IBM DataCenter Modernization Meetup

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Join IBM and Brocade SME speakers Thursday August 15th to learn about the exciting trends in Virtual Tape, Enterprise data Extension and why Flash and NVMe are driving the need for DataCenter Modernization.

Date: Thursday August 15th
Time: 1:00 to 4:30 Followed by Happy Hour
Location: Brookview Golf Club Event Center
316 Brookview Parkway S
Golden Valley, MN 55426

Sessions:
What’s new in IBM TS7700 Virtual Tape: Toy Phouybanhdyt – IBM
Cover features and the functions of TS7700 R4.1.2 and TS7700 R2 that will help reduce the TS7700 storage capacity utilization as well as reducing the network bandwidth without spending much effort, and to utilize the cloud as an extension of the TS7700 grid to store long term retention and cold data.

Brocade SAN Extension & Network Mgmt.: Tim Jeka – Broadcom
IBM/Brocade Extension platforms can support all long distance data replication. Today’s platforms provide the stability and performance needed for storage over distance solutions. Learn how today’s platforms support both FCIP and IPEX (IP Extension), transports for Block/File/Object storage solutions.

IBM Flash, Data Modernization & Cloud strategies: Matt Key – IBM
See how IBM Flash enables data modernization, hybrid cloud, and some other unique strategies across customer bases. “Using Flash to lower costs, lower risks, and increase corporate value.”

Brocade FC and NVMe enhances Data Modernization: Tim Jeka – Broadcom
With today’s data growth and the advent of NVMe arrays, the storage network is critical to ensure optimum performance from storage, otherwise, bottlenecks move into the network. IBM/Brocade Gen 6 SANs are the proven modern infrastructure ready for NVMe storage today and as it evolves. Prepare your datacenter and take advantage of new technology strategies

Thoughts from Microsoft Inspire

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By Michael Downs, Chief Technology Officer

This week, Susanna Woods, Evolving Solutions’s director of sales, and I attended Microsoft’s Inspire partner conference. It was the first time Evolving Solutions has attended the conference and it reflects our continuing commitment to deliver hybrid cloud solutions to our clients.

Public cloud is not new news, but I believe we’ve reached a new phase of public cloud maturity. Each of the top cloud providers (Microsoft’s Azure, AWS, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and IBM) has transitioned from evangelism to steady growth. The push by each provider to get client workloads, particularly data, onto their platform is certainly a continued theme. The conference was a great opportunity to better understand how Microsoft is innovating and continuing to differentiate their offerings.

Microsoft’s investments in Azure were readily apparent, as was their continued focus on Data and AI. They continue to lower the barrier to using advanced data capabilities, creating options, but also requiring important considerations on which platform is the best for an individual business. One of the most interesting items showcased was how Microsoft is using what they are learning from their Xbox and gaming business and incorporating it into their ability to make decisions on massive volumes of live data. Incorporating that with their investment in Mixed Reality through solutions like Hololens and Azure Spatial Anchors (provides persistence of a virtual world in the physical world) present several extremely interesting opportunities for innovation.

Of course, it’s not possible to get the business value from any of this innovation without adopting Modern Operations, the practices to ensure your end users and consumers get the experience they expect and need. I’m excited about some of the new Azure capabilities that provide components of this and I’m looking forward to the options they provide for our clients. If you have any questions about the conference or how you can continue to move forward in your cloud journey, feel free to reach out to me.


Michael joined Evolving Solutions in 2014 to develop solutions for our clients across hardware and software, both on and off premise. He brings over 18 years of creating architectures to solve complex business problems including big data, high performance computing, integration, automation and end user computing.

His broad technology, business and industry experience provides valuable perspective to our clients working to implement innovative technologies to support their success.

Like what you read? Follow Michael on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/mldowns/

NetApp’s Channel Connect Conference Did Not Disappoint

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NetApp held their third annual Channel Connect Conference (C3) from June 5-6, 2019 in San Diego, California.  I was fortunate enough to attend on behalf of the Evolving Solutions team.  This was also my third time attending, and I learn more every time regarding NetApp’s hybrid cloud strategy, key partnerships and technology advancements.

During the event, a lot of time was spent discussing NetApp’s data fabric solutions and message, and how this ties perfectly into a client’s cloud strategy.  From being able to leverage on-premise NetApp solutions, to extending the data fabric to public cloud providers like Azure and AWS, NetApp is “all in” on enabling a seamless experience.  This is a critical technological advantage, as the data suggests that by 2025, the majority of IT buyers will be Millennials and Gen Z buyers.  They are looking for a seamless, integrated, and cost-effective approach to managing their technology environments.

During the event, we heard from key alliance partners including Nvidia, Cisco, Microsoft (Azure) and Lenovo.  These partnerships are driving innovations in the areas of machine learning, artificial intelligence, converged platforms, public cloud, Kubernetes, etc.

The absolute highlight of the conference was hearing from Kate Swanborg, senior vice president of Technology Communications and Strategic Alliances at DreamWorks.  Kate shared an exciting and informative overview of the tight partnership between DreamWorks and NetApp.  Kate has been quoted as saying:  “NetApp is the leader in hybrid cloud data services.  Having used NetApp solutions on all of our CG animated feature films, DreamWorks trusts NetApp to deliver the data services our filmmakers rely on to innovate today and tomorrow, as they unleash creativity and dream new realities.”

