September 18, 2017
The fourth quarter of the calendar year is just ahead, and we can now start turning out attention to 2018. The coming year is certain to hold a few surprises and changes to the IT landscape. Notably, Cisco has announced their intention to acquire Springpath, Inc., for $320 Million. This Sunnyvale-based software developer specializes in hyperconvergence software solutions and is no stranger to Cisco. The two companies have actually partnered together since early 2016 to develop and release Cisco’s hyperconverged infrastructure solution, the HyperFlex. So, in some ways, this acquisition is no surprise, and some industry experts were expecting this acquisition long before the announcement.
Most importantly, this intended acquisition is a clear statement as to Cisco’s plans for the HyperFlex and their confidence in the hyperconverged strategy.
What is Hyperconvergence?
Hyperconvergence is a radically different approach to the data center. The hypervisor, server, and storage device, which are usually their own distinct pieces of equipment, are merged into a single device. This all-purpose device is known as a node, and to scale a hyperconverged data center, the company merely needs to purchase additional nodes.
These interconnected nodes are then controlled by a single piece of software. For this reason, the hyperconverged data center has sometimes been describes as the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC). Storage, compute, and the virtual machines are all administered and supported by the same application.
Read more about this topic in our blog, “The Ins and Outs of Hyperconvergence.”
Building upon the HyperFlex 2.0
There’s an extra layer of context to understand when looking at this acquisition. The Cisco Springpath acquisition comes on the heels of another HyperFlex announcement. In February 2017, Cisco also unveiled the HyperFlex 2.0, which represents an important refinement of the technology. All of the capabilities and benefits that made HyperFlex a success upon launch remain in the second iteration of the technology, but now HyperFlex is available with built-in flash storage, 40 Gbps 3rdGeneration UCS fabric networking, among other advances.
Learn more about the HyperFlex 2.0 in our blog post, “What’s New in Cisco HyperFlex 2.0?”
A Step forward in the Software Defined Strategy
The Springpath software is essential to the success of HyperFlex. It enables a standard server to provide both compute and storage resources from the same device and serves as the cornerstone of the HyperFlex solution. Cisco’s acquisition of Springpath both solidifies Cisco’s position in the hyperconverged space and claims the technology for themselves. Furthermore, this acquisition aligns well with Cisco’s software defined data center strategy as the HyperFlex is both made possible and managed by a unified software solution.
“This acquisition is a meaningful addition to our data center portfolio and aligns with our overall transition to providing more software-centric solutions. Springpath’s file system technology was built specifically for hyperconvergence, which we believe will deliver sustainable differentiation in this fast-growing segment. I’m excited to be able to provide our customers and partners with the simplicity and agility they need in data center innovation.”
— Rob Salvagno
Cisco vice president, Corporate Business Development.
Learn more about Software-Defined Networking and hyperconvergence with our whitepaper Modernizing Your IT Environment With SDN.
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For Further Reading
5 Benefits of Hyperconvergence (HCI): An Infrastructure Report