Q&A with Pete Manca of Egenera - Page 2
VSM: Now that Egenera has successfully made the transition to a software company, what makes the company different from others in the industry?
PM: Companies that we work with require flexibility in their data center, automation of key management tasks and reliability in their IT infrastructure, especially as it relates to mission-critical applications. They need rapid provisioning and repurposing of hardware capacity to run either physical servers and/or virtual host servers. PAN is their management software solution for their physical infrastructure.
We’ve also found from experience that Egenera must provide open and multi-brand platform support. This heterogeneous solution rejects the vendor lock-in that is fundamental to other solutions, yet PAN Manager provides openness while delivering all of the simplicity and more functionality.
Additionally, Egenera provides a disaster recovery automation that is second to none. Regardless of physical/virtual software, I/O, storage or networking, PAN Manager can recover from outages with a single click. This not only restores the environment exactly with server, network and storage configurations and policies, but also allows the customer to customize their recovery process through the ability to prioritize applications and set boot order.
VSM: How is Egenera helping its large base of SaaS customers in the cloud?
PM: Today, about 35 percent of our customer base is a “cloud” service provider with the vast majority of these providers delivering software as a service (SaaS). For these organizations, the mantra they live by, their lifeblood, their differentiation or competitive advantage is the quality of the service they deliver.
These organizations wake up every day with three clear goals: Make sure the service is available, ensure that capacity of the service meets or exceeds the demand and guarantee that user response time is acceptable.
The need to focus on quality of service is a lesson SaaS providers have learned time and again. SaaS vendors today are operating under the assumption that failures will and do occur. As a result, they have moved aggressively to institute measures to improve quality of service along the three key vectors of the business. We help our cloud customers manage their risk along all three of these vectors.
VSM: How does quality of service relate to the service level agreements required by the business?
PM: As everyone knows, in October RIM’s BlackBerry service went down after a core switch failed in its email and web services infrastructure. In total, RIM’s service was down for about two days, yet in its most recent earnings report, RIM announced that it will be taking over half a billion dollars in charges related to the failures in its services this fiscal year. Customers have come to expect fast, “always on” services and because of that, companies have to provide guarantee reliability.
Egenera takes a holistic approach to enabling reliable IT. With PAN Manager, customers can replicate their primary site quickly, exactly and consistently – right down to the smallest detail. This fast, repeatable and verifiable recovery means that organizations can be certain they can reduce the risk and impact of infrastructure failures.