Are you looking for a unified computing solution for your small or medium-sized business or for the edge of your large IT environment? Cisco UCS® Mini is a total computing solution that delivers enterprise capabilities in a small, efficient form factor.
With Cisco UCS Mini, the Cisco Unified Computing System™ (Cisco UCS), originally designed for the data center, is now optimized for smaller IT environments, remote-office and branch-office (ROBO) environments, and point-of-sale. Cisco UCS Mini delivers servers, storage, and 10 Gigabit networking in an easy-to-deploy, compact form factor. Expandable to 20 servers, Cisco UCS Mini provides a scalable solution with the proven management simplicity of the award-winning Cisco UCS Manager. If you have more than one site, you can use Cisco UCS Central Software for multisite remote management, helping ensure server consistency across every site; you can update 100 sites as easy as you can update one site.
Making Your IT Infrastructure Simpler
The IT needs of business come in all sizes, just as companies come in all sizes. In a 2012 survey of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), 72 percent of respondents said that “IT vendors should simplify technology...” Cisco has done just that with Cisco UCS. Originally designed for the data center, Cisco UCS unites computing, network, storage access, and management into a single cohesive system - a radical simplification compared to traditional, existing systems.
Now companies of any size can reap the benefits of Cisco UCS with Cisco UCS Mini: a solution for deployments of 2 to 20 servers. Cisco UCS Mini simplifies Cisco UCS even further by moving the fabric interconnect inside the chassis, reducing power and cooling needs, and shrinking the solution footprint.
Another challenge for any business is keeping up with the upgrades and maintenance needed to keep servers running at peak efficiency. Cisco UCS helps simplify the maintenance process by providing a one-click upgrade for the infrastructure and servers. For remote offices, those tasks can be managed from Cisco UCS Central Software. This capability helps reduce the costs associated with IT.
Cisco UCS Mini Solution Components
Cisco UCS B200 M4 Blade Server
Delivering enterprise-class performance in a compact form factor, the Cisco UCS B200 M4 Blade Server can quickly deploy stateless physical and virtual workloads. The server addresses a broad set of workloads, including IT and web infrastructure and distributed database, enterprise resource planning (ERP), and customer relationship management (CRM) applications. The Cisco UCS B200 M4 is built on the Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600 v3 family, with up to 1.5 TB of memory, up to two hot-pluggable drives, and up to 40-Gbps total bandwidth. It offers exceptional levels of performance, flexibility, and I/O throughput to run the most demanding applications.
Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server
Delivering performance, versatility, and density without compromise, the Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Server is designed for customers who do not need the features and performance of the latest Intel Xeon processors but who still need a versatile workhorse server. The Cisco UCS B200 M3 server harnesses the power of the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v2 product family, with up to 768 GB of RAM, two hot-pluggable hard drives, and 10 Gigabit Ethernet connectivity.
Cisco UCS B420 M3 Blade Server
Designed for enterprise performance and scalability, the Cisco UCS B420 M3 Blade Server combines the advantages of 4-socket computing with the cost-effective Intel Xeon processor E5-4600 and E5-4600 v2 product families for demanding virtualization and database workloads. It offers industry-leading computing density, I/O bandwidth, and memory footprint. The full-width Cisco UCS B420 M3 supports 3.0 TB of memory and takes full advantage Cisco UCS virtual interface card (VIC) technology for up to 80-Gbps aggregate I/O bandwidth.
Cisco UCS 5108 Blade Server Chassis
The blade server chassis for the Cisco UCS Mini can accommodate up to eight half-width Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Servers. The 6RU chassis can mount in an industry-standard 19-inch rack such as the Cisco® R Series Racks or be placed on any sturdy surface. Dual-voltage AC (100-120V and 200-240V) and 48V DC power supplies make Cisco UCS Mini ready for global deployment.
