News Release

Cisco Collaborates with VMware to Deliver a Tested Solution with Advanced Storage Area Network Services for VMware Environments

Data Center Solution Provides SAN-attached Virtual Machines with Advanced Cisco MDS 9000 Storage Networking Capabilities
Nov 10, 2008

SAN JOSE, Calif. - November 10, 2008 - As part of its Data Center 3.0 strategy, Cisco is collaborating with VMware to deliver a tested and validated solution for Cisco® MDS storage area networks (SANs) designed specifically to help customers improve the security, scalability and management of storage networks attached to VMware environments. This solution supports Cisco's vision to help its customers to design and build next generation data centers. The Cisco vision for Data Center 3.0 entails the real-time, dynamic orchestration of infrastructure services from shared pools of virtualized server, storage and network resources, while optimizing application performance, service levels, efficiency and collaboration.

Virtual machines allow information technology (IT) managers to run multiple applications and operating systems on a single physical machine. Virtualizing the data center improves resource use and provides a simpler and more efficient computing model to meet customer needs. The combined solution of Cisco MDS SANs with the VMware platform helps customers to more easily implement storage consolidation, disaster recovery, business continuity and storage backup solutions, as well as improve the visibility, security, and traffic isolation of applications. The VMware platform increases ROI while enabling the flexibility customers need to build next-generation data centers that are highly elastic, self-managing and self-healing. Cisco MDS SANs can now be virtual machine-optimized, delivering a resilient, high-performance fabric to support large, dense virtual environments by providing consistent policy, visibility, and diagnostics for virtual machines across the data center.

"We have a complex virtual IT environment at Trinity Health, and we look to our key vendors such as VMware and Cisco to collaborate in simplifying and optimizing joint solutions so they work together to our best advantage," said Mark Trancygier, storage architect, Trinity Health. "Cisco MDS 9000 helps us to scale our virtual machine-attached SAN infrastructure, and this collaboration will help us further our goals to achieve an end-to-end virtualized storage environment."

VMware-Optimized SANs by Cisco

Cisco SANs optimized by VMware provide security, mobility, performance monitoring and capacity planning at the virtual machine level, enabling IT managers to better monitor, manage, and scale SAN-attached virtual machines. For example, IT managers can now move, add or change servers without reconfiguring SAN switches or storage arrays, and servers can retain their SAN identity even when moved or replaced in the server chassis.

"VMware and Cisco continue to use our combined expertise in virtualization and networking to develop solutions and services that can help our customers improve IT efficiency and increase business productivity," said Shekar Ayyar, vice president of infrastructure alliances, VMware. "With the combination of VMware Infrastructure and VMware-optimized SANs, customers can take full advantage of SAN benefits while easily scaling their virtual environments. This can enable customers to accommodate growth and continue meeting service levels without adding cost or complexity."

Cisco and VMware also jointly offer virtualization consulting services to help customers create and deploy server, network and storage virtualization solutions that can reduce cost by provisioning new applications quickly and more safely, while maintaining high levels of application performance.

Partners can find out more around this solution by logging on to VMware's partner portal Partner Central to register for a joint Cisco and VMware webinar on Tuesday, Nov., 11, 8:30 a.m. PST. Cisco is also a member of the VMware Alliance Affiliate initiative, which promotes joint solution selling between VMware, its Technology Alliance Partners, and VMware reseller communities. Additional information is at

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