloud operating model as it uses a purpose-built HCI operating system deployed as an Azure service.

Azure Stack Hub - For customers who need to run their own instance of Azure Resource Manager (i.e., the Azure control plane) on-premises, e.g., for regulatory compliance, disconnected/boundary use cases, workflow and application modernization, data sovereignty and integrity, or other reasons. Essentially, the customer assumes Microsoft's role as Azure service provider.

Azure Arc - It is used to extend Azure management capabilities to on-premises or other public clouds. This extends the Azure control plane, ARM, and provides governance features such as RBAC and policies for non-Azure resources such as virtual machines and Kubernetes clusters. In addition, customers can leverage automated patching, upgrades, security and scaling as needed across on-premises, edge and multi-cloud environments. Finally, customers can build cloud-native applications that can run anywhere. Any Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF)-compliant Kubernetes cluster connected via Azure Arc is now a supported deployment target for Azure application and data services. This is a Microsoft Azure service, but plays an essential role in the Integrated System for Microsoft Azure Stack HCI solution.


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