Cisco UCS 6324 Fabric Interconnect
The Cisco UCS 6324 Fabric Interconnect extends the Cisco UCS architecture into environments that require smaller domains. Providing the same unified server and networking capabilities as the top-of-rack Cisco UCS 6200 Series Fabric Interconnects, the Cisco UCS 6324 Fabric Interconnect embeds the connectivity within the Cisco UCS 5108 Blade Server Chassis to provide a smaller domain of up to 20 servers. With a single Cisco UCS 5108 chassis, up to 7 direct-connect rack servers can be used. With a second Cisco UCS 5108 chassis, up to 4 direct-connect rack servers can be used4. Figure 1 shows a Cisco UCS Mini solution with optional rack servers.
Figure 1. Cisco UCS Mini Solution Including Two Optional Directly Connected Rack Servers
Cisco UCS Manager
Cisco UCS Manager provides unified, embedded management of all software and hardware components in a Cisco UCS Mini solution. It offers an intuitive GUI, a command-line interface (CLI), and a robust API to manage all system configuration and operations.
Starting with Cisco UCS Manager Release 3.0(2), a HTML 5 user interface is available, eliminating the need for Java for console access.
Optional components include Cisco UCS C-Series Rack Servers and Cisco UCS Central Software for managing multiple instances of Cisco UCS Mini.
Cisco UCS Rack-Mount Servers
Cisco UCS C220 M4 Rack Server
The Cisco UCS C220 M4 Rack Server is the most versatile, high-density, general-purpose enterprise infrastructure and application server in the industry today. It delivers world-record performance for a wide range of enterprise workloads, including virtualization, collaboration, and bare-metal applications. This 1RU server supports up to two Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v3 CPUs, 1.5 TB of RAM, four large form-factor (LFF) or eight small form-factor (SFF) drives, and the Cisco UCS VIC 1227 modular LAN on motherboard (mLOM) 10-Gbps adapter for integration with Cisco UCS Mini.
Cisco UCS C240 M4 Rack Server
The Cisco UCS C240 M4 Rack Server is an enterprise-class server designed to deliver exceptional performance, expandability, and efficiency for storage and I/O-intensive infrastructure workloads. Such workloads include big data analytics, virtualization, and graphics-rich and bare-metal applications. For larger workloads, the 2RU Cisco UCS C240 M4 Rack Server supports up to two Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v3 CPUs, 1.5 TB of RAM, 12 LFF or 24 SFF drives, and the Cisco UCS VIC 1227 mLOM 10-Gbps adapter for integration with Cisco UCS Mini.
Cisco UCS C220 M3 Rack Server
The Cisco UCS C220 M3 Rack Server is designed for outstanding performance and density over a wide range of business workloads, from web services to distributed databases. This 1RU server supports up to two Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v2 CPUs, 512 GB of RAM, four LFF or eight SFF drives, and the Cisco UCS VIC 1225 10-Gbps adapter for integration with Cisco UCS Mini.
Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server
For larger workloads, the 2RU Cisco UCS C240 M3 Rack Server supports up to two Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v2 CPUs, 768 GB of RAM, 12 LFF or 24 SFF drives, and the Cisco UCS VIC 1225 10-Gbps adapter for integration with Cisco UCS Mini.
Cisco UCS Central Software
Cisco UCS Central Software manages multiple, globally distributed Cisco UCS and Cisco UCS Mini domains from a single console. Cisco UCS Central Software integrates with Cisco UCS Manager to provide global configuration capabilities for all servers, simplifying policy compliance. Cisco UCS Central Software also aggregates inventory and fault information across multiple Cisco UCS and Cisco UCS Mini domains to facilitate service assurance for the entire Cisco UCS infrastructure.
Table 1 summarizes Cisco UCS Mini use cases.
Table 1. Use Cases
Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
SMBs typically need fewer servers than large businesses. Many have few or no full-time IT staff members. With Cisco UCS Mini, SMBs can have an easy-to-manage solution that can grow with them as their business grows. Because Cisco UCS Mini is so easy to manage, you can spend more time running your business and less time worrying about maintenance and upgrades. Cisco UCS Manager helps make arcane processes mundane. If a server fails, all the configuration and identity information simply gets associated with the new server, and your system can be back up in minutes instead of hours or days.
