News Release

Chinese University of Hong Kong Transforms Its IT Infrastructure With Cisco Data Center Business Advantage Architecture for Operational and Economic Advantages

Cloud-Ready Data Center to Meet Need for Streamlined Management and Flexible Provisioning of Computer Resources
Apr 27, 2011

HONG KONG, April 21, 2011 – Cisco today announced that the Chinese University of Hong Kong has become the first university in Hong Kong to deploy Cisco® Data Center Business Advantage architecture, a next-generation virtual network system that comprises Cisco Nexus® switches and the Cisco Unified Computing SystemTM for faster and more flexible provisioning of computer resources for students and staff.

With a view to streamlining data center management and accommodating the need for faster provisioning of computer resources and more computing power for academic users, especially in the fields of medical and scientific research, the university's Information Technology Services Centre realized the need to transform the IT infrastructure, and the effective approach was to centralize and virtualize the computer network and computing resources. The solution was based on Cisco's Data Center Business Advantage architecture, a virtual network system that also enables a well-provisioned private cloud platform. 


  • The Information Technology Services Centre has deployed an end-to-end Cisco Data Center Business Advantage architecture incorporating the Cisco Nexus 7000, Nexus 5000, Nexus 2000 and Nexus 1000V Series Switches together with the Cisco Unified Computing System. These provide a number of innovative and powerful technologies such as Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), Cisco Extended Memory technology and Cisco service profiles, which bring operational and economic advantages.
  • Reducing operational costs with system consolidation and virtualization. The new Nexus switch architecture and FCoE technology help reduce the number of Ethernet and Fibre Channel switches by up to 50 percent, saving up to 80 percent of the cabling and rack space required by a traditional data center. By breaking down IT silos and creating virtual network and computing resources, the Information Technology Services Centre spreads its energy needs and cooling expenses throughout the data center and expects to further reduce its energy consumption and cooling costs. In addition, with a virtualized network and data center available to the whole university as a service, all departments and units will find it easier to control their annual operating costs.
  • Gaining flexible provisioning to address future needs. To cope with the increasing demand for computing power brought by the upcoming Education Reform in Hong Kong, the Cisco Nexus "wire once" approach and the use of Cisco Unified Computing System service profiles have dramatically reduced the lead time for provisioning applications and services. Work that used to take weeks or days can now be completed in minutes. As a result, the IT team can match the growth in research and education demands driven by the Education Reform. A forward-thinking university, the Chinese University of Hong Kong is the pioneer among local universities in realizing the importance of cloud computing and establishing a Cloud Computing Division. The university has deployed a private cloud platform supported by Cisco's Data Center Business Advantage architecture to allocate computer resources to applications. Cloud services already available include web-based university administration applications and a document-management system for administrative use.
  • Unleashing the power of staff. The deployment of the Cisco Data Center Business Advantage architecture by the Chinese University of Hong Kong demonstrates the new role of information technology. By reshaping IT processes and shifting resources to allow for cross-skills training of the IT team, the Information Technology Services Centre is unleashing the tremendous potential of virtual computing by enabling staff to work on higher-value projects and providing career progression opportunities.

Supporting Quotes

  • CH Cheng, associate director (infrastructure) of Information Technology Services Centre
  • "Our users have high expectations of our data center infrastructure. They want faster and more flexible provisioning as well as lower cost. It's very important to select a solution which can integrate all the main components including the network, the servers, the storage and the backup. Reliability, scalability, ease of automation and also tight integration were the main criteria when we selected the data centre infrastructure platform."

  • Barbara Chiu, general manager, Cisco Hong Kong and Macau
  • "Cisco is delighted to see the deployment of Cisco Data Center Business Advantage architecture and the way it transforms the Chinese University of Hong Kong's IT infrastructure and manageability. More than just enabling the private cloud, we look forward to seeing the university develop the potential of the architecture. The university sets a good example of cloud platform utilization for the educational sector, and for Hong Kong as a whole. As network needs become more pervasive, we believe more and more organizations will start transforming their IT infrastructure and developing their own cloud platforms to further enhance their competitiveness in the market."

Supporting Resources:

Tags / Keywords:

Cisco, Cisco Unified Computing System, Cisco Nexus switches, Nexus 7000, Nexus 5000,  Nexus 2000, Nexus 1000V, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Data Center, Infrastructure-as-a-Service, IaaS, Information Technology Services Centre, Private Cloud, Software-as-a-Service, SaaS