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IBM® Flex System™ is a new platform technology that was introduced for organizations that are deploying IT for emerging data center applications, such as cloud computing, Big Data, Analytics, Technical computing, and Smarter Planet®. IBM Flex System combines advances in processor, memory, networking, storage, and management technologies such that they are integrated into a single, cohesive system. This system provides an efficient platform for addressing data center challenges for capacity, flexibility, scalability, reliability, and IT acquisition and maintenance costs.
There are several solutions available in the marketplace today for people who want to create private cloud infrastructures. Starting from the infrastructure layer, some vendors are providing “fully integrated” solutions with preselected components for almost all layers in the cloud.
For example, IBM provides the BladeCenter® Foundation for Cloud, which is reference architecture for creating a private cloud infrastructure by using the IBM BladeCenter, Intel processor-based BladeCenter servers, disk storage for virtual image repositories, integrated networking with 10 Gbps Ethernet and Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) switches, and the IBM SmartCloud™ Entry software stack for virtualization and platform management.
Although fully integrated solutions might address the needs of certain customers, the other end of the market segment is interested in creating their own private cloud infrastructures by integrating the piece parts. The IBM Flex System provides all of the components that are necessary for creating the cloud, including compute, networking, storage, and management software. In this paper, we describe how to integrate a custom private cloud infrastructure solution by using the IBM Flex System.
This IBM Redpaper™ is intended for customers and IBM Business Partners who are creating custom private cloud infrastructures and looking for various hardware and software options that are available from IBM. This paper also provides a technical overview of the IBM Flex System components for cloud infrastructure architects and hardware integration specialists.
Table of contents
Private cloud requirements
IBM PureFlex System
IBM Flex System
Cloud reference architecture with Flex System
Compute node choices in the Flex System
Cloud management software
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