Remote and Branch Offices and Retail Environments
Like SMBs, many remote and branch offices lack local IT staff. For these locations, the remote management features of Cisco UCS Mini are especially valuable. If a user reports a problem, there’s no need to send a technician onsite to perform the initial troubleshooting. Cisco UCS Manager can be remotely accessed from any computer on the network, saving time and budget and providing faster resolution that keeps users satisfied. With Cisco UCS Central Software added to the solution, managing 100 locations can be as easy as managing one. Using global policies that apply to all locations, Cisco UCS Central Software keeps all instances of Cisco UCS Mini up-to-date, consistent, and compliant with your company’s polices.
The Cisco UCS Mini solution is a powerful computing and I/O platform capable of ingesting and preprocessing large amounts of data very quickly. It’s an excellent choice for situations in which large amounts of data must be collected at remote sites and processed prior to transmission on a slow WAN or satellite link. Preprocessed data can be made available to local and remote users much more quickly.
Sometimes compliance requires physical hardware separation. For example, companies that want to outsource their server needs may not want their server equipment located in the same domain as another company’s servers. Other companies may be very risk adverse and require very small failure domains. With Cisco UCS Manager and Cisco UCS Central Software, maintaining smaller domains of 2 to 15 servers is no longer a management challenge.
Cisco UCS Mini Validated Solutions
Cisco and our partners have a wide range of validated designs and reference architectures to get your deployment up and running quickly.
Desktop Virtualization Solutions
Small and medium-sized businesses are seeking ways to run compact, self-contained computing infrastructure that is economical and efficient and that offers the potential for growth.
Desktop virtualization can help meet these challenges. However, for midsize customers, one of the main barriers to entry is the capital expense required to deploy proof-of-concept (PoC), pilot, and development environments. For smaller customers, deployment of virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) for fewer than 300 users is cost prohibitive.
To overcome these entry-point barriers, Cisco has developed self-contained VDI solutions, including:
● Cisco UCS Mini, Nimble Storage, and Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 500-Seat, Mixed Workload on Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Servers
● Cisco UCS Mini, Nimble Storage, and VMware Horizon 6 with View Mixed Workload on Cisco UCS B200 M3 Blade Servers
● FlexPod Express with Cisco UCS Mini and Citrix XenDesktop 7.6
Cisco offers a unified computing solution for Microsoft-based small and medium-sized businesses or for the edge of your large IT environments. Cisco UCS Mini for Nimble Storage SmartStack provides a small and efficient platform for Microsoft Windows Server and Microsoft workloads such as SQL Server, SharePoint, Exchange, and private cloud.
Cisco UCS Mini Branch-Office Solution for EMC VSPEX is a prevalidated and modular architecture built with proven best-in-class technologies. Because EMC VSPEX solutions are rigorously tested, the solution drastically reduces server virtualization planning and configuration overhead while contributing to IT transformation through faster deployments, greater choice of components, and more flexibility at reduced risk.
You can deploy Cisco UCS Mini Branch-Office Solution for EMC VSPEX with:
● VMware vSphere 5.5
● Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V
FlexPod with Cisco UCS Mini
By moving away from application silos and toward shared infrastructure that can be quickly deployed, customers increase agility and reduce costs. Cisco and NetApp have partnered to deliver FlexPod, which uses best-in-class storage, server, and network components to serve as the foundation for a variety of workloads, enabling efficient architectural designs that can be quickly and confidently deployed.
FlexPod Express is a suitable platform for running a variety of virtualization hypervisors as well as bare-metal operating systems and enterprise workloads. FlexPod Express delivers not only a baseline configuration, but also the flexibility to be sized and optimized to accommodate many different use cases and requirements.
FlexPod Data Center can scale up for greater performance and capacity or scale out for environments that need consistent, multiple deployments; FlexPod also has the flexibility to be sized and optimized to accommodate different use cases including application workloads such as Microsoft SQL Server, Exchange 2010, and SharePoint 2010; SAP; Red Hat; VDI (VMware View and Citrix XenDesktop); and secure multitenancy (SMT) environments.
