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Cloudonomics Authors: Lori MacVittie, Skytap Blog, David H Deans, Shelly Palmer, Tim Crawford

Related Topics: Private Cloud

Private Cloud: News Feed Item

Reflex Systems Enables Self-Service Virtual Infrastructure Management With Its 'Private Cloud Initiative'

Infor and The Schwan Food Company Among First Reflex Customers to Leverage Reflex for Private Cloud Initiative

ATLANTA, GA and SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (Marketwire) -- 08/30/10 -- (VMworld) - Reflex Systems, a pioneer in virtualization systems management solutions, today unveiled its Private Cloud Initiative, a bold new vision that helps enterprise IT staff deliver the power of self-service to virtual infrastructure. While cloud computing has long held the promise of simplification for the end-user, Reflex's Private Cloud Initiative provides greater simplification and ease of management for the IT staff tasked with building private clouds for their end users to leverage.

Enterprises across many industries have been eager to harness the power, ease-of-use and cost-saving benefits of cloud computing, but not every enterprise can use a public cloud, due to security, regulatory or other issues. Enterprises are increasingly turning to virtualization to help them realize the potential of privately-managed clouds, but to date have lacked the people and resources to manage these clouds in-house. The Reflex Private Cloud Initiative makes it possible for end-users to enjoy the self-service aspects of private clouds by drastically simplifying the backend management of these clouds.

A survey of over 350 IT managers, released today, found that issues such as capacity planning, performance and provisioning consume significant resources when enterprises are attempting to leverage virtualization for private clouds. The Reflex Private Cloud Initiative enables enterprises to create fully-functional internal cloud infrastructure. Key building blocks include:

  • Dynamic infrastructure enablement, including provisioning, configuration management and capacity planning.
  • Visualization, to improve performance, simplify troubleshooting and enable asset tracking and billing.
  • Security and dynamic policy enforcement, to ensure regulatory compliance across both the physical and virtual infrastructure.
  • Ability to easily connect with public clouds, for seamless policy enforcement no matter where machines are hosted.

"Enterprises are expressing increasing interest in leveraging private clouds, but are struggling with the challenges of deploying and managing the virtual infrastructure to support these initiatives," said Rachel Chalmers, Research Director, Infrastructure Management for The 451 Group. "Reflex's Private Cloud Initiative brings together technologies and best practices to make it as easy for IT to build and manage private clouds as it is for end-users to use them."

As part of the Private Cloud Initiative, Reflex today also unveiled the following additional capabilities within Reflex Virtualization Management Center (Reflex VMC). Reflex VMC and its integrated vWatch, vTrust and vProfile technologies, provides overall declarative data center management and automation by correlating infrastructure configuration changes, network services and security events for performance impact. Reflex VMC now includes the following additional functionality to enable enterprises to build out private clouds:

  • Cloud portal integration and extension
    • An extension of the Reflex API enables private cloud providers to surface Reflex functionality to their end users, for increased self-service.
    • User interface enables segmentation by tenant, for both broad, policy-based as well as fine-grain control to manage IT resources in the virtual infrastructure.
  • Easy integration and increased script automation
    • Reusable plug-ins, which can be written by the user, Reflex, or third parties, can be used from either the user interface, web service API or triggered by policy-based event in the enterprise.
    • Simplified VQL (Virtualization Query Language) queries that can be saved, reused, and exported for ease of use.
    • Ease of integration into other third-party IT management and orchestration systems.
  • Networking management and visibility
    • Integration with physical networking infrastructure to manage configuration and compliance for the purpose of virtualization.
    • Visual network mapping, providing physical-to-virtual networking visibility.
    • Flow analysis for virtual environments, with the ability to feed this data into a company's existing enterprise flow analysis tools.
  • Storage management and visibility
    • Visual mapping of storage for virtual machines, data stores and storage connections.
    • Monitoring of storage usage and capacity, to efficiently utilize shared resources.
    • Storage reclamation based on user definable criteria, enabling higher utilization and cost savings.
    • Policy-based storage allocation, to automate allocation of storage to virtual machines, hosts, and clusters.

