The Dell XC Series train rolls on with new offerings that expand workload possibilities

Today, during the Nutanix .NEXT partner and customer conference in Miami, we’re excited to announce the next wave of the Dell XC Series of Web-scale Converged Appliances and features with planned availability this Q3. These latest technologies demonstrate how Dell and Nutanix are accelerating our joint product development program and adding to our portfolio of hyper-converged solutions.

Dell XC Series appliances are integrated with Dell’s latest server technology and based on software from Nutanix, the undisputed hyper-converged market leader according to IDC. They are backed by Dell Global Services and Support and have been enthusiastically received by our customers with hundreds of appliances shipped globally in six months since their debut. Now, we’re expanding our family of XC Series solutions to address an even broader set of applications and use cases. Reflecting the trend toward hyper-converged architectures and what we’re hearing from our customers, we’re confident that more workloads will benefit from our new capabilities.

For example, adoption of Linux KVM, the open source hypervisor, is gaining traction due to its advantages in terms of cost, security and adaptability. As a result, many data centers have more than one hypervisor in their environments and are looking for KVM support from their infrastructure supplier. Adding to our existing support for ESX-i and Hyper-V environments, today we’re announcing support for the native Nutanix Linux KVM hypervisor, and the new, open platform for virtualization and application mobility announced today, Nutanix Acropolis. This will enable customers to deploy XC Series appliance clusters in multi-hypervisor environments and manage them with Nutanix Prism, the new, highly intuitive and uncompromisingly simple management interface for all three hypervisors.   

In addition to greater flexibility, the underlying customer benefit is the ability to offer customers an “invisible infrastructure” through Nutanix’ next generation Xtreme Computing Platform (XCP). The basic concept is that customers can minimize a large amount of staff time needed for actual infrastructure management with the ease inherent in Nutanix software. Fundamentally, the new platform’s greatest value resides in the overall simplicity and ability to free up time to focus on more valuable tasks, such as building and delivering new IT services, instead of day-to-day infrastructure management. 

Additionally, data growth and the cost of managing this data continue to be one of the most significant challenges facing IT organizations. Our announcements today also include the introduction of a Nutanix Linux KVM Lite-Compute node, also planned for Q3, which enables cost-effective capacity expansion of an XC Series cluster running any hypervisor without having to add the cost of compute and like-hypervisor resources unnecessarily. It also offers more precise workload-specific sizing and more efficient use of compute and hypervisor resources. The Lite-Compute node will leverage Nutanix Linux KVM and Nutanix Acropolis, to run in an XC cluster with ESX-i, Hyper-V or Nutanix KVM.

We also plan to release new Dell XC730-16G and the XC430-4 appliances. The XC730-16G is our first XC appliance designed to work with Nvidia graphics processing units (GPUs), often a key element of virtual desktop deployments. It can support one or two Nvidia GRID K1 or K2 GPUs to deliver improved graphics performance for all virtualized desktops running image-intensive applications. The new XC430-4 is a full-featured, Nutanix-powered appliance in a short-depth 1U footprint that is ideal for remote and branch offices, tactical military and other deployments that use short depth racks. Compared to our current 1U XC630-10 appliance, the XC430-4 requires approximately 20% less rack depth – 24” versus 30” – making it an ideal solution for these environments.

These are just a few of the new appliances and capabilities we plan to introduce for the XC Series this year. As you can see, since first shipping the XC Series only six months ago, Dell and Nutanix are accelerating their efforts to introduce new features and appliances that offer substantial enhancements and expanded capabilities for a broader set of hyper-scale customers. We will continue to evolve the XC Series as we move forward together with our customers. As always, we are interested in knowing more about how XC series appliances are being used and would love to hear your feedback! To stay updated, follow @Dell_Storage on Twitter. 

About the Author: Travis Vigil

Travis Vigil is Senior Vice President leading Portfolio and Product Management for Dell’s Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG). He and his team are responsible for the Product, Offer and APEX (as-a-Service) Roadmap for Dell’s Server, Storage, Data Protection, CI/HCI, Networking, and Solutions portfolios. He has over 20 years of Product Management, Marketing and Business Operations experience with technology companies including Dell and Intel. In previous roles at Dell, he served as Senior Vice President for Storage & Data Protection Product Management, and Senior Vice President for Business Operations focused on Dell’s Server, Storage and Networking Business with commercial customers. He has a B.S. from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.