For an overview of Cisco UCS Mini solutions for FlexPod, start with the FlexPod with Cisco UCS Mini design guide.
FlexPod design guides are available for both Fibre Channel and IP-based storage.
● FlexPod Express with Cisco UCS Mini and VMware vSphere 5.5
● FlexPod Data Center with Cisco UCS Mini and VMware vSphere 5.5
● FlexPod Express with Cisco UCS Mini and VMware vSphere 5.5 with IP-Based Storage
● FlexPod Data Center with Cisco UCS Mini and VMware vSphere 5.5 with IP-Based Storage
Other Integrated Infrastructure Solutions
● SmartStack: SmartStack combines Nimble Storage CS300 array with Cisco UCS Mini in an iSCSI SAN solution and includes VMware vSphere 6.0 and optional Cisco Nexus® 9372 platform switches.
● VersaStack: VersaStack combines IBM Storwize v5000 storage with Cisco UCS Mini in an iSCSI SAN solution and includes VMware 5.5 U2 and Cisco Nexus 9372 or 9396 platform switches.
Software-defined storage (SDS) solutions provide an efficient and flexible architecture with a modular approach to meet the ever-changing and increasingly demanding storage requirements within any organization. UCS Mini supports Microsoft Windows Storage Services and other software such as that offered by Nexenta and SimpliVity.
StorMagic SvSAN can be deployed on Cisco UCS Mini in two configurations using as few as two Cisco UCS C240 M4 Rack Servers, and growing to seven servers if the need arises. Cisco UCS Mini Solution with StorMagic SvSAN with VMware vSphere 5.5 describes the integrated infrastructure solution on the Cisco UCS Mini. Cisco UCS Mini Software-Defined Storage with StorMagic SvSAN for Remote Offices is a blade-only solution.
JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 9.1
The goal of integrated solutions is to create simplified deployment units that centralize and reduce infrastructure management complexity. This approach helps your staff be more efficient and your business more agile, and it helps you reduce your operating costs. Cisco, Nimble Storage, and Oracle combine best-in-class technologies to deliver flexible Nimble Storage SmartStack solutions for Oracle databases and applications.
Cisco UCS Mini for SAP and SAP HANA
A full chassis with eight Cisco UCS B200 M4 Blade Servers and Intel Xeon processor E5-2699 v3 CPUs achieves up to 689,872 SAP Application Performance Standard (SAPS) performance. A midsize company with a standard three landscapes for several SAP business applications requires about 200.000 SAPS, so Cisco UCS Mini can easily meet business needs. Large enterprises require performance of about 400.000 SAPS.
Two Cisco UCS C220 M4 or C240 M4 Rack Servers complete the solution, hosting the entry-level SAP HANA appliance using SAP HANA Tailored Datacenter Integration (TDI) for production and development landscapes and high availability and disaster recovery. The maximum database size today is 768 GB. According to SAP, 80 percent of all customer databases will be less than 1 TB after compression.
Deploy Cisco UCS Mini Successfully with Cisco Services
Using a unified view of data center resources, Cisco and our industry-leading partners deliver services that accelerate your transition to a unified computing environment. Cisco Unified Computing Services helps you quickly deploy your servers and optimize ongoing operations to better meet your business needs.
For more information about these and other Cisco Data Center Services, visit http://www.cisco.com/go/dcservices.
Cisco has significant experience in listening to customer requirements and providing solid technology innovation for the enterprise data center. Cisco delivers standards-based solutions backed by a broad partner ecosystem of industry leaders to provide end-to-end customer solutions. Unified computing elevates the traditional product classification of network, server, storage, operating systems, and applications to a vision that encompasses the whole data center. Cisco, as one of the largest technology providers in the world, has the resources, expertise, and customer focus to deliver on this vision.
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For more information about the Cisco Unified Computing System, please visit http://www.cisco.com/go/ucsmini or contact your local Cisco representative.