CPS Standard on Nutanix Released

nutanixCPS

Fun and crazy days here at Nutanix. I’ve busy been fielding a lot of calls around our new offering, CPS Standard on Nutanix. Now if you don’t know what CPS is, it stands for Cloud Platform System.

So what is Microsoft CPS anyways?

Simply, Microsoft CPS is a software stack of Window Server, System Center, and Windows Azure Pack.  CPS delivers a self-service cloud environment for Windows and Linux applications that provides optimized deployment of Windows Azure Pack.

Currently based on Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2 and Windows Azure Pack, CPS provides an Azure-consistent experience by leveraging Azure services to deliver business continuity (through Azure Site Recovery) of your hybrid cloud for your virtualized Windows and Linux workloads. For more details on Windows Azure Pack, check out my blog series on WAP.

If you have read my WAP blog series, building your own cloud can be a complex undertaking. Integrating the hardware, installing and configuring the software, and optimizing the overall solution for usability, performance, and scale, and reliability means that many cloud deployments fall short.

Introducing Microsoft CPS on Nutanix, an easier way to deploy WAP

The solution is due to the co-engineering and joint validation efforts with Microsoft and Nutanix. Getting the solution up and running is pretty fast, accelerating your time to value.

The joint effort goes beyond initial deployment. Once the Microsoft\Nutanix CPS solution is up and running, you get a single point of contact for support and simplified patching and updating across the entire stack of firmware and software. And as an added benefit, you get the ability to scale the environment with all the Nutanix goodness.

Bits are installed at the factory, so when you get your Nutanix Block, it’s just as easy as a wizard to get you up and running.  Below is a video that my buddy @mcghee did on the install and initial configuration of CPS. The video brings you right up to the admin and tenant portals and gives you a brief tour.

Enjoy…Until next time, Rob….

Microsoft Exchange Documentor 1.0 – Planning Tool

Microsoft Exchange Documentor 1.0 - Planning Tool

Have you had a need to document your Exchange environment?  Do you need a tool to help you plan your upgrade of Exchange?  Is your documentation current for compliance purposes?

In my job at Nutanix, one of the things I do is support our sales engineers globally on Exchange and other Microsoft solutions.  And yes, on-premise Exchange is still going strong, even with O365 in the mix.  I still see a lot of engagements in the field with Exchange and usually around keeping their data out of the cloud or a dependence on some kind of line of business application.  In any case, one of the biggest challenges transitioning to Hyperconverged technologies like Nutanix is understanding what you currently have.  The complexities of legacy 3-teir infrastructure are hard enough.  You also need to understand the requirements of your current Exchange environment.  Depending on the size of your Enterprise, this can be a time burn and can have a margin of error.  You need to understand Exchange PowerShell and other touch points in the Exchange environment.

Exhange_AlwaysOn Microsoft Exchange Documentor 1.0 - Planning Tool

I originally built this tool, when I was working as a System Integrator before I joined Nutanix.  Its original purpose was for documenting a client Exchange environment after I was finished building it out.  The tool is based on PowerShell and leverages Microsoft Word to generate the final document. Currently, the tool only documents Exchange 2010 and does a basic hardware inventory.  My vision for the tool is to support all current versions of Exchange including O365 and build out a front-end GUI with report options. Maybe eventually, becoming a planning tool for sizing and transitioning your Exchange environment to true cloud-like agile infrastructure.

I started a Github project and you can check it out here.

http://netwatchme.github.io/Exchange-Documenter/

In this fast-paced world, we need as much automation as possible to make our jobs more efficent, so, we as engineers can have more time back at home or doing the things we enjoy :). To quote a line from Kirt in Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan “Hours instead of days! Now, we have minutes instead of hours.” pretty much sums the world we live in.

livelongprosper Microsoft Exchange Documentor 1.0 - Planning Tool

Live long and prosper…Until next time, Rob…..