Another highlight of the conference was seizing the opportunity to meet many of the NetApp local account executives, solution architects, subject matter experts, managers and executives.  Over 1,500 NetApp employees were also in San Diego for training.  It was a great opportunity to have both the NetApp and channel team members in one place hearing the same messages together.  Be on the lookout for announcements around new all-flash solutions, cloud enhancements, etc. in the coming days.

The best quote of the conference was originally said by Mark Twain over 100 years ago, but is extremely relevant in today’s constantly changing technology landscape:  “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”  The Evolving Solutions team is well down our hybrid cloud journey, and we look forward to continuing to drive innovation with NetApp for our clients.


Bo Gebbie joined Evolving Solutions in January, 2017 as the Vice President of Sales, Services and Marketing. In this role, he is responsible for the sales, pre-sales services, post-sales consulting and marketing pillars within the organization. He is a member of the Executive and Management Teams, and represents the organization externally on vendor and partner Advisory Councils.

Before joining Evolving Solutions, Bo was an IBM executive, serving last as Vice President of Server Solution Sales, North America. In that role, he had sales and profit responsibility for a $3B portfoilio across Power Systems, z Systems and the Server Linux brands. Prior to that, Bo was the Business Unit Executive, Power Systems Sales, North America.

Like what you read? Follow Bo on LinkedIn.

Minnesota HashiCorp User Group

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THE CLOUD OPERATING MODEL, SERVICE MESH, & CONSUL

Join us for a special conversation around cloud enablement in conjunction with Optum on Thursday, April 25 at 4:30pm.

Organizations have a variety of options when it comes to choosing the infrastructure that runs their applications— cloud, private infrastructure, and third-party services. Embracing cloud and multi-cloud requires organizations to rethink their approach to provisioning, securing, and connecting their infrastructure. Static data relies on static fleet of standardized infrastructure, provisioned for long periods of time, and dedicated to users. Dynamic infrastructure now consists of heterogeneous infrastructure, frequently provisioned, short lived, and automated provisioning on-demand. Learn how Consul enables one workflow to connect any application across any infrastructure.

We look forward to seeing you.

Key Takeaways from IBM Think 2019

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By Bo Gebbie, Vice President, Sales, Services and Marketing

During the week of February 11, IBM hosted IBM Think 2019 in San Francisco, CA.  In addition to Think, the annual IBM PartnerWorld Conference was also held during the same time.  Hosting these events together saw almost 30,000 attendees descend on San Francisco for the week.

Evolving Solutions had several team members and clients attend the event.  It was an outstanding opportunity to learn about IBM’s 2019 strategic imperatives, new solution announcements and new channel program enhancements.  Additionally, the event afforded us the opportunity to network with hundreds of clients and IBMers from across the country.

As I reflect back on Think, there were several key take-aways for me.

  • Hybrid Cloud is where it’s at. According to the IBM Institute for Business Value, clients are already using between two to 15 clouds.  These environments might be on-premise or in the public cloud.  As the number of cloud silos continue to grow, clients need an easier way to connect the applications, no matter where the data resides.  During Think, the IBM Cloud Integration Platform was announced.  This platform is “designed to securely connect applications, software and services from any vendor regardless of whether those systems are on-premises, in a public cloud or a private cloud,” according to IBM.
  • Data.  Data. Data.  According to IBM CEO Ginny Rometty, “only 20% of the world’s data is searchable.”  Applications such as Office365, CRM, expense management, etc. were the “easy apps” to get into the cloud.  There is 80% of data out there that is critical to an organization’s overall success.  Those core systems will be the focus of the next era.  How do clients utilize that data to make gather meaningful business insights, and make-real time decisions?  IBM is placing big bets on “the next 80%” to help grow its solution portfolio.
  • Artificial Intelligence will transform how we all work. Many people still think of AI as something you would see in a Sci-Fi movie.  But, according to Rometty and several executives we spoke with, AI will be embedded in applications or layered on top of them in the future.  AI will enable new or improved business processes.  AI will enable every single person to do their job in a more efficient or data-led way.  AI will not replace jobs; rather it will augment how we do work.  I like the theory, and look forward to seeing how this plays out over time.
  • Red Hat is key to IBM’s future. The IBM executives could not say a ton about the Red Hat acquisition, since the deal has not closed yet. But, every single IBMer was excited for what Red Hat can bring to IBM in terms of new client opportunity, innovating the product stack and keeping IBM relevant to the next generation of buyers.
  • Holy moly, the Moscone Center is huge. One of my non-business learnings is that the Moscone Center in downtown San Francisco is enormous.  It is no small feat to fit tens of thousands of people into one place!

Over the next few months, we will have Evolving Solutions team members at several of our other strategic partners’ premier conferences.  We will share our insights from those events on our blog.

I am looking forward to returning to San Fran next May for Think 2020.  Hope to see you there!

Bo Gebbie joined Evolving Solutions in January, 2017 as the Vice President of Sales, Services and Marketing. In this role, he is responsible for the sales, pre-sales services, post-sales consulting and marketing pillars within the organization. He is a member of the Executive and Management Teams, and represents the organization externally on vendor and partner Advisory Councils.

Before joining Evolving Solutions, Bo was an IBM executive, serving last as Vice President of Server Solution Sales, North America. In that role, he had sales and profit responsibility for a $3B portfoilio across Power Systems, z Systems and the Server Linux brands. Prior to that, Bo was the Business Unit Executive, Power Systems Sales, North America.

Like what you read? Follow Bo on LinkedIn.