12 Jan How is a hyperconverged platform managed?
Over the past few years, the IT industry has noted an issue with something that could be called ‘management sprawl.’ Not in terms of business (although that happens too!) but in terms of the portals for managing a given technology. There was a period of time where every little item had its own management console, leading to confusion about where and how to manage things.
Important information was often overlooked, due to infrequent access to certain consoles. In response to this, there’s been a push towards unified management that has been characterized by the brilliant idea gone cringe worthy buzzword – “single pane of glass.”
Hyperconvergence, by it’s very nature, pulls disparate systems together. It would make sense, then, that the platform would provide a unified interface where all things related to the platform could be seen, analyzed, and acted upon. Hyperconvergence vendors have accomplished this in one of two ways, and one isn’t necessarily better than the other. The first way is to create a console from scratch where everything related to the platform is managed. There are both large and small players in the industry who have created a proprietary management UI. This could be a good decision due to the fact that they aren’t bound by another vendor’s decisions, and they are free to do whatever they please. The second way is to plug in to the primary hypervisor management interface such as vCenter, System Center Virtual Machine Manager, or the like. This method of management comes with the advantage that the foundation for the interface doesn’t have to be created from scratch; it’s also a familiar interface to an administrator who has not dealt with hyperconvergence before. Plugging directly into vCenter/SCVMM and allowing the administrator to use that console may provide an added level of comfort and a flattened learning curve. With either option, managing virtual machines, backup and replication, cloning, and more from the same console is to be expected with a hyperconverged platform.