Reflex's Private Cloud Initiative capabilities will be further refined in a series of product releases over the coming twelve months that will enhance automation, provisioning and management of private clouds.

"IT realizes that not only are end users demanding cloud-based services, but if done right, these services can also save them significant time and money. You will continue to see Reflex evolve our technology aggressively, to continue to make it simpler, easier and faster for enterprises to build up their private clouds," said Pete Privateer, CEO of Reflex. "We are excited to be working with customers and partners to deliver on a vision of a ubiquitous cloud infrastructure that is as easy to manage on the back-end as it is for users on the front-end."

Large Enterprises Embrace the Private Cloud Initiative

Reflex customer The Schwan Food Company, a multibillion dollar frozen food company, is leveraging Reflex to help enable their vision of applications delivered in a private cloud. "We require a high level of security and manageability in order to deliver cloud-based applications to our users," said Cory Miller, senior IT operations manager for Schwan. "We needed a solution that enables us to enforce policies and holistically manage our virtual infrastructure with a high level of granularity and visibility into that infrastructure. We view Reflex as a true partner in helping us deliver on this vision."

"The ability to both secure and manage our virtual infrastructure, to meet our compliance needs, was crucial in our decision to purchase Reflex," said Lee Marks, Director of Cyber Security, SaaS Systems for Infor, the leading provider of business software for mid-market companies, with over 70,000 customers worldwide. "As we continue to expand our use of virtualization, both on premise and in the cloud, we wanted a partner that could grow with us and support our audit and compliance needs, no matter where our virtual machines and data reside. Reflex's Private Cloud Initiative aligns well with that vision, and we have found a true partner in helping us handle regulatory compliance across our environment."

Partner Ecosystem Delivering Joint Solutions

Several industry leaders have embraced Reflex technology to deliver joint solutions. They join existing technology partners such as Savvis, CSC and Cisco, to help deliver on the technology and solutions required to simplify the creation of private clouds.

Reflex has partnered with HP to help organizations secure virtual networks with the same technology used for physical networks. The collaboration integrates Reflex's Virtualization Management Center (VMC) solution with the HP TippingPoint Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) to provide customers with comprehensive security, visibility and performance across both physical and virtual infrastructures.

Reflex and Arista networks are partnering to provide customers with seamless management, infrastructure, security and network policy enforcement and automation within the virtualized data center, leveraging Reflex VMC and Arista VM Tracer™.

"Cloud computing is no longer limited to public cloud providers, it is becoming ubiquitous, a simple and flexible choice of operating model," said Douglas Gourlay, vice president of marketing at Arista Networks. "Enterprises are looking to build out these capabilities internally yet struggle with building an adaptive network infrastructure. Arista, in close partnership with Reflex's management and security solution for virtual environments, provides end-to-end visibility, control, and virtual security -- advancing the capabilities delivered through the Private Cloud Initiative."

For more information, join Reflex and Arista at booth #838 at VMWorld for a brief presentation on Tuesday at 2:00pm PT.

For more information on the Reflex capabilities, please visit http://www.reflexsystems.com/Products/VMC or http://blog.reflexsystems.com.

About Reflex
Reflex Systems is the industry leader in virtualization systems management solutions that integrate security, compliance, audit and management of the virtual environment. Reflex VMC (Virtualization Management Center) provides visibility, correlation, and automation through a single pane of glass. Purpose-built for virtualization, VMC provides the essential tools needed to manage and enforce dynamic infrastructure policy in virtualized data centers and in private/public cloud. Reflex VMC, in conjunction with vWatch, vTrust, and vProfile, provides infrastructure discovery and visualization, timeline-based management, application/services discovery, network security, performance, configuration management and dynamic policy enforcement. Reflex Systems is based in Atlanta, Georgia and is privately held. For more information, including a trial download of Reflex VMC, visit www.reflexsystems.com. Follow Reflex at http://twitter.com/ReflexSystems and The vCurve Blog: blog.reflexsystems.com.

Reflex Systems is a registered trademark of Reflex Systems LLC. All other marks are property of their respective owners.

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