News Release

Cisco and Partners to Accelerate Data Center Virtualization

Cisco Introduces Channel Programs, Career Certifications and Cisco Unified Computing System C-Series Servers to Help Customers Transition to Next-Generation Data Centers
Jun 03, 2009

BOSTON – Cisco Partner Summit – June 3, 2009 – Cisco today announced plans to grow, motivate and evolve its global community of data center channel partners and customers to further accelerate the market transition toward virtualized data centers.  Cisco introduced several channel programs designed to help partners gain new revenue opportunities and evolve their businesses toward a unified data center practice.  To meet the growing need for information technology (IT) skills that span the full spectrum of data center technologies, Cisco introduced two new IT career certifications.  Cisco also announced an expansion of the Unified Computing System Family with the new C-Series of Rack-Mount Servers designed to help accelerate the adoption of unified computing and data center virtualization solutions. 

Key Facts/Highlights:

Cisco announces new channel programs for its expanding data center partner channel

  • To motivate channel partners to invest in building a unified data center practice, Cisco has expanded its existing Value Incentive Program (VIP) offering for all of Cisco's data center technologies, including unified computing, storage networking, and WAN optimization, as well as for its existing offering for data center switching. VIP is Cisco's flagship profitability program that rewards partners for investing in architecture practices around collaboration, data center virtualization and borderless networks.
  • Cisco also announced the new Data Center Channel Solutions Program, designed to help enable and accelerate the sale of tested, validated reference IT solution designs that incorporate products from industry-leading data center vendors, including EMC, Microsoft, NetApp, Red Hat, and VMware. 
  • Cisco today announced it is opening the Unified Computing opportunity to a broader range of its channel partner community. Cisco is announcing an Authorized Partner Program (APP) to support the new Unified Computing C-Series Rack-Mount Servers.  All Cisco DCNI Specialized Partners will be able to sell the new rack-mount servers after completing online training  and exam from Cisco.  
  • The Cisco Advanced Data Center Network Infrastructure Specialization (DCNI) is the fastest-ramping specialization in Cisco's history.   Despite the economic downturn, partners have rapidly invested in the specialization since its launch a year ago because of its strategic significance to their business.  

Expansion of the Unified Computing System Family to include the C-Series Rack-Mount Servers

  • Cisco announced a product line extension to the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) with the addition of a new form factor, the C-Series Rack-Mount Servers.
  • The Cisco UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Servers extend the standards-based innovation, reduced total cost and increased business agility of the Unified Computing System to customers who require rack-mount servers; together with the UCS blade servers, Cisco's Unified Computing System addresses the broad spectrum compute requirements for next-generation data centers.   
  • The UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Servers will offer several innovations including:
    • Access to unified fabric through a low-latency lossless 10-gigabits-per-second Ethernet foundation that enables a "wire-once" deployment model.
    • Cisco patented memory extension technology that yields more than 2.5 times the addressable memory of currently available two-socket rack-mount platforms; this provides the ability to support significantly more virtual machines per server and to deliver the scalability to run large memory applications.
    • Cisco virtualized adapter that provides adapter consolidation and virtualization optimization capabilities by enabling each virtualized adapter to define up to 128 Ethernet or Fibre Channel connections.
  • Based on Intel Xeon 5500 series processors, Cisco UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Servers will adapt processor performance to application demands and intelligently scale energy use based on utilization. 
  • The Cisco C-Series Rack-Mount Servers are scheduled to be available in the fourth quarter of calendar year 2009.

Cisco Announces New IT Career Certifications in Data Center Management:

  • A study conducted by Forrester Consulting found that 65 percent of IT managers surveyed indicated that within the next five years, technical certification would be somewhat or absolutely critical in determining whether an individual should be assigned responsibilities in a network operations control, a central data center role.
  • Cisco today announced two new IT individual certifications targeted at customers and channel partners with job roles such as data center architect, data center builder, and data center technical operations professional.
  • The new individual certifications, Cisco Data Center Unified Computing Design Specialist and the Cisco Data Center Unified Computing Support Specialist, build on foundational skills including storage networking, data center networking infrastructure, data center application services and virtualization.   These certifications validate design and support expertise across multiple data center technologies that make up the unified computing architecture.
  • Cisco is committed to the development of skilled IT professionals as part of its Learning@Cisco program.  Information about courseware and exams is scheduled to be available from Learning@Cisco in the third quarter of calendar year 2009 at

Supporting Quotes:

  • Edison Peres, senior vice president, Worldwide Channels Go-To-Market Group for Cisco:
  • "Despite the economic downturn, our channel partners share Cisco's vision and excitement around data center virtualization.  Together with our partners, we will lead the market transition toward data center virtualization and unified computing."

  • Prem Jain, senior vice president, Server and Access Virtualization business unit for Cisco:
  • "Cisco's comprehensive Unified Computing System architecture allows us to easily offer new form factors that respond quickly to our customers' needs. With the UCS C-Series Rack-Mount Servers, we are opening the Unified Computing opportunity to a broader range of our channel partner community while providing our customers a migration path to the unified computing approach of the future."

Partner Quotes:

  • Bob Olwig, vice president, Corporate Business Development, World Wide Technology:
  • "The expansion of the Cisco Data Center Channel Program embraces the innovative Unified Computing architecture to offer us an opportunity to build on our existing end-to-end Data Center practice. In a rapidly changing data center marketplace, the Unified Computing C-Series Rack-Mount Server will provide us new services opportunities and a unique on-ramp that appeals to a wider range of our customers that are planning to integrate Unified Computing into their existing data centers."

  • Kent MacDonald, vice president, Network Services, Long View Systems:
  • "Virtualization is a proven technology delivering 'more for less' and continues to change the market by helping our customers maximize the utilization of their data center investment. Cisco's Unified Computing architecture and product portfolio can integrate seamlessly within our customers' existing data center designs to deliver dramatic new efficiencies and savings. Long View Systems is proud to be partnered with Cisco, and excited to see that Cisco has expanded their Unified Computing System into a Rack-Mount Server which will map to a greater number of our customers whose Data Centers are evolving into more highly-virtualized environments."

Supporting Resources: